Who are the top 5 most successful female K-pop idols in 2021?

Who the most successful female K-pop idol today? (Image via YG Entertainment)
Who the most successful female K-pop idol today? (Image via YG Entertainment)

An incredible number of female K-pop idols are debuting as either soloists or a part of a K-pop group every month, which means the competition just keeps getting thicker and thicker. Several idols have managed to come out on top through their creative displays of skill and talent.

This article puts together a list of some of the most successful female K-pop idols in the industry today, owing to their work since debut.

Disclaimer: This list was made using data from both search popularity and brand ranking reputations, as well as general popularity in K-pop communities.

Who is the most successful female K-pop idol in 2021?

5) Taeyeon of Girls' Generation

The 32-year-old leader of Girls' Generation was declared one of the best-selling solo artists in South Korea. Taeyeon has sold over 1 million physical albums and 20 million digital singles.

She was termed the "Beyoncé of Girls' Generation" by a writer from Vogue magazine. Taeyeon has openly been declared an inspiration for many K-pop idols, including BTS, CLC and Baek A-yeon. She has modeled for fashion and lifestyle brands as well.

4) IU

IU is a Korean entertainment star, who not only works as a K-pop idol but also as an actress. She is often referred to as the "Nation's Sweetheart" and "Nation's Little Sister" in South Korea due to her reputation for being sweet and kind.

She was reported to be one of the highest-earning celebrities in South Korea, owing to her insanely positive reputation. She has carried out many endorsements and is a global brand ambassador for a variety of companies.

3) HyunA

The K-pop idol has been active in the industry for well over 10 years, and was a part of two different girl groups before she went solo full-time. She was expelled from her agency, Cube Entertainment, after she and her boyfriend E'Dawn (now known as Dawn) openly admitted to their relationship.

She faced an incredible wave of support and was soon signed on to PSY-owned label P Nation along with Dawn. Despite this rollercoaster of a career, the soloist has always stayed strong and made a huge name for herself both nationally and internationally.

2) BLACKPINK's Jennie

Jennie, like Lisa, is almost always a trending topic on social media sites everywhere. The 25-year-old has been scouted by a variety of high-fashion, luxury and lifestyle brands to model their products.

She made her solo debut in 2018, and it was instantly a commercial success. It won her the "Song of the Year" award at the Gaon Chart Music Awards in 2019, and she topped the Billboard World Digital Songs chart as well.


Lisa was determined to be the most popular female K-pop idol in a survey conducted by Nubia Magazine, and it's no surprise why. The BLACKPINK member has won several awards during her career, including the titles of "Social Superstar", "Popular Artist of the Year" and "Most Popular Person of the Year".

Lisa is currently also the most followed K-pop idol on Instagram with 56.8 million followers as of August 2021.

Also Read: 10 K-pop idols who aren't actually from South Korea

Edited by Sabine Algur