Minji, Hanni, Danielle, Haerin and Hyein form NewJeans, the K-pop girl group sensation whose rise up the charts with hit singles like “Hype Boy” and “Attention” can only be described as meteoric. Having formed in mid-2022, the South Korean group hit 1 billion streams on Spotify in just 219 days, the fastest K-pop act to do so. In Korea, the girls have appeared on numerous solo covers of major fashion titles like the local editions of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and Marie Claire, and the band’s Instagram followers ballooned from 3 million in May 2023 to nearly 10 million in September. By then, they had collectively inked a global ambassadorship with Levi’s and were appointed ambassadors for Seoul Fashion Week. Individually, Minji is an ambassador for Chanel in three divisions: fashion, beauty, and watches and jewellery, Hanni represents Gucci and Armani Beauty, Hyein works with Louis Vuitton, and Danielle was tapped by Burberry and YSL Beauty.
They are the first group to debut under record label, Ador, a subsidiary of Hybe, one of K-Pop’s four big players. Their introduction shook up the scene with their pared back girl-next-door and 90s nostalgia stylings, a departure from the highly produced look of girl groups that had been trending before them. The band’s name NewJeans is a reference to their aspiration to be as classic as a pair of denim jeans, while also playing as a double entendre to herald a new generation of music ‘genes’ for the K-pop industry. The members of the quintet are South Korean-born, apart from Danielle, who is half Australian and half Korean and Hanni, who is Australian. In August 2023, NewJeans performed at Lollapalooza, their first big western live event and the first K-pop act to take the stage at the US festival.