For a person to become a K-pop idol, they have to go through vigorous training for years. The agency trains you in vocals, dancing, and keeping your voice stable even with complicated choreography. We all know how competitive and harsh the K-pop industry is, and nowadays, they are almost 24/7 in front of the camera, so on top of training, they also have to look good all the time. All in all, debuting as a K-pop idol is not an easy task. But, despite going through all these hardships, some idols decide to leave the group after their debut; either they altogether quit being an idol due to many circumstances, or they debut as a solo artist or join another group. Here is the list of the top 10 K-pop idols who left their group after their debut.
1. Somin (KARD)
Jeon So-min, professionally known as Somin, is a singer, dancer, and member of a co-ed group, KARD. But before debuting in KARD, she debuted in a girl group called April under DSP Entertainment. She left April in November 2015, just three months after her debut on August 24, 2015. As per the rumors, she did not like the concept of April, which is why she left the group. She joined KARD in 2016 and then debuted on July 19, 2017, with a mini album Hola-Hola. After joining KARD, her image changed from innocent and cute to bold and fiery, so maybe the rumors are true; we’ll never know.
2. B.I. (iKON)
Kim Han Bin, who goes by the stage name B.I., is a singer, songwriter, dancer, and a former member of K-pop group iKON. He was the leader and producer of the group. His produced and written albums and songs have won many awards. In 2018 he was awarded the Songwriter of the Year award at the 10th Melon Music Awards. But after his drug allegation, he left the group and terminated his exclusive contract with YG Entertainment. Later, he again debuted as a solo artist under 131 Label on May 7, 2021.
Kim Hyuna is a K-pop singer, songwriter, rapper, and dancer. Before her solo debut, she was a member of the girl group Wonder Girls under JYP Entertainment. She debuted as a member of Wonder Girls in 2006. Then, just one year after her debut, she left the group in 2007 because her parents were concerned about her health and fainting spells. Then, on January 10, 2010, she released her single ‘Change.’
4. Seungri (Big Bang)
Lee Seung Hyun, who goes by the stage name Seungri, is a singer, songwriter, dancer, and actor. He debuted in the South Korean boy band Big Bang and released many hit songs. But all his success ended when he was charged with the infamous Burning Sun Scandal. He was found guilty and was charged with sexual bribery and embezzlement. He was charged with a penalty of 1.15 billion won and three years of prison sentence. In 2019, he said goodbye to his music and acting career.
Wong Yuk Hei, who goes by the stage name Lucas, is a singer, dancer, rapper, and model. He debuted in the K-pop boy band NCT on 14th March 2018. His idol life was no less than a roller coaster ride. His journey is filled with success as well as controversies, and a lot of it. He then left the group with a mutual discussion with SM Entertainment to follow his solo career.
6. Wonho (Monsta X)
Lee Ho Seok, who goes by the stage name Wonho, is a dancer, singer, and producer. Wonho debuted in the group Monsta X on May 14, 2015. Then, he was accused of taking drugs in 2019, and he decided to leave the group following the accusation; later he was found not guilty. Then, he focused on his solo career and debuted with a solo Love Synonym on August 14, 2020.
7. Kim Ga-ram
Kim Ga-ram is a singer and dancer and a former member of the girl group Lesserafim under Hybe Entertainment. She was accused of bullying in middle school and underage smoking. Even after this, she was not removed from the lineup. Hybe announced the hiatus of the idol and temporarily promoted a five-member group following the accusation. But on July 20, the agency declared the departure of Garam from the group.
8. Woojin (Stray Kids)
Kim Woo Jin is a South Korean singer and dancer. He was a former member of the boy band Stray Kids in 2018. But on October 28, 2019, JYP Entertainment announced the termination of the exclusive contract with Woojin due to some personal reasons. Later, he was also accused of sexual harassment by an anonymous female on social media. However, the accusation was proven to be false. On August 8, 2020, he returned with his new single ‘Ready Now.’
9. Soojin (G-IDLE)
Seo Soojin is a dancer and singer who debuted in the girl group G-IDLE. She debuted on May 2, 2018, under Cube Entertainment. She was active during the two years of her debut until she sprained her ankle on October 20, 2020, as announced by her agency. After that, her career started going downhill as she was accused of school bullying on March 4, 2021, by her former classmate, and her agency announced that she has withdrawn from the group but will remain in the same agency. However, the accusations turned out to be true, and she also bid goodbye to the industry.
10. Junhyeok (Day 6)
Junhyeok debuted on Day 6 under JYP Entertainment in 2015. But a few months after his debut, he decided to leave the group. JYP released a statement stating personal reasons for the termination of his contract. Some said that Jun left the agency because he was rumored to date a fan, and JYP terminated his contract as there is a years of dating ban for idols after debut. In a reality TV show, he stated that he was scared of people and they would criticize him no matter what he did; this is the reason why he is not able to return to the industry.