School-aged Pictures of Popular Hallyu K-actors Show the Before and After

For years I’ve been seeing these types of pre-star pictures floating around here and there, and finally decided to collect as many as I can into one post. Half of it is for my own viewing lulz and the other half is to share since so many folks like one or more of these K-actors. This collection of school-aged pictures of past, present, and future Hallyu stars convince me that styling is a big reason why guys went from not to hot, that and also losing weight and/or plastic surgery.

Thankfully for those who did go under the knife, none went crazy with too many procedures, which is a problem with the ladies who elect to change things up. The child actors like Yoo Seung Ho and Kim Soo Hyun have the advantage of proving that some guys are just born good looking, while Song Seung Heon amazingly impresses by looking exactly the same during high school as he does twenty years later today. Check out all the pictures, and try to keep the commentary entertaining in a positive way, m’kay?

Bae Yong Joon

Yoo Seung Ho

Daniel Choi


Ji Chang Wook

Jo In Sung

Hyun Bin

Song Seung Heon

Lee Joon

Seo In Guk

So Ji Sub

Song Joong Ki

Jung Kyung Ho

Kim Bum

Jang Dong Gun

Lee Jong Seok


Kim Woo Bin

Lee Seung Gi

Im Shi Wan

Won Bin

Kim Young Kwang

Lee Soo Hyuk

Kim Soo Hyun

Joo Won


Lee Min Ho


School-aged Pictures of Popular Hallyu K-actors Show the Before and After — 70 Comments

  1. Jung Kyung-ho was surprising. I cracked up at Kim Bum and Lee Jong-seok’s pre-fame hairdos. Wonder how they acted back then.

  2. Just like what koala mentioned, those guys above who went under the knife had not gone crazy, the resemblance is still there..

    Unlike lots of Korean female actresses, their before and after pictures put side by side are weird. Many of their faces are bloated, not thinking they are uglier without natural face expressions.

      • YSH looks the same from the very first film I saw him on which was The Way Home…he was so freaking adorable…I’ve loved him ever since.

    • if they did the same for Korean actresses, I’m quite sure more than a few would turn out to be natural beauties/no obvious surgeries. Jun Ji Hyun, Song Hye Kyo, Gong Hyo Jin, Shin Min Ah, Moon Chae Won, Moon Geun Young, Han Hyo Joo, are all top actresses and don’t appear to have any obvious work done.

      And even the younger-gen girls like Park Shin Hye, Go Ah Sung, Kim Ji Won, Ha Yeon Soo, Jo Bo Ah, not to mention the child actresses etc…..all at least appear to look the same as their younger days.

      • I thought Jun Ji Hyun looks very different in My Sassy Girl compared to the more recent My Love from the Stars. I am very sure she has had work done.

      • Just watched Sassy Girl for the first time awhile ago and first have to say that she was crazy pretty in that movie. Also, she has aged incredibly well and apart from looking more mature and just older, she looks mostly the same.

        I hate how the comment above bashes female actresses for getting PS like they aren’t under ridiculous pressure to fit into a EXTREMELY NARROW standard of beauty and scrutinized more for their appearance than these male actors. Yeah, some of them get (a lot of) painful and potentially dangerous surgery for shits and giggles. I notice you only see these youth photos for celeb men and I’m sort of glad because the reception to the women would probably be much more harsh and judgemental.

    • In reply to Beb:

      I am not sure if your comment about “bashing female actresses” and “judgemental” are addressed to me, if so, then I can only say that my comments are based on what are physically obvious, and not being judgemental, and that I have also seen similar articles for female actresses.

      There are also lots of actresses that have retained their natural state, which are commendable.

  3. I don’t know why folks think that a face changes only because of plastic surgery or weight loss. Yes, they are the reasons too but just look at your own pics of yester years….people do change as they mature. Everyone is raw before a certain age and then we start paying attention to our looks and all….

    btw, everybody is looking great!

  4. I love that Daniel Choi’s look like the gradual progression of most drama leads:
    Happy childhood, something bad/tragic happens causing them to change/begin plotting revenge throughout adolescence, and then he falls in love with his candy in adulthood.

  5. I’m most surprised by lee soo hyuk ‘non’-transformation. I was quite sure his looks can’t be for real, but he looks exactly the same as before, including the mile high nose

    • his bone structure is absolutely spectacular.

      I’m not surprised he’s looked like that from day 1. He’s a very good-looking man but none of his most distinctive features are the kind that would be achieved by the hand of a plastic surgeon (prominent nose, very unfashionably prominent cheekbones, really full lips on a man)

  6. Actually i don’t think any of them went for plastic surgery, but what’s clear about the then and now comparison is that they paid attention to their looks and grooming after they joined the entertainment business.

    It’s great to know that they were normal guys before. And from the looks of LMH’s school pics, he was already a Kimura Takuya in the making tat that age ^.^

  7. I don’t think any of this actors underwent under the knife, styling and make-up can transform a person. If koala posts before and after pictures of most Kpop stars then I can have a laugh.
    All the love for Hyun Bin, Jang Dong Gun, and Jo In Sung!

    • Yep. This is why Korean netizens hold actors/actresses in a much higher regard than KPOP stars (because they already know who the natural beauties are), and why they constantly bash KPOP stars about their looks whenever one of them tries their hand at acting.

    • That’s the same thing I said! Looking back at their school pix is entertaining. Looking back at mine would be sad. Especially during the years when grandma was doing my hair….. :-X

  8. awww Yoo Seung Ho and his sticky-up grass-like hairstyle!

    Most of these guys don’t seem to have gone under the knife, and even those who did didn’t remodel their entire face. In Kim Woo Bin’s case, someone pointed out that his jawline was probably realigned to fix his very prominent underbite – which is an actual medical issue and not just a cosmetic one (I believe them since his chin still remains large and rounded, which isn’t really the ideal kind of chin as per trends now).

  9. Lee Soo-hyuk has looked gorgeous since age 6.

    Is it make-up, or did most of them have some kind of eye surgery? The eyes just look so different from the old pictures.

    • @ Emmy…
      Yes…most of them get their eyes done… It’s pretty much routine.

      Double eyelid surgery is the #1 surgery in Asian countries especially in South Korea.

      My best friend is Korean and she told me that this surgery is as common as getting your nails done is the US.

      She also said that parents gift this surgery to their kids when they graduate from high school and need to start college looking “beautiful”

      She didn’t get any done herself but she told me that her mom still bugs her till today to get her eyes done.

      She’s a korean American who wants to become a medical doctor so she does not care too much about her looks like we are used to seeing in the entertainment industry.

      My point is that it seems to be a culture thing there to “fix” your look and it’s pretty much normal and not taboo at all.

      she told me that there are plastic surgery offices and ads in every corner in Seoul just as much as there are Starbucks or McDonalds in the States. Lol!

    • That’s not even considered PS in the US, strictly speaking. Many kids here had that under orthodontic recommendation. I’m not Kim Woo Bin’s fan though. Just to be fair.

  10. I think the most changed one is jung kyung he really did makeover..i think he is on strict diet judging from his last dramas and instagram pics..
    i was surprised with lee jong suk since despite PS he doesn’t look so different.
    daniel choi pics cracked me up..but he’s so cute now! i wonder when he’ll do a new drama.

  11. 1)Lee Seung Gi = Dorian Grey?
    2) I love some of the hairstyle transformations
    3)many of those super awkward teenage features turn into handsome qualities

    • you are right, i checked it now and he enlisted last week but quietly 🙁

      it’s too bad i was waiting for his new drama (especially after his great role in big man) but i guess i’ll have to wait longer and go watch school 2013 and baby faced beauty..

  12. I’m surprised no one commented about Song Joong Ki’s refusal to age. I feel like he somehow ends up looking younger as he gets older. It’s mind boggling.

  13. Why? They mostly (if not all) look the same before and after. Makeup does change appearance a lot. I don’t really care if they’ve gone through PS or not. What really matters is their acting skills and online charisma. Then I would name Song Joong Ki, Ji Chang Wook, Lee Min Ho, Kim Soo Hyun, Joo Won, and Lee Jung Sook.

  14. Daniel Choi just went into the army? Oh no! He went from the chubby kid next door to hubba hubba. My crush did that once. Complete transformation.

    Seo In Gook just looks super different. Not sure if I’m just seeing things. Maybe it’s just the hair? I dunno.

  15. Joo Won, Kim Bum, Hyun Bin totally recognizable.

    why is it only men though, have women made so much PS that it wouldnt be fair to compare?

  16. lol. I look so different in high school than now. Sometimes, weight changes, maturity, hair style, knowing how to take care of yourself can make your look different. Aside from your eyes, nose, lips, and facial frame, I think addition of fat on your face makes a huge different. I can see some has work done while others look the same. hehe, it doesn’t matter really, they all live by their face, they have to do something.

  17. Seung Gi is still the same, he really has a strong set of mind, despite haters calling him names when he debuted, he kept his face and gained success with his talent (as a singer first) so proud of him

    And he’s totally handsome in my eyes.

  18. changes may Occur from our physical appearance as we grow older.same as those actors mentioned above.Obviously Some of then had Undergone a Tremendous plastic surgery that’s whythey Look so different From their childhood pictures, its their Prerogative anyway to Change their Looks via our Modern technology to maintain their status in the Industry where they Live..

  19. Song JoongKi oppa was handsome since childhood. He has born with this lovely face. There was no surgery. ?? it’s same about Kim soo hyun ?

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