fashion . News & Events

5 Reasons Why Lim Hyun Ju Is Our New Style Hero

Challenging societal norms, one outfit at a time

“How dare you?”, “Stop seeking attention” and “Have some self-respect!” are some of the hurtful comments women tend to receive whenever they make a controversial wardrobe decision. 35-year-old South Korean television presenter Lim Hyun-Ju has dealt with her fair share of criticism for challenging social norms in her country and has since emerged as a mini style icon for staying true to her beliefs. Read on to learn more about Hyun-Ju and discover why she’s our new style hero.

1. She challenged societal norms by wearing glasses on national TV

Where are our shortsighted sisters at? Hyun-Ju was cast into the spotlight in April 2018 after she became the first female presenter to wear glasses on ‘live’ television. In a telephone interview with Korean news outlet OhMyNews, she shared that she was surprised that her wearing glasses on air had garnered so much attention from the press and social media.

The presenter also revealed that she had been thinking about wearing glasses on screen for a long time and finally decided to do so, as she felt that Korean female news anchors should be comfortable to do the same if they wish to.

2. She pulls off menswear looks with panache

Hyun-Ju’s menswear outfits send a clear message to men that “Anything you can do, I can do better.” Hyun-Ju rocked her first menswear-inspired look on-air in March this year after catching the biographical drama film Colette. In the film, actress Keira Knightley sports a variety of outfits, one of which includes a tailored, black-and-white men’s suit.

Hyun-Ju began her androgynous fashion adventure with a classic blue button-down shirt, which she wore with a pinstriped tie that she borrowed from her father. Since then, she’s been spotted in a number of spiffy fashion items such as a cream-coloured waistcoat and a checkered men’s tie from Burberry. 

3. She defended women’s rights in going braless in public

In February this year, Hyun-Ju sparked another wave of debate after sharing her experience of going bra-free for a day. The presenter was one of the participants who took part in a “No Bra Day” social experiment for Series M, a documentary which covers social issues that are not widely discussed on national TV.

After sharing a series of clips and photos from the experiment on her Instagram, she soon received a flurry of hate comments from users who deemed her behaviour as inappropriate. In response, she bravely fought back and spoke out against criticism that women are being seen as provocative, selfish or rude if they choose to go braless in public.

4. She rocks red-hot ensembles like a pro

As Harry Winston once said, “People will stare. Make it worth their while.” If you’ve ever had second thoughts about wearing a red outfit for fear of attracting too much attention, it’s high time that you toss that idea out of the window and own the look with your brightest smile instead.

Hyun-Ju never shies away from the opportunity to don a bold red ensemble and always rocks it with a ton of confidence. She has embraced a variety of red-hot ensembles in the past, from a flowy and bright maxi dress with a fun beret during her trip to Lisbon, Portugal to a smart, double-breasted crimson suit for a TV show.

5. She always keeps it classy

Elegance seems to be part of Hyun-Ju’s DNA: her roster of classy, chic outfits on Instagram proves that she doesn’t challenge style norms just for the sake of it. Instead, she’s advocating for women’s right to dress in whatever they feel the most comfortable and beautiful in.

Hyun-Ju seems to have figured out the best accessories that complement her elegant sense of style, and they include dangling earrings (which help create the illusion of a slimmer, smaller face), preppy French berets and silky neck scarves.

Do traditional dress codes still have a place in today’s working world?

(Cover photo from: @anna_hyunju

Now, learn about the LGBTQ+ fashion icons who are defying gender norms and redefining fashion.