Attention, Please: Hyunjin Has Debuted a Short, Blonde Crop


Nothing divides the timeline like a K-pop boy’s hair; so when Hyunjin from Stray Kids debuted a new look just hours before the release of the group’s new album MAXIDENT, fans were understandably surprised. 

After much fan speculation, instead of the signature long hairstyle that he helped popularize — a slightly wolfish mid-length cut in a multitude of hues, from near-translucent platinum to blazing red — the dancer finally revealed a much shorter and blonder crop during the MAXIDENT press conference held on October 7, 2022.

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It’s not unexpected for an artist to change up their hair ahead of an album drop. In fact, it is expected. It signifies the start of a new era. Icons like David Bowie, Madonna, Beyoncé, and Lady Gaga understood the power of reinvention. For Happier Than Ever, Billie Eilish ditched her trademark black hair with neon green roots for a bleach-blonde shag and the shocking transformation broke Instagram records. (Later, the 20-year-old would tell Elle that she made the change in part because she “wanted this album to have its own thing.”)

In the K-pop industry, hair is even more significant. With every album, a group embraces a new concept or visual aesthetic, and hair plays a significant part in its broader impact. Hyunjin understands this better than most. 

Hyunjin first went viral for his long, blonde hair during the group’s “God’s Menu” promotions, where his ponytail was more than powerful. (His fancam on Studio Choom has accumulated over 4.1 million views.) Then came the “Psycho” stage that solidified his identity as “the blonde one” and imprinted on fans both new and old. (That, also iconic, fancam has more than 10 million views.) 

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