• Drama: My ID is Gangnam Beauty
  • Country: South Korea
  • Episodes: 16
  • Aired: Jul 27, 2018 - Sep 15, 2018
  • Aired On: Friday, Saturday
  • Network: jTBC
  • Duration: 60 min.
  • Rating: 15+ - Teens 15 or older


  • Score: 8.4 (scored by 13,258 users)
  • Ranked: #529
  • Popularity: #94
  • Watchers: 21,718

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My ID is Gangnam Beauty
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 8.4/10 from 13,258 users
# of Watchers: 21,718
Reviews: 91 users
Ranked #529
Popularity #94
Watchers 13,258

This series tells the story of Kang Mi Rae, a girl once bullied for her looks. As a result, she became insecure, cautious around people and withdrawn. However, Mi Rae decides she wants a fresh start away from bullying and gets plastic surgery to transform her face. When she begins university, she meets Do Kyung Suk from their middle school days, who sees people for what they are on the inside and not the outside; he then becomes attracted to Kang Mi Rae.
As Mi Rae begins to get teased once more and labeled "Gangnam Beauty", the cold, aloof but kind inside Kyung Suk becomes the one person that stands up for her and in the process, Mi Rae begins to recover her lost confidence and discovers that true beauty is not on the outside.
(Source: AJ at MyDramaList)

~~ Adapted from the webcomic series “My ID is Gangnam Beauty” by Gi Maeng Gi.
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  • Country: South Korea
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 16
  • Aired: Jul 27, 2018 - Sep 15, 2018
  • Aired On: Friday, Saturday
  • Network: jTBC
  • Duration: 60 min.
  • Score: 8.4 (scored by 13,258 users)
  • Ranked: #529
  • Popularity: #94
  • Rating: 15+ - Teens 15 or older

Cast & Credits


29 people found this review helpful
Sep 16, 2018
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 6
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 6.5
Music 8.5
Rewatch Value 8.0
PLOT: Slow paced, ambitious & thought-provoking.
This drama (as well as its source material) depicts a love story wrapped around a social critique of the often cruel role "beauty standards" play in women's daily life. Meeting those beauty standards has become a source of stress for women worldwide, but in South Korea --as this drama suggests-- not being part of the "ideal beauty" results in a harsher treatment from society. This drama also emphasizes that the expectation to look a certain way affect everyone in different ways -- with no one --regardless of whether they are considered naturally beautiful or not-- being spared.

In that respect, Mi-Rae (our female lead) isn't the shallow person the summary might imply. It takes just the first episode to understand how she became a victim of society's expectations. She didn't undergo surgery to become beautiful, she just wanted people to accept her as a "person," which is incredibly heartbreaking.

The issue that arises afterward, one which she hadn't anticipated, was that people would still judge, reject and critique her. And that's where the story takes off. We not only follow Mi Rae as she gains confidence, but also other interesting characters who'd been suffering because (or for) their looks.

It's worth noting, however, that the pacing of this show is slow compared to other rom-com dramas. I'd say it's a stretch to tag it with comedy, since the comedic moments, despite how successfully they are implemented, are few and far between. That's not to say the show is weighted down by an overload of melodrama, because it's not. Instead, this show can be described as a sliced of life focused on self-reflection which, if you're open to it, will get you emotionally invested in the characters. Be forewarned, many of the male characters in this show (and some of the female ones) will definitely rile you up on more than one occasion.

If I have one critique apart from the wardrobe, it would be the disbalance in the portrayal of the male characters. Except for a few gems, all the male characters were written like jerks and that can be off-putting. Some balanced between jerks and good guys could've helped the show feel less toxic.

MAIN CHARACTERS: Interesting & lovable
Kang Mi Rae (female lead played by Im Soo Hyang): She's a character who's suffered all her childhood because her looks didn't meet her peer's standards. She grew up as an introvert, keeping away from people, looking at other people's lives from afar and wishing she was allowed to have fun. Her frustration drove her to seek solace under the knife and, though she now had an acceptable face in society's eyes, her insides were still bruised and broken. Mi Rae is a complex and balanced character. If push comes to shove she'll fight, but mostly she tries to fly under the radar. She's smart and almost a natural when it comes to creating perfumes, but she struggles with an inferiority complex and doesn't like standing in the limelight. Though the actress looks quite old for the role, it is worth noting that the character was conceived by the webtoon artist as having an "older girl" look, so it stays true to the original intent.

Do Kyung Suk (male lead played by Cha Eun Woo): He exists on the opposite side of the spectrum from Kang Mi Rae but also grows up feeling lonely. He's a handsome, smart, strong, kind and very straightforward guy whose isolation came as a result of presenting a front of "perfection" and "hating" anything to do with beauty (for reasons later explained). As a result, he's socially awkward, brutally honest and a harsh judge. Though, to his credit, he's a character whose pride doesn't get in the way of realizing when he's made a mistake and make amends. Though some viewers didn't like his acting, personally I found his stoic way of delivering lines grew on me more and more as the show progressed.

Yeon Woo Young (second male lead played by Kwank Dong Yeon): He's such a good character that he ends up giving Kyung Suk a run for his money. He's kind, honest, selfless and very mature. Though his character is a bit imbalanced (as in he has more strengths than flaws), he's still a lovable man who, despite his good points, doesn't come off as being "too perfect". He's a character who helps those around him without expecting anything in return, even when he's financially struggling. Overall, his charming personality earned him fans within and outside the show.

ANTAGONIST: Complex and pitiful
Hyeon Soo Ah (second female lead played by Jo Woo Ri): She's someone stuck between Mi Rae and Kyung Suk in the spectrum of society's judgment. Though she's considered a natural beauty, she's not a stranger to suffering. Her struggles come from forcing herself to live in service of what other people expect of her. She's a character who's not only dishonest with other people, but with herself as well. Though she earned quite a bit of hate, I personally found her character very pitiful. The drama ended up brushing over her backstory, so if you're curious you can always check out the webtoon to get a better understanding of her motivations.

PORTRAYAL OF ROMANCE: Slow paced, healthy & nurturing
I mentioned before that the show is slow-paced and this is true for the romance as well. However, that pacing allows the progression of classmates to friends to lovers to feel very natural and endearing. There's a lot of cute scenes between the leads without making it cheesy, which is a plus for me.

Some highlights of the romance:
-Their relationship is always healthy.
-Both characters are new at romance, so they take their time to find their ground and, though they stumble, they do it together.
-Both learn from each other, creating a very balanced relationship.
-They learn to communicate what they want and need so the other person can understand, making their relationship not only refreshingly endearing but also nurturing.

OVERALL: Highly Recommended (and the webtoon as well)
This is an interesting slice of life that follows a group of characters trying to find their place in the world and build the courage to live by their standards, rather than society's judgment. Though it's slow-paced, the plot is interesting and the mood is often lightened up by warm moments of affection between the leads, their families and their friends.

Keep in mind, I saw this as it was coming out. So binge watching it might give you a different experience because the plot moves slowly and the acting can sometimes come off looking/sounding very wooden. However, this is doubtlessly a memorable show that'll give you food for thought.

If you're able and willing, I'd also encourage you to read the webtoon. There's a lot of insight to be gained that will help you get a better viewing experience. There are scenes, especially at the beginning of the drama, that'll make more sense if you know the context the webtoon provides.

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78 people found this review helpful
Sep 16, 2018
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
Okay, first of all, I want to address the haters out there. They are going to say that Cha Eun Woo is just another Idol who can't act. He is just a pretty face that doesn't deserve the lead roles already. They will also be saying that Im Soo Hyang is too old for the role. I have also read a few people say that the story was "too slow" and the romance "too childish".
I disagree with all of the above statements. Cha Eun Woo has some serious acting chops. I am not really a critic. Honestly, I usually think everyone is great, but all the negative comments he was getting made me pay extra attention. His character was pretty traditional stoic and standoffish. But I thought he played the part well. He would have these minute facial expressions that showed what he was thinking. And his character grew and progressed as the story went on.
Im Soo Hyang did an awesome job for the part. Because of the plastic surgery she was supposed to look more "mature" than her fellow students, so her age wasn't really a problem. The actress was excellent for the part. I can't imagine anyone else doing such a good job portraying someone who looks beautiful but feels ugly.
As for the rest, haters gonna hate.
This was a lovely show about a girl who was bullied all through her childhood for being "ugly". Before entering college, she gets plastic surgery done on her whole face in hopes that she can have a new life. But it turns out, it takes more than a new face to change your life. She has to learn to love herself and to not judge herself or others based on the way they look.
Most importantly, at least for me, the ending was perfect. It had everything I want in a drama ending. And for me that is pretty rare.

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