Korean Street Fashion on a Budget: Get the Look for Less

Korean street fashion has gained immense popularity recently, with its unique blend of trendy and comfortable clothing. It reflects Korea's youth culture, characterized by a mix of Western and Eastern fashion elements. This fashion style is not limited to a specific area or district - rather, certain neighborhoods are known for their fashion scenes. For example, Hongdae is famous for its streetwear and indie fashion, while Myeong-dong is known for its trendy and affordable clothing stores.

Street fashion in Korea is gender-neutral and focuses on layering, oversized clothing, and unique accessories. It is also very common to see people wearing baggy clothes that leave everything regarding body shapes up to the imagination - and while its intention is not to portray modesty, it is refreshing to see. 

What are the Building Blocks of Korean Street Fashion?

Korean street fashion is a unique blend of contemporary and traditional styles characterized by boldness, creativity, and practicality. To achieve the perfect “street” look, it is vital to understand the key elements that make up this style. Korean street fashion is heavily influenced by K-pop and K-drama culture, with many celebrities setting fashion trends. The fashion industry in Korea is also highly competitive, with new trends emerging frequently.

In this section, we will discuss the main elements of Korean street fashion and how to incorporate them into your wardrobe.

Layers and Oversized Clothing

Photo by SHVETS production

One of the most distinctive features of Korean street fashion is the use of layers and oversized clothing. This style is all about comfort, function, and practicality, so it is common to see people wearing oversized sweatshirts, baggy jeans, and bomber jackets. Especially as summer comes to an end, and the fall season kicks in, keep things simple with this basic formula: base layer (vest or t-shirt) + mid layer (long-sleeved tee or sweatshirt) + outer layer (jacket)

To achieve this look, try layering a ribbed shirt under an oversized sweatshirt and pairing it with ankle pants and chunky sneakers. Using layers in this way will help you create a unique and personalized look that stands out and keeps you warm in cooler weather. 

Statement Pieces

Photo by Teguh Sugi from Pexels

Another key element of Korean street fashion is the use of statement pieces. This can be anything from a bold jacket to a pair of chunky boots. Statement pieces are used to add personality and flair to an outfit and are often the focal point of a look. When incorporating statement pieces into your wardrobe, balancing them with more basic items is important to avoid looking too over-the-top.

Vintage and Schoolgirl Looks

Photo by Vasi

Vintage and schoolgirl looks are also popular in Korean street fashion. This style is all about mixing classic and contemporary elements to create a unique and stylish look. To achieve a vintage look, try pairing a lace blouse with a denim skirt and adding a trench coat for a touch of sophistication. For a schoolgirl look, try wearing a plaid skirt with a matching blazer and adding a pair of military boots for a touch of edge.

Sportswear Influence

Photo by Marcelo Dias 

Finally, sportswear influence is a major element of Korean street fashion. This style is all about comfort and practicality, so it is common to see people wearing sportswear-inspired pieces like crop tops, cargo pants, and hoodies. 

To incorporate sportswear into your wardrobe, try pairing a cropped hoodie with high-waisted jeans and chunky sneakers for a casual and comfortable look.

In conclusion, Korean street fashion is a unique and creative style that is characterized by its boldness, practicality, and creativity. To achieve this look, it is important to understand the key elements of this style, including layers and oversized clothing, statement pieces, vintage and schoolgirl looks, and sportswear influence. By incorporating these elements into your wardrobe, you can achieve a stylish and unique look that is sure to turn heads.

Tips for Shopping for Korean Street Fashion on a Budget

One of the main features of Korean street fashion is its simplicity. It is all about pairing basic pieces with eye-catching accessories. For example, a simple white t-shirt paired with ripped jeans and chunky sneakers can create a trendy and stylish look. This is a great way to achieve the Korean street fashion look without spending a lot of money. Here are some basic tips to get you started:

Shop online

Unless you live in Los Angeles, CA where you can visit Koreatown mall, online shopping is one of the best ways to shop for Korean street fashion on a budget. Several online stores offer a wide range of affordable Korean clothing options. Online stores like HelloSouthKorea, YesStyle, Kooding, Stylenanda, Mixxmix, and Chuu offer a variety of Korean street fashion styles, including casual wear, sportswear, and formal wear.

HelloSouthKorea is a popular online store because most of their items ship faster from the US, UK, Australia and Europe. Oh, and shipping is free. YesStyle is another great site that offers free shipping (orders over $35), and a lot of variety.

Invest in the basics

Photo by Airam Dato-on

When shopping for Korean street fashion on a budget, it is important to invest in basics. Basics are versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched with other clothing items. Some popular basics include t-shirts, jeans, and leggings. When buying basics, looking for high-quality materials that will last a long time is important.

Invest in Statement Pieces

Jimin Bomber Jacket

In addition to buying basics, it is also important to invest in bolder statement pieces - unique clothing items that make your style pop. Usually, these would be “as seen on” a favorite Kpop or Kdrama idol, (and picked up by fans immediately). Some popular statement pieces include graphic tees, oversized jackets, and bold accessories. When investing in statement pieces, choosing items that reflect your style and can be worn with multiple outfits is important.


Accessories are also an important part of Korean street fashion. Bold and unique accessories can make any outfit pop. Some popular accessories in Korean street fashion include statement earrings, oversized sunglasses, and chunky necklaces. These accessories can be found at affordable prices at many stores, including online retailers.

The Korean Street Fashion Look is Easy to Achieve

The versatility of Korean street fashion and the combination of different elements - basic pieces, bold colors, and statement accessories - makes it an easy look to achieve, even on a budget. With creativity and a budget-friendly approach, anyone can achieve the trendy Korean street-style look.

In conclusion, achieving the Korean street fashion look is easy and affordable. By pairing basic pieces with eye-catching accessories and shopping at affordable stores, anyone can achieve this trendy and unique style without breaking a sweat.


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