Social media has shown that in these modern times, anybody can become a celebrity. One viral video is enough to carve a path to TikTok stardom or even a music career. But in South Korea, the pop music industry remains as crowded and cutthroat as ever. Good music does not lead to a successful career – especially not in a world where album sales and chart rankings are key. The sheer number of aspirants is enough to intimidate any idol hopeful, given that roughly one million South Koreans aspire to become K-pop artists, reported Reuters. But according to Idology’s Idol Yearbook 2015 , only 60 K-pop groups debuted in the year 2015. In such a saturated market, the topic of disbandment should come as no surprise. In one extreme case, Solia, a girl group from Space Music Entertainment, called it quits just five days after its debut. With so many factors at play – the need to stay relevant, contract negotiations, scandals or even dissonant values – no group is ever really immune to a break-up, not even the most successful ones. 5 times Blackpink’s Lisa proved she’s Thailand’s unofficial princess Thankfully, life after K-pop exists. Ong Seongwu (formerly of Wanna One) and Kwon Nara (Hello Venus) are two examples of former artists who have decided to dive into acting. Others have remained in the limelight as variety show hosts (Sistar’s Bora, Lovelyz’s Mijoo) or musical theatre actors (JYJ’s Junsu, Lovelyz’s Kei). In recent years, former idols have explored even more ways to stay in touch with their fanbases. In line with the continuous expansion of online audio and video platforms, both vlogging and podcasting have become increasingly popular post-idol career paths. Here are five former idols-turned-vloggers and podcast hosts we’re keeping on our radar. 1. Nu’Est’s Aron While memories of Nu’est’s disbandment are still fresh, the group’s eldest member is giving fans something to look forward to every week. Aaron Kwak (who formerly used the stage name Aron) has joined forces with fellow host and former idol Joel Lane for a brand new podcast called Korean Cowboys. With first-hand exposure to both Korean and American cultures, Kwak and Lane believe that Korean Cowboys can provide their audience with a unique point of view. “I think we can bring some insight for people that might be curious about Korean culture, or vice versa,” Kwak said in their pilot episode. “We’d be a good bridge to gap those two cultures for these people.” 5 things to know about Park Seo-joon, Marvel’s next Korean star 2. Ladies’ Code’s Ashley Ashley Choi is no stranger to YouTube. Before making her debut with Ladies’ Code, she posted dance covers of K-pop hits to her own channel. She found her way back to YouTube in 2018, uploading snippets of her daily life. Soon after Ladies’ Code’s hiatus was announced, Choi posted the first episode of Adulting, which remains a well-loved series on her channel today. In addition to vlogging, Choi is a part of Dive Studios, a media platform co-founded by Eric Nam. She co-hosted the podcast Get Real with her friends and fellow K-pop stars, BM of Kard and Peniel of BtoB. With refreshing takes on adulthood and surviving in the K-pop industry, Get Real delivers big laughs, candid opinions and chaotic energy in spades. 3. GFriend’s Yerin Since parting ways with Hybe label Source Music, former GFriend member Yerin, or Jung Ye-rin, announced the launch of her YouTube channel Lovelyn Yerin in February. “There’s so much I don’t know and I have a lot to learn, so the channel will be a place for me to develop along with my subscribers,” she said in her first video. With her signature smile and the same lovable energy that her fans first fell in love with, Jung’s videos are the perfect companion for a lunch break or after a long day of work. 5 K-drama actresses who married ultra-rich husbands 4. Nine Muses’ Ryu Se-ra Before creating her YouTube channel RyuTube, Ryu Se-ra rose to fame as the leader of Nine Muses. In 2014, the label announced Ryu’s departure from the group, citing the expiration of her contract. However, Ryu revealed a different side of the story in a YouTube interview with Fefo Caires years later. She explains that after requesting more creative control over the group’s promotions, “I read a news article that said I’m leaving the band.” Despite pursuing vlogging in the meantime, Ryu’s connection to music remains strong. On her website, she shared that she created her channel to “help promote lesser known girl groups and work as a bridge between K-pop and the international community”. Having been on the other side, Ryu’s heartfelt reactions to K-pop releases are rooted in her experiences and knowledge of music. 5. Rainz’s Hong Eunki All seven members of Rainz took part in the second season of music competition reality show Produce 101 . While the group didn’t make it to the finals, fans loved it so much that the members eventually came together to form a temporary project group, Rainz. 6 K-pop idols who are ‘human luxury brands’, from V to Jennie Following the group’s last round of promotions, Hong Eunki began interacting with his fans on YouTube. His channel offers something for everyone, housing a combination of casual vlogs, the occasional lookbook and behind-the-scenes snippets of his journey as a soloist. Want more stories like this? Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter .