While there are plenty of K-Pop artists whose popularity took a hit due to scandals, there are also lots of artists who maintained their popularity despite scandals. Here’s a list of 4 K-Pop groups whose scandals didn’t affect their popularities.

1. BIGBANG

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BIGBANG has had several scandals throughout their careers, but the group has seemingly maintained its popularity despite all of it.

One of the biggest scandals was in 2011 when G-Dragon was indicted for smoking marijuana. This was big news, as marijuana is illegal in South Korea. A hair drug test was soon done on G-Dragon, and the results showed signs of marijuana use. G-Dragon later admitted to smoking marijuana and went into a hiatus to reflect on his actions. He made his return in late 2011, and his popularity was still great.

I smoked a cigarette that was given to me at a club. It smelled kind of different from a normal cigarette, so I had a suspicion that it was marijuana, but it is still true that I did smoke it.

— G-Dragon

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Former member Seungri was also involved in a variety of scandals, which caused him to retire from the entertainment industry.

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These are only some of the scandals that BIGBANG has experienced, but the group is still immensely loved, as when they renewed their contracts, they received a good amount of support.

2. IZ*ONE

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IZ*ONE was created through the show Produce 48, and they were popular as soon as they debuted. However, they had to go into a hiatus when it was revealed that the votes for Produce 48 were rigged.

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After being on hiatus for several months, IZ*ONE made their comeback and broke multiple records.

3. EXO

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EXO went through a lot of heartbreaking situations in 2014 and 2015.

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In 2014, Kris and Luhan ended up leaving EXO. A year later, Tao would also end up leaving the group. All three of them filed a lawsuit against SM Entertainment, as they felt that they were getting mistreated and that their health wasn’t being taken care of.

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Luhan, Kris, Tao (Left to right)

Despite EXO losing 3 members in a rather short amount of time, they still maintained their popularity.

4. SHINHWA

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Gambling is illegal in South Korea, and celebrities usually face some criticism when they get caught gambling in any form. This is what happened to SHINHWA’s Andy, as he was indicted with illegally gambling on soccer matches in 2013. Andy ended up getting banned from MBC, one of the main broadcasting channels in Korea and withdrew from all of his activities. 

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However, Andy’s ban was lifted after around a year, and SHINHWA’s still going strong as a group.