“I am not trying to change my race and look Korean, I just want the k-pop look.”
So says British white man Oli London, 30, when quizzed in a new BBC show- Being British East Asian: Sex, Beauty & Bodies about beauty standards.
Oli London is a super fan of Park Jimin, the lead vocalist and the main dancer in K-Pop super band BTS. Oli London has had 15 surgeries worth about £125,000 ( about SGD$221, 300) in his on-going quest to look like his idol.
Do you think he has succeeded?
Oli London (left) and Jimin, of K-Pop group BTS (right) (pic credits – Oli London/ Instagram and source)
“I think I look very much like a K Pop star. The vast majority of them have surgery so it’s like, for anyone trying to be a K-Pop, they have to have a certain look.”
“And it’s very, very specific, the look. I’m not trying to change my race and look Korean, I just want the K-Pop look.”
Devoted fan Oli London in bed with a life-size cut-out of Jimin, in his bedroom plastered with Jimin posters.
Transforming his looks since 2013
“Basically BTS debuted in 2013 and I was actually living in Korea at the time, and I was watching some TV and BTS performed and I was just amazed by all of them,” Oli London shared.
Since then, he has had numerous nose jobs, shaved down his jawbone, and had titanium screws and brackets inserted to hold his chin in place.
“I’ve had so many procedures, like my whole face is numb, but I love it. It’s such a great feeling. My chin I can’t even feel, I just feel the metal inside my face. My cheeks have no feeling at all so when I smile, it actually feels uncomfortable.”
Why is Oli London so extreme?
In an interview with American talk show host Dr Phil, Olive London shed some light on the reasons behind the drastic lengths he has went to to emulate Jimin.
In the episode, he revealed that he has been upset with his looks since his teenage years.
“I used to get teased and bullied at school. Whenever I was dating someone, they would cheat on me or reject me and I always thought that was because of the way I looked.”
“I want my entire lifestyle to revolve around K-pop and I want my entire look to look like Jimin because for me he is perfection, his jaw shape, his lips his voice, everything.”
He has faced a lot of backlash online
“I get trolled so much online. They say “you’ll never be a Korean pop star”, even though I’ve had two top-eight hits on the iTunes chart. I think particularly the issue people seem to have with me is because I’m British I’m not Korean.”
He has found some success
Oli London has certainly found fame for himself. He has a significant following on social media, with 105k Instagram followers and 47k followers on TikTok. He has also released a K-pop-inspired song “Mirror Mirror” that currently has 1.8 million views on YouTube.
According to his website, the song carries a message for “haters” to turn the mirror on themselves. The chorus ‘Mirror Mirror’ focuses on the idea that people who try to bring others down should turn the mirror on themselves and see their own reflection.