Here’s a list of 11 idols who were able to win first place on one of the many intense competition shows in K-Pop, and what they’re up to now!
1. fromis_9’s Jisun
Jisun competed alongside 41 other contestants on Idol School to debut in the group that would later be named fromis_9! Once she appeared on the top nine ranking, she never left the top two spots, eventually finishing in first place. Fromis_9 debuted in 2017!
2. ITZY’s Ryujin
Ryujin competed on the show Mix Nine in 2017 and consistently held first place throughout the entire competition! However, following the end of the competition, neither the women’s team nor the men’s were able to debut together. Ryujin debuted as a member of ITZY in 2019!
3. SONAMOO’s Euijin
Euijin finished on top out of all the women contestants on The Unit! The Unit was focused on idols who were attempting to revitalize their careers after already debuting. Euijin promoted with Uni.T for a year in 2018 before they disbanded and she continued as a member of SONAMOO!
4. U-KISS’s Jun
Jun won first place on The Unit and promoted with the group UNB from April 2018 to January 2019! Outside of K-Pop, he’s an actor as well; he’s appeared in dramas such as Avengers Social Club (2017) and Imitation (2021).
5. IZ*ONE’s Wonyoung
Wonyoung finished in first place on Produce 48 in 2018 and debuted as the center of IZ*ONE! Following the group’s disbandment earlier this year, Wonyoung joined Starship Entertainment as a trainee.
6. D1CE’s Woo Jinyoung
Jinyoung first competed on Produce 101 Season 2 but was ultimately eliminated from the competition. However, he then competed on Mix Nine representing Happyface Entertainment. He finished in first place, but the winning group never debuted due to a failure by the companies to agree on a contract. Jinyoung debuted as a member of D1CE in 2019!
7. Cosmic Girls’ Meiqi
Meiqi debuted as a member of Cosmic Girls in 2016. She competed on the Chinese spin-off of Produce 101 in 2018 alongside her group member Wu Xuanyi. Meiqi finished in first and Xuanyi in second! They debuted with Rocket Girls in 2018 and promoted with them up until their disbandment in 2020.
8. Kang Daniel
Kang Daniel won first place on the second season of Produce 101 and debuted as a member of Wanna One in 2017! The group was active until January 2019 when they performed their final concert following their contract expiration in December 2018. Daniel debuted as a solo artist in 2019 and has released four EPs since! He’s currently the host on the show Street Woman Fighter.
Somi first competed on SIXTEEN, the competition show in 2015 created to determine the members for the group that would become TWICE. Somi was eliminated in the final round and continued as a trainee before competing on Produce 101. She finished in first place and debuted as a member of I.O.I in 2016; the group disbanded in 2017. Since then, Somi joined THE BLACK LABEL under YG Entertainment and made her solo debut in 2019.
10. WEi’s Yohan
Yohan only had three months of training before entering Produce X 101 in 2019. He finished in first place at the end of the show and debuted as a member of X1 later that year. Following the group’s disbandment in 2020, Yohan debuted as a solo artist in August and as a member of Oui Entertainment‘s group WEi in October. He’s currently one of the MCs on The Show alongside ATEEZ‘s Yeosang and Weeekly‘s Jihan!
11. ENHYPEN’s Jungwon
Jungwon competed against 23 other trainees on the show I-LAND (2020), a collaboration between CJ E&M and HYBE Corporation. He went on to win first place in the competition, debuting as the leader of ENHYPEN in November 2020.