Lee Hye-ri (Hangul: 이혜리; born June 9, 1994), better known mononymously as Hyeri, is a South Korean singer and actress. She is the youngest member of girl group Girl’s Day and is known for her leading role in television drama Reply 1988 (2015). She ranked third in Forbes Korea Power Celebrity list in 2016.
Hyeri was born in Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea. She has a sister, Hye-rim, who is two years younger.
When she was in middle school, Hyeri was scouted by Dream Tea Entertainment and consequently joined Girl’s Day. She later attended Seoul School of Performing Arts, and is currently majoring in Film at Konkuk University.
In September 2010, Hyeri was announced as a new member of Girl’s Day alongside Yura when Jiin and Jisun left the group, just two months after the group debuted. The revamped group released a single titled “Nothing Lasts Forever”.
In 2012, Hyeri made her acting debut in the SBS weekend drama Tasty Life, where she played the youngest in a family of four daughters.
After her 4-day long appearance on Real Men in August 2014, a brief clip of her showing aegyo at her instructor went viral in South Korea, reaching one million views in a day.
Hyeri was later cast as one of the main characters in the teen drama Schoolgirl Detectives, which began airing on cable channel jTBC in December 2014. In late 2014, she was cast in the mystery rom-com drama Hyde, Jekyll, Me, which began airing on SBS in January 2015.
In 2015, Hyeri was cast as the lead of the tvN drama Reply 1988. The drama premiered in November and went on to become a success with audience ratings peaking at 18.8%, making it the highest rated drama in Korean cable television history. Hyeri received critical and audience acclaim for her award-winning portrayal of the female protagonist.
In 2016, Hyeri was cast as the lead in the SBS drama Entertainer along with actor Ji Sung and CNBLUE member Kang Min-hyuk, which began airing on April 20 and for which she won “New Star Award” at 2016 SBS Drama Awards.
In March 2017, it was announced that Hyeri will be making her big screen debut as the female lead in Monstrum; filming began in April and premiered in September 2018. The same year, she starred in the police comedy drama Two Cops alongside Jo Jung-suk.
In 2018, she was cast in Dempsey Roll, a boxing comedy drama film.
The success of Reply 1988 combined with Hyeri’s status as an icon of aegyo led to her becoming one of the most in-demand advertising models in South Korea. By the start of 2016, she had shot over 30 advertisements for brands such as Puma, Lotte Confectionery’s Ghana, Bohae, Amore Pacific’s Happy Bath, and was consequently given the title of “₩10 billion girl (ko: 100억 소녀)” by the South Korean media.
The sales of products such as 7-Eleven lunch boxes and Nongshim ramen increased by 78% and 50% respectively after Hyeri’s endorsement. Similarly, the page views of Dabang (ko: 다방), a mobile app that Hyeri has endorsed since 2015, grew from 5 million to 15 million, and weekly active users increased from 600,000 to 1.5 million after a new ad featuring Hyeri as Harley Quinn was released in 2017.
Following her appointment as the model for Albamon (ko: 알바몬), a part-time job recruiting site, Hyeri was awarded with the plaque of appreciation by the Ministry of Employment and Labour for “promoting minimum wage awareness and compliance” in March, 2015. In January 2017, Albamon received “Consumer Choice Best Brand Award” for “its efforts to improve the rights of the public by providing high quality part-time job announcements” after an ad featuring Hyeri and Im Chang-jung reached over 10 million views in just a month after its release.
In July 2017, she received the Female Commercial Film Star Award at MTN Broadcast Advertising Awards Festival.
On the Lunar New Year of 2016, Hyeri donated ₩50 million to Community Chest of Korea towards improving elderly welfare. Later that year, she donated ₩50 million to Korea Disaster Relief Organisation for the victims of the Seomun Market fire.
Hyeri was appointed as the ambassador for ‘Free Semester Program’ by the Ministry of Education in September, 2016. In February 2017, Hyeri was appointed as one of the ambassadors for the Count Every Child birth registration campaign as part of her NGO partnership with Plan Korea.
In March 2016, Hyeri was hospitalised after being diagnosed with meningitis due to busy schedules and lack of rest.