In 2021, 26 new Korean words were added the Oxford English Dictionary. One of these words was mukbang, defined as “a livestreamed video that features a person eating a large quantity of food and talking to the audience.” With the spread of mukbang from Korea to the rest of the world, the YouTubers behind it have also become as popular as celebrities.
Who has the most subscribers among Korean mukbang YouTubers?
Subscriber Count as of June 2022: 8.25 million
In 5th place is Ssoyoung, a former actress who switched careers to become a YouTuber. To stand out among other mukbang YouTubers, she focuses on eating unique or exotic food rather than just being a typical “big eater.” Ssoyoung binges on such items as sharks, loach, frogs, and even raw octopus.
Subscriber Count as of June 2022: 9.83 million
In 4th place is Hamzy. Unlike other YouTubers who have a set background color, Hamzy is famous for filming against the backdrop of her normal, no-frills home. She presents mukbang like how it’s meant to be: eating ordinary food in the comfort of your own home. Fans call her program a 'real eating show' for its authentic vibe.
Subscriber Count as of June 2022: 9.84 million
At No. 3 is Seol Ki-yang, better known as Sulgi. She has many Korean and Japanese subscribers, many of whom are teenage girls. Her subscriber numbers have soared in less than a year. Sulgi is known for introducing viewers to the food ingredients and explaining how to find them directly, as well as her fun video editing techniques.
Subscriber Count as of June 2022: 13.4 million
At No. 2 is Hong Yu ASMR. She started YouTube in September 2018 and has attracted about 10 million subscribers in three years. She usually eats desserts such as snacks, jelly, and ice cream, but sometimes she cooks spicy and stimulating Korean food such as steamed seafood, stir-fried octopus, and tteokbokki. Hongyu also has a high percentage of overseas subscribers.
Subscriber Count as of June 2022: 16.6 million
Topping the list is Jane ASMR, with over 16 million subscribers. As her name suggests, she heavily utilizes ASMR to add appeal to her videos. She is always shown only from her mouth downwards; her face is still unknown to the general public. Her channel generates about 600 million won in advertising revenue every month. Due to the nature of ASMR mukbang, there are barely any language barriers, so she’s especially popular with foreign subscribers.
Sources: YouTube Channels (Jane ASMR 제인, Hongyu ASMR 홍유, 설기양SULGI, JSON_ARRAY(햄지)Hamzy, 쏘영 Ssoyoung)