As public as their world domination has been, BLACKPINK’s dating history has remained the most closely guarded secret in the world of K-pop. The fabulous four — Lisa, Jisoo, Jennie, and Rosé — may have rewritten the rulebook with their record-shattering hits and powerful lyrics, but when it comes to boyfriends, relationships and matters of the heart, BLACKPINK has remained pretty tight-lipped throughout their careers.
It’s not all by choice, though; their managing label, YG Entertainment’s “dating ban” restricts the artists’ interactions. During a revealing interview on JYP’s Party People back in 2017, BLACKPINK confirmed the constraints of this rule, which extend to restrictions on smoking, drinking, clubbing, tattoos, and plastic surgery. Yet, an intriguing exception exists: Permission from YG Entertainment’s former CEO, Yang Hyun-Suk, which gives them the power to break any rule.
In a 2016 interview, Jisoo explained how strict YG and Yang were about dating. “The first time I met Yang-Hyun Suk, he asked me, ‘Do you happen to have a boyfriend right now?’ At the time, I was wearing a ring, and he even asked what that ring was,” she said. “I didn’t have a boyfriend, and It was just a ring.”
Despite the prohibition, a lot has changed when it comes to BLACKPINK’s dating history in the past half-decade. From public relationships to reportedly signing on with different agencies, the popular girl group has come a long way since their debut in 2016. We take a closer look at the relationships, link-ups and alleged boyfriends of the BLACKPINK ladies.
BLACKPINK’s dating history: Relationships, boyfriends and more
Jisoo, the ‘unnie’ of the girl group, has always kept her personal life under wraps. However, in August 2023, Dispatch made headlines by revealing that their investigative lens had captured Jisoo and actor Ahn Bo-Hyun at the BLACKPINK star’s residence. Armed with a series of exclusive photos, the platform alleged the duo were dating, sending Blinks into overdrive. Further authenticating the news, YG Entertainment expressed their support for the couple. In a statement, the agency revealed that both Jisoo and Ahn shared “positive feelings for each other and [were] currently taking the time to get to know each other better.” With his roles in K-drama shows like Yumi’s Cells and Itaewon Class, Ahn has been gradually climbing the ladders of success.
However, according to a recent report by NME Asia, the K-pop star and the actor split on October 25. The former couple had “naturally become distant due to their busy schedules” and went their separate ways as a result. YG Entertainment has since confirmed news of Jisoo and Ahn’s split in a statement. “It is true that Jisoo and Ahn Bo-hyun broke up,” the K-pop company told the outlet. Apart from Ahn, Jisoo has not made any of her other relationships public.
Jennie is the only other BLACKPINK member to have confirmed her relationship while in the band. The rapper dated EXO’s Kai from October 2018 to January 2019. SM Entertainment, EXO’s management company, confirmed the couple’s relationship in December 2018 after the two were photographed on a date together. Fans had started speculating that they were an item in October 2018 after Kai and Jennie both posted a series of similarly-timed romantic photos in front of the Eiffel Tower.
However, by January 2019, the sparks had dimmed. SM Entertainment disclosed at the end of that month that the couple had parted ways. In a statement, the company attributed their breakup to the demanding nature of their schedules, indicating that they mutually chose to prioritise their careers while remaining friends.
In a surprising turn of events in February 2021, Dispatch reported that Jennie had been secretly dating BIGBANG’s G-Dragon for a year. The revelation sent shockwaves through the K-pop world. The publication reported that Jennie would frequently visit G-Dragon’s penthouse via a personal parking lot and private elevator, often after her BLACKPINK commitments. The agency also claimed that YG Entertainment was aware of their relationship, and both artists’ managers facilitated their meetings. When the BIGBANG star’s vehicle was spotted at a BLACKPINK concert venue, the rumours were further cemented. Despite the widespread speculation, YG Entertainment maintained its stance of not confirming their artists’ personal lives.
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When it comes to Lisa’s dating history and purported boyfriends, the BLACKPINK rapper has been at the heart of persistent dating rumours involving Frédéric Arnault, the Chief Executive of TAG Heuer and son of Bernard Arnault, the world’s second-richest man. The initial spark of these rumours ignited in July when photos of Lisa and Frédéric Arnault dining together in Paris surfaced on social media.
Since then, neither Lisa nor Arnault have confirmed or denied these rumours, leaving fans and the media in a state of intrigue. The evidence, however, continues to mount, with witness accounts and photographs capturing the pair in various corners of the world. One recent incident that fanned the flames occurred during Lisa’s father’s birthday celebration on October 15, where she was spotted standing between her parents, clutching a TAG Heuer box. Speculation ran rife that it could be a gift from Arnault.
Thai media even added to the growing whirlwind of speculation by reporting Lisa’s presence with Arnault on a boat ride along Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River. Although they refrained from publishing photographs, Arnault’s confirmed presence in the city for TAG Heuer’s flagship boutique opening only added fuel to the fire.
While not much is known about her dating history, Rosé disclosed on an episode of Weekly Idol that her dream man is someone nice, polite, and could sing well. Lisa chimed in and reinforced this, mentioning that Rosé also has a soft spot for men who can play the guitar. However, many supporters believe Rosé’s single status may be attributed to YG Entertainment’s stringent dating policies, which have historically kept their artists’ personal lives under wraps.
However, the rumour mills were rife earlier this year (April 2023) when Rosé was featured on an Instagram Story by renowned Italian fashion designer Riccardo Tisci. The post featured her at a social gathering, which also saw the presence of South Korean actor Kang Dong-won. As is often the case in the world of K-pop, the innocent act of attending an event with a colleague sparked a flurry of dating rumours. Social media users dissected every detail, from matching accessories to outfits, surmising a budding romance between Rosé and Kang.
In response to the escalating rumours, YG Entertainment issued a statement on April 17, emphasising the private nature of their artists’ affairs. However, as speculation continued to swirl, the agency released a second statement later the same day, firmly denying the dating claims. “Previously, we conveyed earlier that it is not possible to confirm the artist’s personal matter in regards to Rosé, but we inform you once again that indiscriminate speculation has continued. We reveal that the dating rumours reported today regarding Rosé are not true, and we would be grateful if you could help so that information different from the facts is not circulated,” the K-pop agency added.
Which BLACKPINK member’s dating history and relationships did you find most intriguing?
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Hero and Featured Images: Courtesy YG Entertainment
This story first appeared on Prestige Malaysia.