People have always looked for ways to categorize their personalities — whether it be through the notorious Myers-Briggs personality test or through zodiac signs. In Korean culture, however, the determining factor for one’s personality is their blood type. Koreans believe that someone’s blood type can reflect their personal views, demeanor, and even compatibility with others. The belief is so strong that some employers even ask the blood types of prospective employees during interviews. But from where did this idea come, and who are you according to your blood type?
The concept of using blood types as an indicator of personality goes as far back as the Classical period in Ancient Greece, with philosophers such as Aristotle and Hippocrates seeking to find a link between the two. In Asia, it initially gained prevalence following the publication of an article titled “Blood Type Biologically Related” by Rin Hirano and Tomita Yashima in 1926. However, it wouldn’t be until the 1970s that a book by journalist Masahiko Nomi would cause the idea of blood type as a personality predictor to surge in popularity. Since then, it's become a large part of Korean history and culture. In 2014, a survey by Wow Korea showed that 75% of Koreans believed in the association between blood type and personality!
Type A: The Farmers
People with blood type A are traditionally seen as conservative, delicate, and introverted. They are highly creative perfectionists, and can be obsessive and uptight about details as a result. Type As are also very attentive, organized, and sincere. However, it is easy for Type As to get caught up in their emotions. They can also be self conscious and experience a lot of shame. Men are often perceived as punctual, good-natured, and sensitive. Women, on the other hand, are seen as prideful and jealous as a result of being too loyal and caring.
Notable people with this blood type include k-pop artists such as BIGBANG’s G-Dragon, IU, and BTS’ Jungkook, as well as actors Lee Jong Suk and Lee Min Ho.
Type B: The Hunters
Those with type B blood are said to be the independent ones of the four blood types, though they are also impassioned when it comes to the people and things that they love. They are known to be very cheerful, talkative, and social, though they can also get impatient easily. As a result of their driven personalities, type Bs have a tendency to go overboard and are said to be unpredictable. Men with this blood type are known as the “bad boys” of the four blood types and have a stigma against them for being infamously self-centered and arrogant. It is also common advice to avoid men with type B blood. Women are known to be outspoken as well as spontaneous, though they can be easily bored and tend to lose interest quickly.
Notable people with this blood type include BIGBANG’s Taeyang and T.O.P., BLACKPINK's Jennie and Rosé, and Girls’ Generation’s Yoona.
Type O: The Warriors
Those with type O blood are said to be the natural leaders of the four blood types. They are confident, passionate, and have a good sense of humor. They also tend to be curious and goal-oriented. Type Os have strong wills and strong spirits, and do not hesitate when making decisions. As a result, however, they can be stubborn and lacking in humility. This is why many Type Os are seen as hating the idea of losing. Men with type blood O are known to be easily trusting and emotional, though they find it difficult to express their feelings due to fear of rejection. Women are said to be bold and unexpected, and experience loneliness and hurt more than others because they are very empathetic.
Notable people with this blood type include BTS’ Jin and Suga, EXO’s Baekhyun, BLACKPINK’s Lisa, and Girls’ Generation’s Tiffany.
Type AB: The Humanists
People with type AB blood are known to be either crazy intelligent or simply just crazy. Known as the “psychos” of the four blood types, they tend to lead with their heads instead of their hearts; though they can also be very sensitive, shy, and indecisive. Type ABs are also said to have a “double personality.” On the inside, they exhibit characteristics similar to type As. On the surface, however, type ABs are very similar to type Bs. Men can come off as aloof on the first meeting, though they are seen as caring and always the first to reconcile after a fight. Women with type AB blood are said to be suspicious of others and usually like being left alone, though they can be considerate and vulnerable about their feelings.
Notable people with this blood type include BTS’ V, EXO’s Lay, Girls’ Generation’s Yuri and Hyoyeon, and Super Junior’s Heechul.