With beautiful art and passionate stories, romance manhwa is a genre that has always been popular. Whether it is set in the modern world or in a land of fantasy, a strong heroine definitely makes any romance ten times better!
Who doesn’t love a badass heroine who takes charge of her own destiny? If you’re looking for an empowering and swoon-worthy read, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we have listed the best romance manhwa with a badass female lead who will surely steal your heart!
15. For My Derelict Favorite
- Story by Kim Seonyu and Ryuho
- Art by Kimyong
When a girl falls asleep while reading her favourite novel, she wakes up as an extra in that very fantasy world. The name of the character she has been reincarnated as is Hestia, and she is happy to fangirl from the sidelines. However, she does not go back to her own world when the novel ends. Instead, she watches her favourite character, the second male lead, die a tragic and painful death.
In anger and disbelief, she wishes for her beloved character to be saved, and wakes up in the past. This time around, Hestia is determined to change the course of the story and save her ill-fated favourite. Cunning and charming, Hestia wins over our hearts as she fights for her favourite and writes her own destiny.
⦁ The female lead is determined and smart.
⦁ Perfect for those who like second male leads.
⦁ It has a unique plot and well written characters.
14. Secret Lady
- Story by Anngato
- Art by Banana
Yoon Seol-woo is born with the uncanny ability to see ghosts. Due to this strange power, she leads an unhappy life full of difficult circumstances, and finally meets an unhappy end as well. However, she is reborn in a fictional world as Rosentine, a lady from an influential noble family. In this life she grows up with a loving family. But she can also see ghosts in this world, a power she must hide to protect her newfound family.
When Rosentine learns of a devious ploy to poison and kill the Crown Prince, she goes undercover to save him. She strikes a deal with the prince to ensure the safety of her family, while helping him survive the dangerous world of politics. In the process, love also blossoms between the two. The female lead’s fierce determination to protect her family is admirable, and all the supernatural elements in the plot give it a spooky vibe that makes it quite unique.
⦁ The story deals with ghosts and other supernatural elements.
⦁ The heroine is devoted to her family.
⦁ Recommended for fans of spooky and gothic stories.
13. Marriage of Convenience
- Story by Ken
- Art by Antstudio, 554, Usinkim
Married off at a young age, Bianca de Arno gains a reputation as a selfish and wicked countess while her husband is away at war most of the time. However, Bianca is simply a misunderstood and lonely girl who does not know any better. She spends all her husband’s money on frivolous activities, but ends up as a beggar on the streets, dying at an early age. Only on her last day does she realise the error of her old ways. She prays for a second chance in her dying moments.
Thankfully her prayers are answered, and she wakes up in the past. Nineteen again, Bianca is determined to rectify her mistakes so she does not suffer the same fate as before. As she changes herself, her relationship with her cold husband also takes a turn for the better. We get to watch the heroine mature into a strong lady, and the male lead is absolutely swoonworthy. The romance is slow paced but it will surely get your heart racing!
⦁ The heroine is given a second chance at life.
⦁ It has an absolutely stunning art style.
⦁ Appeals to fans of reincarnation manhwa with a good romantic plot.
12. My Reason to Die
Story and Art by YUJU
Ji Oh is a high school senior who is a part of the Taekwondo team. However, in a stroke of bad luck, the ambitious Ji Oh injures herself before the tryouts for the National Taekwondo Competition. Torn up by her injury, Ji Oh is dejected and depressed. During this dark phase of her life, she meets Gyeol, a mysterious but handsome boy who changes the entire trajectory of her life.
Gyeol is the very picture of a bad boy, but what he hides under his cold exterior is a very warm heart. Ji Oh finds herself falling for his charms. But not everything goes her way since Gyeol is involved with the wrong type of people, and Ji Oh finds herself wondering if their love is worth the risk. This is a story of young love with a fast-paced plot. It also has psychological elements that make the plot very interesting.
⦁ It is a high school romance set in modern Korea.
⦁ There are elements of reincarnation as the story proceeds.
⦁ Perfect for those who like the bad boy with a good heart trope.
11. My In-Laws are Obsessed with Me
- Original Work by Han Yoon Seol
- Adapted by seungu
Pereshati Jahardt is a noblewoman who was betrayed by her stepmother and stepsister. They conspired with her lover after her father’s death to kill her and acquire all the family fortune for themselves. However, Pereshati mysteriously wakes up in the past, and decides to exact revenge. While planning her revenge, she seeks the help of the grand duke Therdeo Lapileon, whose family hides a dark secret.
Upon discovering this secret, Pereshati enters into a marriage of convenience with the duke. However, the cold and dangerous duke is actually sweeter than he appears, and his entire family grows extremely fond of his new wife. This manhwa perfectly mixes darker themes with wholesome moments, and Pereshati’s family dynamic with her in-laws is just adorable. Her budding romance with the count as she raises his heir is both cute and passionate.
⦁ Portrays a very wholesome family dynamic.
⦁ It has dark supernatural elements.
⦁ Recommended for those who like to see love blossom from a contractual marriage.
10. Beware the Villainess
- Story by Bbongdda Mask
- Art by Pureunkanna
When an ordinary college student dies in a car accident, she wakes up in the world of the fantasy novel “All the Men that Loved Her.” She has taken over the body of Melissa Foddebrat, the villainess who is loathed by all. However, she refuses to let the story play out as it originally did. Melissa vows to protect the female lead by shooing away all the useless men who pursue her. In the meantime, there is also a certain someone who yearns just for Melissa.
Beware the Villainess is a hilarious manhwa with a strong willed female protagonist. There is no animosity between the female lead and the villainess, and instead they become the best of friends. This unique friendship makes the plot fun and interesting, and the romance also has a touch of supernatural elements that adds to its charm.
⦁ The villainess befriends the heroine, becoming her best friend.
⦁ The male lead is a werewolf.
⦁ Appeals to those who like spunky and witty female leads.
9. Perfect Marriage Revenge
- Adapted by so young
- Art by Jerryball
Once a wealthy heiress, Han Iju used to have a perfect life. But things take a turn for the worse when she marries her family’s chauffeur’s son out of love. She is transformed into a regular housewife with a bunch of nagging in-laws. Things get even worse when it turns out that her beloved husband is actually in love with her sister Yura.
Iju runs away, but tragically meets her end when she is hit by a car. However, she opens her eyes a year in the past, before her life went downhill. Given this second chance, Iju decides to change her fate. She is determined to get revenge on all those who hurt her, and begins by breaking up with her former husband. She instead gets into a contractual relationship with Seo Doguk, the man her sister is interested in. With her mind set on revenge, the cunning and beautiful Iju is an absolutely badass heroine.
⦁ A tale of revenge set in modern-day Korea.
⦁ Perfect for fans of the arranged marriage trope.
⦁ The art style is very pretty.
8. Revolutionary Princess Eve
- Story by Irinbi, Suri, Yoon Ji-Seon
- Art by Sagong
The seventh Imperial Princess, Evenrose, is force fed poison by her own sister. With the entire imperial family dead after a revolution by their elite guards, the Homunculus, Evenrose accepts her death, believing she would have been killed soon anyway. However, the new Homunculus Emperor, Mikhaelis, is actually in love with Evenrose. He decides to turn back time just so his beloved has a chance at life again.
Evenrose is surprised to find herself in the past, but decides to utilise this opportunity to change the trajectory of her life. She decides to fight for the title of Crown Princess so she can prevent the downfall of the empire, playing a gritty political game with her cunning sisters. She also appoints Mikhaelis as her personal guard, determined to stop him from going down the same path as his previous life. Evenrose uses her smarts and magical powers to turn the cards in her favour, all the while supported by Mikhaelis who slowly falls in love with her in this life as well. This manhwa has an interesting and nuanced plot, and the chemistry between the two leads is absolutely electrifying.
⦁ The protagonist is a talented alchemist and magician.
⦁ The plot combines romance with the politics of the court.
⦁ Recommended for those looking for a love story between a princess and her knight.
7. For the Third Time
- Story by W
- Art by NARA
Talented and attractive, Baek Dohee is an office worker who is steadily climbing the corporate ladder thanks to her superb work ethic and social skills. However, there is also another secret to her success. Dohee has the ability to time loop. Although the rules of time looping are beyond her control, she uses it to her utmost advantage, correcting past mistakes and helping those around her. But this strange predicament has also rendered all romance meaningless to her, and Dohee is an extremely lonely person.
When her handsome new superior Joonwon walks into her life, Dohee’s carefully built facade of indifference starts to chip away. Not only can Joonwon also time loop, he also believes that Dohee and him can find solace in each other, being the only people who retain their memories in every time loop. Dohee is an absolute girlboss, and her charisma adds an extra spark to this unconventional office romance.
⦁ The female lead is an absolute girlboss.
⦁ It is an office romance with fantasy elements.
⦁ Appeals to fans of modern romance and strong heroines.
6. The Way to Protect the Female Lead’s Older Brother
- Story by Baek Jiyeon and Kin
- Art by Juniljus
This manhwa follows a girl who transmigrates into the world of a reverse harem novel. She is reborn as Roxana Agriche, the older sister of one of the novel’s male leads. Full of dark secrets and dangerous people, the Agriche household is no easy place to survive. Our protagonist is also aware that she is fated to die in the course of the story. Bold and cunning, Roxana realises that her best chance at survival is to save the female lead’s older brother, thus disrupting the main plot.
The art style is beautiful yet dark, and the plot is full of twists and turns. Romance, politics, drama and magic intertwine in this thrilling fantasy manhwa that keeps readers on the edge of their seats. But most of all, Roxana is surely one of the most interesting protagonists in the isekai romance genre.
⦁ It has a manipulative and cunning heroine.
⦁ Perfect for fans of dark fantasy and magic.
⦁ The art style is beautiful and captivating.
5. Go Away Romeo
Story and Art by Paintword
This manhwa is a twist on Shakespeare’s classic Romeo and Juliet. It takes the plot and characters of Shakespeare’s play but instead chooses Rosaline Capulet, Romeo’s former lover, as its main character. While Romeo left the sweet Rosaline for her cousin Juliet, she was actually pregnant with his child and raised their son Mino while he is presumed dead. Raising an illegitimate child, Rosaline is faced with scorn from her family and the rest of Verona’s nobles, but she fights against all odds to give her son a good life.
While Rosaline struggles to re-enter high society and establish herself as a force to be reckoned with, she finds allies in Count Paris and Prince Escalus. She develops a deep friendship with both, and a slow and steady love begins to blossom between her and Paris. However, Romeo and Juliet suddenly reveal themselves to be alive, shaking up the state of affairs in Verona. Rosaline must play her cards right to ensure her son’s safety as Verona is once again thrown into the throes of violence owing to Romeo’s nefarious plans. With a smart and ambitious protagonist like Rosaline, Go Away Romeo is a must-read.
⦁ A retelling of a beloved Shakespeare play.
⦁ Portrays a heroine who fights against all odds for her loved ones.
⦁ Perfect for lovers of classic literature.
4. Your Eternal Lies
- Story by jeonhoochi
- Art by Kkomak
Jailed for murdering her husband at 17, the infamous Rosen Walker is known and loathed throughout the empire for escaping prison twice. She is finally sentenced to lifetime imprisonment at the Isle of Monte, the most high-security prison in the Empire. While being transported to the prison on ship, her guard is none other than Ian Connor, the beloved war hero of the Empire.
Ian Connor, fascinated by the mysterious and feisty Rosen, wishes to unravel the truth behind her life, and find out if she is actually guilty of her crimes. Ian himself is haunted by the horrors of the war that has just passed, and the ghosts of all the precious things he has lost to it. As they unravel the secrets surrounding each other, Rosen and Ian slowly fall in love. Although deeply scarred by her past, the spunky Rosen is a heroine whose strength lies in her drive to make a better life for herself. Your Eternal Lies has a deep and complex plot, with many interesting characters who make it a worthwhile read.
⦁ Both the hero and the heroine have dark pasts full of trauma.
⦁ It has gorgeous visuals.
⦁ Recommended for those who like the enemies to lovers trope.
3. I Abdicate My Title of Empress
- Story by HANBOYEON
- Art by galbi
The beautiful and smart Adelheid is a talented magician and the Crown Princess of the Kotrov Empire. However, she is stripped of her status and power by her mother who marries her off to the Emperor of the far off Echmont Empire. In this unfamiliar land with no one to support her, Adelheid is openly scorned by her new husband, who is madly in love with his concubine Diane.
However, Adelheid refuses to let the Emperor and the jealous Diane step all over her. She instead uses her intelligence and strength to establish her position as Empress, navigating the politics of the court with help from Lionel Baldur, the handsome Minister of Defence. As she recruits Lionel as her aide, a slow but breathtaking romance starts to blossom between the two of them. I Abdicate My Title of Empress has an absolutely badass female protagonist, and her journey as an Empress is a pleasure to read.
⦁ The story has elements of magic and fantasy.
⦁ Combines romance with politics and power.
⦁ Appeals to fans who like determined and strong protagonists.
2. The Villainess Reverses the Hourglass
- Story by SANSOBEE
- Art by Antstudio
Aria Roscente is born the daughter of a prostitute, but believes her life will change for the better when her mother marries the affluent Count Roscente. However, instead of a life of luxury, a terrible fate awaits her. She is constantly shunned by high society, mainly due to her stepsister Mielle spreading rumours about her. This leads to Aria gaining a terrible reputation and being treated as a villainess.
The despised Aria grows into a twisted individual, eventually being executed at a young age. However, she does not die, but wakes up ten years in the past. Aware of the future and the evil intentions of those around her, Aria decides to change the course of events. She sets out on a quest of revenge against Mielle and the others who had wronged her. This is a thrilling tale about a villaness’s redemption. Aria is an ambitious and intelligent protagonist, and the story focuses on both her revenge and romance. It is also drawn in a stunning art style that keeps one hooked.
⦁ It has a strong willed protagonist who is determined to achieve her goals.
⦁ Perfect for those who are looking for a revenge thriller.
⦁ It has a beautiful art style.
1. The Remarried Empress
- Story by Sumpul
- Art by Alphatart
Beautiful and intelligent, Navier Ellie Trovi is the beloved Empress of the Eastern Empire. Adored by her subjects and devoted to her kingdom, Navier seems to have the perfect life until her husband brings home a mistress. He not only disrespects Navier by publicly showing off his mistress, but also has the audacity to demand a divorce from her.
Torn between her husband’s terrible behaviour and her position as Empress, Navier grows close to King Heinrey, the young king of a neighbouring nation. She accepts her husband’s demand for a divorce on the condition that she is allowed to remarry Heinrey. Love blossoms between Navier and Heinrey as they navigate this complex world of power and politics. Empress Navier is a heroine who commands love and respect in every reader through her strength of character. The series also has a well-paced plot with beautiful visuals that add to its charm.
⦁ A story about second chances and falling in love again.
⦁ The heroine is powerful, ambitious and intelligent.
⦁ Recommended for fans who like historical fantasy and drama.
Our list ends with this! We hope you enjoy our romance manhwa recommendations, and please let us know your favorites from the list!