Kim Gyu-ri made her acting debut in 1999 with a supporting role in the first season of the KBS2 anthology series School. That same year, she appeared in the horror film Memento Mori, which won her Best New Actress at the 36th Baeksang Arts Awards and the 20th Korean Association of Film Critics Awards. In 2001 and 2002, she took home two more Best New Actress trophies at the KBS and MBC Drama Awards for Like Father, Unlike Son and I Love You, Hyun-jung, respectively. She then received the Best Supporting Actress honors at the 2002 SBS Drama Awards for her portrayal of the main villain in the hit series Glass Slippers. In 2004, she earned an Excellence Award at the MBC Drama Awards for Han River Ballad. In 2008, she starred in the film Portrait of a Beauty, which gave her Best Actress nominations at the 45th Baeksang Arts Awards and the 46th Grand Bell Awards. In 2014, she joined the main casts of MBC’s Sly and Single Again and KBS2’s King’s Face. In 2022, she became part of the JTBC series Green Mothers’ Club.

Kim Gyu-ri studied at Dongduk Women’s University. She legally changed her first name from Min-sun to Gyu-ri in 2009. She dated late actor Kim Joo-hyuk, whom she co-starred with in the MBC sageuk God of War.