Prince William was given wavy forelocks in newly-minted coins for his 40th b-day

Prince William turns 40 years old in a little less than a month. While everyone has been preoccupied with all things Jubbly, it’s worth noting that the Windsors are probably going to do some big parties and activities around William’s 40th. They’ll likely throw a big birthday party for him – and sort of for Kate as well – and it will be the first big royal birthday bash in years. I expect William will get some fancy new titles or patronages, and I also expect a children’s treasury of embiggening puff pieces about how big, strong and hairy he is. It will be especially interesting because many of those embiggening pieces will come out post-Jubbly, meaning William will want to set certain narratives in place following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s visit.

Well, we’re getting a preview of all of that birthday embiggening. For the first time, the Royal Mint is dedicating a special coin with William’s image in honor of his 40th. The image is… remarkable.

The forelock!!! The fact that they gave him a little wavy forelock when William hasn’t had anything resembling that kind of hair for many years. They also made him look like he’s grinding his teeth, which (honestly) checks out. But the hair is driving me crazy! The image was designed and engraved by Thomas T. Dockerty, and the coin will include William’s royal cypher (“W”) and the number 40. The Queen will be on the other side of the coin. I mean… I’m a minor coin collector and numismatist, so I’m slightly interested in these coins merely for their rarity and specialness. But lord, this is such a terrible likeness of William. He had to have approved it, right?

Photos courtesy of Instar, Avalon Red.

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112 Responses to “Prince William was given wavy forelocks in newly-minted coins for his 40th b-day”

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  1. The one kind of looks like Putin. I guess Willy’s evil transformation is complete.

    • Miranda says:

      THAT’S WHAT I THOUGHT! Just glancing at the thumbnail without reading the headline, I was like, “WTF, what’s with the Putin coin?”

      God, I cannot wait for the birthday puff pieces. They’re going to have us laughing for days. We should probably go out and buy some incontinence pads to prepare.

    • PaulaH says:

      I’m sorry but who is the person on the coin???

    • Jan90067 says:

      I thought he was trying for Christopher Plummer in “The Sound of Music” myself. The “arrogant” side, of course.

      • Nivz says:

        No no no. Don’t compare him to Plummer. Georg von Trapp and Maria dancing the laendler on the terrace during the ball was, quite possibly, my first awareness of Chemistry. I was a very small child but I can never forget the gut recognition of something special happening. Of course, wills was also a tween crush for me, and look how that went.

        Let me at least have the laendler, even though Diana’s golden son turned out to look like he has constipation and lockjaw, and is even worse on the inside.

      • Jan90067 says:

        lol I LOVE SoM, one of my all time fav movies! I love that scene, too!

        Just the visage, the profile. That is NOT Willie’s that’s for sure!

    • Popsicle W says:

      I can see his fist in this! 🤣

    • Moxylady says:

      That looks like some creepy Nazi for the soldiers for the motherland propaganda. Wtf is going on over there

    • PrincessK says:

      OMG! Why? Did Charles have a coin struck when he turned 40?
      There is something about it very reminiscent of Soviet style propaganda art. Scary. Ugh!
      This is further confirmation that William is a very reluctant heir to the throne and the establishment are doing all they can to pin him down to face the inevitable.

    • Mrs. Krabapple says:

      At first I thought, “why do they have an American on their coins?” They made him look like George Bush Jr.

    • Maggie says:

      Still can’t see Burger King in that coin!!

  2. Alexandria says:

    Dude doesn’t have much but hate and incandescence. Just give him the fake hair and call it a day.

    • BeanieBean says:

      They gave him a wattle, too! Gotta love it!

      • lanne says:

        A wattle and a combover! I’m giggling. Stick a wig on his head and he could be one of those Bewiggities that the aristos love to hang on the walls. He could be a full on, gout-ridden constipated ancestor.

  3. Amy Bee says:

    They got the clenched jaw right but the hair is just wrong. I imagine that William gave his approval of the coin before it went into production.

    • Elizabeth Regina says:

      They’ve given him the hair that ghosted him at 21 and Putin’s expression. I suppose the poor artist had to make the most of what he had. LOL

    • Margot says:

      The clenched jaw and the flared nostrils. The first and only word that came to mind was incandescent.

  4. Kalana says:

    William had to approve this, right? He looks pained. Royal “smell the fart” acting on a coin. With a fluffy little topping of fuzz on William’s dome.

    William loves that angle, btw. If you look at his pr pictures from his helicopter days or from the glacier in Pakistan: shot from below, head turned to the right.

  5. Becks1 says:

    I would def assume he had to approve this.

    The hair!! It just reminds everyone of what he’s lost lol.

    • SophieJara says:

      So true Becks1! All this makes me think is that he must be really inscure. I don’t think, oh, what a youthful and vibrant looking head of hair.

    • Debbie says:

      When it comes to his tuffs of hair, I suspect William is like Alan Brady from the old Dick Van Dike Show: obsessive.

  6. Noki says:

    I think Harry lucked out that his hair loss is in the middle,he can still disguise it somehow. But William really got it bad. Not even Charles and Edward have such severe loss and Andrew is just a wonder compared to the rest of the Windsors.

    • Amy Bee says:

      Nah, Edward had it worse then William he started balding in his late teens. He and William have the same hairline now.

    • Carrie says:

      Yes, especially since Lord Porchester also went bald. Andrew has the devils luck.

    • Carrie says:

      Yes, especially since Lord Porchester also went bald. Andrew really lucked out.

      • Vera says:

        my understanding was that baldness comes from the maternal line, eg maternal grandfather?

      • Jaded says:

        Porchie is not Andrew’s father. Edward VII lost his hair in the same pattern as Bulliam. Though male baldness is often a trait passed down by the maternal side of the family, Prince Philip’s male predecessors also showed the same pattern of baldness. While the dominant hair loss gene is carried in the X chromosome, men with a bald father are more likely to lose their hair than those with fathers who retained their hair. Based on that, the hair loss that William and Harry have can be traced back through their father and uncles, grandfather Prince Philip and his ancestors.

  7. C says:

    Looking like Edward VIII.

    • MoBiMom says:

      My thoughts exactly…. the Duke of Windsor posed in a full fascist mode.

    • MattieLove says:

      And just what, pray tell, has Sir Willy done to deserve a coin minted in his sort-of-likeness other than survive to the age of 40?

    • Jay says:

      I noticed that, too! Same arrogant, imperious expression. Although (uncharitable thought) the Duke of Windsor had better hair.

  8. DCGal says:

    This is beyond “let them eat cake.” Such breathtaking opulence from two lazy people living on taxpayer money in a time of global unrest and austerity. Down with the BRF and all monarchies.

    • ThatsNotOkay says:

      Yes. This. Brits could almost afford half a litre of petrol with each coin. (Is all that the correct terminology?)

  9. ThatsNotOkay says:

    What? No jowls? This was before the shape of his head inverted to pear.

    This looks more like a Caesar. And not a whit like William. He always has had a good nose though with an excellent bump. I like bumpy noses (Kim K should have kept hers). There. A compliment.

    • Nan says:

      ThatsNotOkay: EXACTLY! I commented before I saw your comment. It’s a Caesar portrait. His real nose is actually more distinguished, though William himself is not.

      • Christine says:

        Yeah, his nose in this is giving me “snorted away my cartilage” vibes. This is not what his nose even kind of looks like, except for the flared nostrils.

  10. L84Tea says:

    Well, they got the flaring nostrils right…

    • Seraphina says:

      @L84Tea, +1 on the nostrils and also, he is looking up because everyone is beneath him.

  11. Nan says:

    They gave him a “nose job” and shortened his face too. Ha, ha. He wanted to look like a Roman coin, not the lugubrious donkey he is.

  12. Over it says:

    Let’s say for some reason old baldy doesn’t become king because the monarchy is no more, do they stop printing the coins?

  13. K says:


  14. SussexWatcher says:


    That’s all I got.

    • JaneBee says:

      @sussexwatcher Right?! 🤣🤣 I don’t mean to be disrespectful to the artist, but this is freaking hilarious. Might buy one and leave it on a train track somewhere.

    • ipetgoat2 says:

      lool same, mine was
      *clasps mouth* 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂 “that looks so stupid!” 😂😂😂😂😂😂

    • SAS says:


    • FeedMeChips says:

      Man oh man this coin guy is bad at his job. Truly hilarious.

      • BothSidesNow says:

        I think it’s safe to assume that the artist was told what Baldemort was to look like. Though the artist captured his soulless essence very well!! I hope he was paid a boatload of money as his work will suffer for this.

  15. MY3CENTS says:

    Do they turn red and Incandescent when you hold them?

  16. Harper says:

    I especially like the far eye rolling back in its socket. Nice touch!

  17. Liz Version 700 says:

    This looks nothing like him, honestly nothing like him at all?!?

  18. MsIam says:

    Between this and those velvet shoes…. What happened to the “just call us Will and Kate, we’re relatable!” campaign? Now he’s back to the “He who shall be king!” vibes. Hmm, I sense more booing is coming in the future.

  19. Eurydice says:

    It’s weird because, except for the hair, if you just look at the individual features, they seem to match with the real thing – but if you look at the whole picture, it doesn’t look anything like him.

    And what is he staring at so high up in the distance? It’s like he’s trying to look at the top of a building without lifting his head, or maybe the artist caught him in mid eye-roll at something Kate said, or maybe he’s aiming his incandescent eyeballs at H&M.

    • L84Tea says:

      That’s his self-respect that he’s watching float away into some great distance. Or maybe it’s just another few hairs.

    • Jaded says:

      He’s looking for the private helicopter to come pick him up for his latest dalliance.

  20. C-Shell says:

    I don’t know. I don’t think this is as flattering as they think it is … they tried to make it look heroic, but the whole world knows exactly what Bulliam looks like and exactly how very bald he is. This coin just emphasizes how much he does NOT look like this image, how very much not heroic he is.

    • North of Boston says:

      It’s just really odd: they gave him a nose job and a forelock, plus an unflattering waddle, took away the jowls, positioned his head and eyes oddly.

      And the neck, collar, shoulders all look off: too thick, too tight, too small.

      This isn’t the flattering likeness FFK might think it is. But thinking back to the portraits from that TOB profile article last year, I think William has a distorted image in his head of how he should portray himself AND how he comes across.

  21. swirlmamad says:

    Just turrble (ala Charles Barkley). There are no words. LOL!

  22. Amy Bee says:

    I forgot to add that Kaiser’s preview of William at 40 was fantastic. I can’t wait to see what the press and KP do for his birthday. All the write ups are going to be about how he’s better than Harry.

  23. Sofia says:

    I had the same thoughts when I first saw them: “William doesn’t have that much here anymore” haha.

  24. aquarius64 says:

    Sorry with the sprouted hair Bill looks like a Chia Pet.

    The queen is hosting the birthday bash so the guest list should be fun. Uncle Andrew? The Middletons? Rose the rumored mistress definitely. As the wife of the Lord Chamberlain the queen is telling Kate to suck it up.

  25. Lux says:

    Th silver looks slightly more like him than the gold, but that’s just how the light reflects off of it.

    He’s literally turning 40…why can’t he just OWN the DOME? Be an example to balding men everywhere by being proud of his lack of locks. As usual the coverup is always worse than the (not) crime and the Lamebridges never know what is or isn’t a good look.

  26. Jferber says:

    In the silver coin I briefly thought it was Harry S. Truman. Except our President was way smarter than this guy.

  27. Jferber says:

    In the silver coin I briefly thought it was Harry S. Truman. Except our President was way smarter than this guy. I think it was the nose that was similar?

  28. Gina says:

    The most distinctive features of Willy’s face are jowls. They developed tremendously from his constant incandescence. This image on these coins has nothing to do with real PWT.
    I have to add, when he is trying to smile, the most distinctive features of Willy’s face are teeth. Pity they didn’t make “smiley Willy” coin.

  29. Jay says:

    Hopefully those of us in realms that still feature the British monarch on our coins will take this as a dire wake up call – this is what our money could look like if we don’t get our sh!t together!

    Also, this is even more clueless than Kate at 40!’s travelling portraits. What about this past year has made William think that what people really want right now is yet another vanity project from him that benefits nobody?

    • Nick G says:

      I’m just so bummed that he’s going to be on our money. I don’t know why it’s affecting me so much.

      • Jay says:

        @Nick G: No need to be bummed – we have a few years before ghost-of-colonialism-future here gets his mug on our coins.

        Let’s get to work!

      • Nick G says:

        @Jay I’m right beside you

  30. Brassy Rebel says:

    I thought it was Charles Lindbergh who soloed the Atlantic on this date 95 years ago.

    And they say women are vain. William didn’t just approve it. I bet he directed the engraver.

  31. CC says:

    This is like a Nazi propaganda piece, where it’s claimed that the superior suctioning power of the flared Aryan nostril will conquer Europe.

  32. ChillinginDC says:


  33. Lilly (with the double-L) says:

    I haven’t read the comments yet, likely stated elsewhere more eruditely, but first reaction: LMAO. It’s the Barbie treatment on a coin.

  34. Hannah says:

    He looks like he’s 70+ here 😵‍💫 I thought this was Chuck (didn’t read the caption)

  35. Lolalola says:

    oh that is HILARIOUS. What vanity! Who is he fooling?

  36. [insert_catchy_name] says:

    Why do all these semi-professional photos of him end up with him looking like an SS officer?

  37. HeyKay says:

    Thanks for saying who it was. No way does that look like Wills.

  38. Iz_Q says:

    Yikes! I am glad to see that I was not the only one creeped out by the fact he looks like Putin! I had to do a double take! And anyone that can look at a recent photo knows darn well that man has zero hair on the top of his hair other than some translucent wisps that catch the light intermittently.

    And I saw this morning that the stans have begun hardcore begging and doing prayer circles that W&K do photos like the official ones Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik did for Mary’s birthday with William in his military regalia and Kate standing next to him in a glittering gown. Good luck with trying to even come close to matching those photos!

  39. AmB says:

    Just two questions.
    1) Will I be getting a direct-mail offer to buy this in “four easy installments” from the people who think I’m 93 years old and speak Spanish as a first language (neither are true)?
    2) Why does this look like Franklin Roosevelt?

    • Saucy&Sassy says:

      AmB, that’s what I thought, too!! Definitely looks like Franklin Roosevelt.

  40. chumsley says:

    It always amazes me how old he and Kate look, I usually forget that I’m several years older than they are. You’d think they’d have access to the best skincare/plastic surgeons available! Even though I’m blessed by my half-Okinawan genes, I feel that can’t explain why they look at least a decade older than me and I’m 44.

  41. Peanut Butter says:

    I don’t recognize his face without the petulance

  42. North of Boston says:

    I keep going back to look at the coins, trying to figure out why they look so ‘off’

    Part of it just comes with capturing a person in sculpture, more than 2 dimensions where you have prominences and relief areas. And part of it is W’s preference for fascist imagery which favors certain postures, styling etc. and of course pressure to ‘hero’ or ‘glam’ him up.

    But then I dusted off my memories of lessons in portraiture Drawing 101 classes and looked more closely… the placement of all of the features relative to each other and his overall head is wrong, particularly the ears vs eyes vs nose.

    As my old instructor would have said: you may have drawn a person, but you didn’t draw that particular person. Start over please, and only put down on paper what you actually SEE.

    • Eurydice says:

      It could be that. There’s a side-by-side on Twitter – photo vs coin – and it seems to me that the mouth and chin are wrong. On the coin the lips are thinner and the chin shorter. Also the folds of the upper lid are more pronounced and the pupils are set higher, which gives that weird effect like he’s rolling his eyes.

  43. Rita says:

    That coin looks like a relic from every fascist regime there ever was.

    • Deering24 says:

      Every time he is in uniform or strikes a “royal” pose, he looks like a tinpot dictator.

  44. Jferber says:

    Rita, absolutely: generic fascism.

  45. Jferber says:

    It is about time for the hair transplant he truly wants for his 40th birthday.

  46. PrincessK says:

    Just checked. Charles had coins struck for his 50th, 60th and 70th. So why is young William having one done for his 40th??

  47. Stacey Dresden says:

    This coin is hilarious!!

  48. PrincessK says:

    You need to check out the coin struck for Kate and William’s wedding……..😐

  49. TeamMeg says:

    Could this coin possibly be any uglier? I’m calling it the cringe coin. Just awful in every way.

  50. Margaret says:

    Actually the coin looks nothing like willie. Willie looks nothing , and I mean nothing like charles. I know people will say he looks like diana, but there is no Charles there.

  51. Krista says:

    It’s kinda giving me Dwight Schrute vibes, n’est ce pas?

    • sophie says:

      Thank you, peeps, for the best humour ever read on this site! Still laughing at so many of the brilliant comments…

  52. briochewench says:

    So do you think the artist presented this version straight up, or was brave enough to do a bald version first. Which was rejected in favour of MOAR hair please

  53. L4Frimaire says:

    You know the royals, always trying to be humble and low key, lol. That coin is laughable in the false flattery. Who is that Wehrmacht officer? It’s giving off fascist dictator vibes. How much more ridiculous do these people want to be? Can you at least use it to buy groceries?

  54. A says:

    Glad to have this advance preview of what my currency is going to look like in the next couple of decades. I was already dreading having Baldy on all our coins and bills, but looks like it’s going to be worse than I thought.

  55. Beverley says:

    Yikes! Will is so unattractive! Fugly! Kate deserves him. May they be tied together in their loveless union, bound by unhappiness and rancor forever, while watching the deeply in love and utterly gorgeous Meghan and Harry live their best lives.

    Karma is a grown ass bitch.