Heidi Agan, Royal Lookalike

Editor's Note:  Oh, how I love this profile, and how I love this girl!!!  When I first met Heidi, I was captivated not only by her physical beauty, but also her undeniable warmth.  This is a woman who has created, and defined, the most incredible career for herself.  She is the true definition of "self-made", and as a result of her hard work is now able to travel the world on surreal adventures and provide for her two children at the same time. I admire her ambition, drive and humbleness-- a true "royal" in every sense of the word.

Posing As The Future Queen Of England / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Posing As The Future Queen Of England / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

You may recognize Heidi Agan as one of the most recognizable faces in the world.

The catch?  She’s not who you think she is. 

Saying Hello To One Of Her Many Fans / Photo Courtesy of Heidi Agan

Saying Hello To One Of Her Many Fans / Photo Courtesy of Heidi Agan

Dubbed the best Kate Middleton lookalike worldwide, Heidi began her career in 1999, not as a doppelganger, but as an employee at a local UK restaurant chain, Frankie & Benny’s.

I became an assistant manager at Frankie & Benny’s after college, working my way through the ranks to Senior General Manager. That in itself was a great feat for a woman, as that industry was, and still is predominantly male.

She also had two children, deciding that she would go back to work at Frankie & Benny's, but this time as a waitress which allowed for more flexible hours as a single working mom.

With A Very Active Prince George Lookalike / Photo Courtesy of Heidi Agan

With A Very Active Prince George Lookalike / Photo Courtesy of Heidi Agan

Life was pretty normal until an engagement was announced between Prince William and Kate Middleton in November of 2010. My family started sending me photos, joking ‘I didn’t know you were getting married!’ And then, I started hearing from the customers at the restaurant.

Heidi's regulars started getting in on the fun, asking if they could be served by the “future Queen” and have their picture taken with the waitress that was the spitting image of Kate.

On Location In Hong Kong / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

On Location In Hong Kong / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Because of all the attention, I decided to have some professional pictures taken. I’m not a fan of having my picture taken at the best of times, but did it anyway and ended up sitting on them for a few years as I continued to waitress.
Press Conference In Prague / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Press Conference In Prague / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Fast forward to February of 2012, the photographer who had taken Heidi’s pictures popped by the restaurant to say hello.

He asked me why I hadn’t considered the lookalike thing. I was convinced that such things didn’t exist! I had heard of tribute acts and impersonators, but that’s it. Who would hire a lookalike?

That afternoon, Heidi started researching lookalike agencies in the UK, shocked at how many there were.  Picking one at random, she sent in a photo convinced it was a complete waste of time.

About a week after submitting my photo, I got a reply. I was on the books of an agency. Again, I didn’t hold out much hope that anything would happen. I was, of course, very wrong. Four days later the agency had booked me a job at London Gatwick Airport for a shoot helping to promote their customer service during the Olympics. I was in utter shock and of course very nervous. I went and did the shoot and had a great time. Then the jobs just kept on coming.
A "Real Life" Heidi With Her Two Beautiful Children / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

A "Real Life" Heidi With Her Two Beautiful Children / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Three months after her first gig, Heidi decided that the work was stable enough to allow her to quit her job as a waitress for good.  She says this was a “huge decision” and one that she didn’t take lightly.

I was so worried. Would I make enough money? Was I being flippant and irresponsible when I had two children to support as a single mother? Would this work continue or was it just a fluke after the Royal wedding? I decided it was worth the risk, and I’m so happy I did.
With A Harry Potter Lookalike In Austria / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

With A Harry Potter Lookalike In Austria / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

By September of that year, Heidi's "waitress turned royal lookalike" story had spread worldwide.  Overnight, she started doing interviews back-to-back, flying to New York to appear on The Katie Couric Show, Good Morning America and 20/20.

I am now a full time, self-employed lookalike and I can work when I choose. I never miss a school play, assembly or dance recital anymore. I am home with my children more and that to me is amazing. I thank God every day for making this happen!
On A Shoot, Napping With A Baby George / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

On A Shoot, Napping With A Baby George / Photo Courtesy Of Heidi Agan

Is your career as fun as it seems?!

Yes! I have had so many amazing career moments it’s hard to pinpoint one. I have traveled the world including Australia, Hong Kong, America and countless countries in Europe. I have bizarre conversations with my family now. ‘Where are you going next week Heidi?’ my mother would ask. My reply, ‘I’m off to Austria with The Queen and Harry Potter!’ (lookalikes of course). The lookalike community is huge as I have found out. There is a lookalike of just about every celebrity out there. They are all just a wonderful group of people to work with. It really is like having a surreal but wonderful other family. I can’t wait to see what the future brings. I am destined to be Queen one day! {laughs}

I'd imagine this career also comes with its fair share of challenges, especially in the form of envy and jealousy.

I have encountered quite a few difficult things. People don’t understand what I do for a living and feel it’s necessary to point out that I ‘need to get a life and be my own person’. I am very much my own person. A lookalike is just that…they look like someone. I am not claiming to be her or be her twin for that matter. It’s meant to be a bit of fun. People hire lookalikes for events to add a bit of humor, not to try to fool people. And for the record, I have a life and I love it!

The other hard thing I have had to deal with is internet trolls. I had never encountered such hate before I did this and it was a shock to the system. Some have even been death threats. I have had to learn not to take it personally and now I focus on all of my wonderful, supportive fans instead.

Can it feel simply bizarre being one of the most recognized lookalikes in the world?

Yes! Let’s be honest, just being a lookalike is bizarre! At one point I had to fake being pregnant and wear four different sized bumps to I could keep my character authentic!   Also, I’ve been proposed to about 15 times! 
I’ve realized that there are always going to be people who think what I do is weird, and that’s okay! Everyone has an opinion and I have learned that. What is important to me is that I work hard to be the best lookalike I can be. I spend hours researching things that can make my character better, be it my hair or my mannerisms. It’s all important.

Have you ever met the Royals?

I have never met Kate and William and I don’t think I ever will. I did, however, take my children to Sandringham when Princess Charlotte was christened and that was a fabulous day!

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

If you have to support yourself, you had bloody well better find some way that is going to be interesting.” 
- Katharine Hepburn –

To find out more about Heidi’s incredible career, click here!

Up next on DRIVEN for Women, Meet Vanessa-- A Hollywood Film Executive turned Pediatrician.

 

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