Growing up, did you ever wish you were a twin? Wouldn’t it be fun to play pranks on your teacher or have someone who just got you, no matter what? Alas, most of us do not have a twin! As of 2013, twins accounted for about 3 in 100 births in the United States.
Only 3% of us have a twin, but most of us have a doppelgänger. In fact, most of us have several, thanks to the limited number of genes that influence facial features. People across the world have stumbled on their doppelgängers and taken pictures with (or of) them. Here are our favorite fifteen!
15 Not one but two doppelgängers
Irish TV presenter Niamh Geaney was determined to find her doppelgänger, even launching a 28-day challenge called Twin Strangers to accomplish her goal. And she did! Geaney found Karen Branigan, who lived less than an hour away. And she found another woman too, Luisa, who lives in Italy.
Geaney traveled to visit Luisa, but wanted to first visit with her friends and family. Luisa’s mother started crying upon meeting Geaney. “From a distance, I thought you were Luisa,” she says.
Geaney reveals, “It was my second twin stranger, and you think I would have been prepared from the first. I just got really really nervous for meeting her, because what does she think of me as well? Would I live up to her expectations.” They compared their smiles, movements and gestures and had so many similarities!
With the public enthusiasm surrounding the project, Geaney launched a website called TwinStrangers.com. You can sign up, upload photos and describe your physical features, and then find matches!
14 Two men on a plane
According to Daily Mail, a passenger on a Ryanair flight met his doppelgänger after a stranger sat in his seat. Neil Douglas and Robert Stirling were on the same flight from Stansted to Shannon Airport, County Clare when the mishap occurred. With the shocking coincidence, Douglas snapped a selfie and shared the pic on social media.
The image went viral and Douglas later talked to MailOnline, saying: "I asked him to move and when the guy looked up, I thought: 'Holy s***, he looks like me.' We had a big laugh about it—everyone had a laugh. We took a selfie and that was it. I later checked into my hotel in Galway to find my doppelgänger checking into the same hotel ahead of me. Total weirdness.”
It’s definitely crazy how similar they look with their ginger hair, full beards, eye shape and adorable smile!
13 Two girls on a college campus
TwinStrangers shares this story of two doppelgängers who found one another at college. In the video, Cordelia Roberts tells us that she didn’t know anyone in Germany when she moved there. Ciara Murphy also revealed she was totally alone when she arrived on campus. Soon people began to ask Murphy if she had a sister on campus and she realized they were talking about Roberts. The duo met, took a photo, and it went pretty vial on Facebook.
They are now a package deal and everyone considers them the twins on campus. Their friend says they even have a bond as if they are twins.
We love listening to their accents, it’s amazing how similar they sound. It's so great that the two found each other and became such good friends. What an amazing connection to have when you're off alone at college!
12 Greeted by the wrong name
Sometimes, all it takes is a move to a new area to find your doppelgänger. You start walking down the street and someone calls you by a different name. That's exactly what happened when retired priest Neil Richardson moved to Braintree, Essex. He found himself constantly being greeted by strangers who called him by the name John!
Richardson later learned that a John Jemison lived a mere four miles away. Jemison just didn't see it. According to an interview with The Telegraph, the pair accidentally met when they boarded a coach for a visit to an exhibition at the British Library. Jemison said: "I didn't instantly notice our resemblance but as I boarded the bus, Neil greeted me with 'Are you John Jemison?'" Jemison thought at first that Richardson wanted something from him, but his wife did a double-take. "We began to look forward to the opportunity to meet at the end of our journey."
11 Found on an advertisement
Many doppelgängers are found via mutual acquaintances, but sometimes you find one on your own. Perhaps on an advertisement! This user on Imgur realized he looked just like the model on the Polo ad. Not a bad comparison really. If you look like someone, it's pretty cool if that person is a model or a celebrity!
Reddit user fingapapits posted the image saying that he found his doppegänger. A fellow user replied, "Did you get paid a lot to model for Polo and where did you find that random guy that looks like you?" fingapapits' joking reply was, "I found him at a Lenscrafters, we fought over the proper shape of thick rimmed glasses matched with a square jaw."
10 Found on a painting
At least if you find your doppelgänger on an advertisement, there's a chance of meeting the person. Not the case if you find your twin on a historical painting hung in a museum. But it can still make for an interesting story!
Max Galuppo was visiting the Philadelphia Museum of Art with his girlfriend, Nikkie Curtis, in 2012 when she realized he resembled one of the paintings. The piece was a 16th century Italian painting created by an unknown artist and titled "Portrait of a Nobleman with Dueling Gauntlet."
Curtis told ABCNews.com that it was really weird when she saw the painting! "He goes to Temple so we'd been saying for a while we wanted to go to the art museum. We went into the armor exhibit and he loved the helmets. He was completely oblivious to it, and I walked past it and was like, 'Do you see this painting right now? It looks just like you.'"
They uploaded the picture on Reddit and immediately got hundreds of comments, spurring Galuppo to research the painting further. "There's not a lot of information from it. The area that the painting is from in Italy, that area is actually where my grandparents are from. I might check out Ancestry.com to see if there's a relationship," Galuppo said.
9 The two never shall meet
How sad would it be to have a doppelgänger and never actually meet them! That's what appears to have happened in this photo snapped from an Imgur user. "Commuting Doppelgängers - I expect them to fall over once we arrive at the station."
We wonder if the user told them after they woke up? We hope so! We're also really curious what they look like when they're awake. It seems our perception of looks is very heavily influenced by context. Sarah Knapton with The Telegraph reveals, "If people are of a similar build, with matching hair-cuts and clothing it is easy to think they look alike. It is known in psychology as ‘verification bias.’ Once one thing makes sense we bend the facts so that everything else fits the mental picture we have built."
We definitely think that's true looking at this picture. Their similarities, plus the fact that they're sleeping, makes them twin stranger material for sure.
8 Amazon rules
Another pair of doppelgängers featured on TwinStranger, Katie found her twin stranger on an Amazon review for a hair color! "I saw her review with a picture and I thought she kind of looked like me so I showed all my friends and family. This is what I would look like with this hair color, what do you think? They all thought it was me and said, 'oh it looks great, you did a good job!'"
Her twin stranger, Paula, flew out to meet Katie and had butterflies before they met. It's so adorable! They both wore the same kind of top and bought them at Kohls. They also discovered they share the same favorite foods and music tastes. "It was instant kinship, like we had known each other forever."
So fun! It's amazing where you can find your doppelgänger.
7 The royalty baby look-a-like
Oh my gosh, we cannot tell you how much we adore this story! Imagine your toddler thought he was actually on the cover of a tabloid? That's what happened when John III's father snapped a pic that was later posted on Reddit. John is pointing to the cover of HELLO! magazine featuring Prince George holding his baby sister, Charlotte.
HELLO! chatted with John's father and found out even more: "We walked past the magazine in Walmart on Sunday and I thought to myself, 'we'll get back to that because it was funny.' When I came back I grabbed the magazine and he said, 'Hey look that's me!' So, then I gave it to him and I snapped a couple of pictures. I didn't realize until later that he pointed at it. It wasn't set up or anything. I sent it to my niece and nephew and he posted it on Reddit and it just went from there."
6 Two stunning europeans
Sara from Sweden flew to meet her twin stranger, Shannon, in Dublin (can we just say how we love these geographical similarities?) After a few searches on TwinStrangers, Sara found Shannon. Shannon says she uploaded her info and completely forgot about it until Sara contacted her!
Sara revealed that she "opened the door and I saw Shannon standing there and literally my heart jumped into my mouth." They stood there and it was so weird. They share similar noses, eyes, exact same ears, lips, expressions, pout and smile!
The girls realized the more time they spent together, the more they recognized themselves.
5 Living together
How cool is this! You find your doppelgänger and actually get to live with them? It really is like finding your twin.
Elisabetta is from Alvito, Italy and Maria is from Sicily, Italy. They met via mutual friends and Maria reveals, "When I saw the first photo together, I was a little shocked because we are very similar." They now live together in the same apartment and have for four years. They say it's very fun, and Elisabetta reveals that once Maria asked her to do a math exam for her, but Elisabetta refused. It's amazing if they really could have passed for one another, but it seems even their friends have trouble telling them apart. Elisabetta says Maria is now like a sister and she's very lucky to have her in her life.
4 It's all about the beard
It's amazing that sometimes the similarities in your doppelgänger come down to more than the facial features themselves. Sometimes, it's a wardrobe style, a similar hair color, the same body type or even a beard! That's the case with this Imgur user who uploaded a photo and captioned it, "It's always an interesting night when you randomly run into a beard doppelgänger."
These features are key, but Professor Manfred Kayser, a forensic molecular biologist of the Erasmus MC University Medical Center Rotterdam tells The Telegraph, "that often lookalikes depend on particular facial expressions, such as the big smile for the Obama lookalike you can find on the internet, or are strongly influenced by image parameters used to make the claim. Often the true resemblance is much less than images taken under certain conditions show."
3 A decade apart
Ambra, from North Carolina, and Jennifer, from Texas, met on the TwinStrangers website as well. Ambra flew to meet Jennifer and they took photos together and hung out. Ambra was nervous to meet Jennifer's mom and it's so sweet. She is shocked at the similarities! "You're my daughter," she says. "Your smiles are the same. How is this possible." She even asks if Ambra was adopted and says she wants to see her family tree.
The crazy thing is that Jennifer is 10 years older than Amber! They totally don't look it. Jennifer revealed to Metro UK that she "wanted to see if I found another person that looked like me. Would they act like me too? Would I feel a kinship? I have always felt a bit out of place. I thought it would be fun to find someone that I might have more in common with."
2 The face swap test
You've gotta love the ability to face swap! This handy feature shows just how alike doppelgängers can be. Reddit user Slinzgod posted a photo of himself with another guy he ran into at a music festival. He wrote, "My own doppelgänger that I ran into at a music festival, plus a face-swap of the photo. The RHS photo is the original...I think."
It doesn't really matter which picture is the original. These two are uncannily similar in their facial features! They even have similar hair and style, judging by their attire and they clearly like the same music if they were at the same music festival. Uncanny!
1 Celeb gender swap
We had to save the best for last. We are Leonardo DiCaprio fans. Massive. We thought he was adorable when he was younger, and he's gorgeous even now. Which is why we can totally laugh at this comparison of Leo and this photo of a woman from the 1960's, Judy Zipper!
Rumors started flying about time travel when Tumblr user lo-parksthecar opened his grandmother's high school yearbook and saw this photo of a woman who looked like DiCaprio. He wrote, "I found Leonardo DiCaprio in my grandmothers yearbook from 1960. ... Suuure 'Judy Zipper,'" Love this so much!