Kate Middleton Has "Built William's Confidence," Body Language Expert Says

At 40, Prince William is more confident than ever.

Kate Middleton
(Image credit: Getty Images)

These days, Prince William has an aura of confidence about him when he steps out on official engagements and shakes hands with famous people and members of the public alike. He appears relaxed and often jokes around, making people feel at ease themselves.

Prince William

(Image credit: Getty Images)

But it wasn't always this way, at least not according to body language expert Darren Stanton. When he was a kid, the now-Duke of Cambridge was actually quite shy, and used self-reassurance gestures to protect himself.

William Diana Polo

(Image credit: Getty/Tim Graham)

As William turns 40 on June 21, Stanton reflects on the confidence the royal has found over the years, and the major role wife Kate Middleton has played in that evolution.

"As young children both William and Harry were quite introverted and did not appear that confident," Stanton tells Marie Claire on behalf of Betfair Slots (opens in new tab).

"In earlier photos of William during public engagements, we see him displaying self-reassurance behaviors and lacking slightly in confidence.

"William has been seen adopting a certain posture that his brother Prince Harry has become known for—placing the flat of your hand inside your jacket.

"It’s a very reassuring gesture when feeling anxious or uneasy and at times William has displayed this. Another tell-tale sign of William’s to show he is uncomfortable is the royal playing with the button on his jackets or touching his cufflinks."

Prince William Laughing And Smirking At A Party At Somerset House In London Hosted By The Press Complaints Commission.

(Image credit: Photo by Tim Graham / Getty)

But over the years, the duke has built up his confidence a ton, and his duchess has been instrumental to that process.

"Over recent years William has really developed as a senior royal, as an empath and as a communicator, and part of that is thanks to his marriage to Kate Middleton," Stanton explains.

"Kate has had a lot to do with building William’s confidence, especially during royal engagements and meeting other civil dignitaries. Of course, becoming a father has given William a great deal of inner peace and tranquility and boosted his confidence in himself."

Stanton adds, "We no longer tend to see the jacket gesture so much these days and playing with his cufflinks has become a rare occurrence, suggesting that William has developed within his own skin and has become very much more comfortable in his future role as King."

The Prince Of Wales And The Duchess of Cornwall, And The Duke And The Duchess Of Cambridge Attend The World Premiere Of “No Time to Die”

(Image credit: Getty/Chris Jackson)

Significantly, the duke is also no longer displaying the "stiff upper lip" that he might have been seen with in the past, or even in the early years of his marriage.

"His willingness to engage in public displays of affection with Kate and his happiness while doing so has become even more prevalent in the last few years," Stanton says.

"Attending premieres, such as the James Bond premiere or recent Top Gun premiere with Tom Cruise, William has quite openly kissed Kate and held her hand.

"During exchanges, the couple have been seen intimately placing their hands on one another’s or holding hands when they are simply sat down. This shows that the couple are very much in love and Kate plays a central figure in William’s life."

In this exclusive image released on October 20, 2021 - Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge are seen together backstage during the inaugural Earthshot Prize Awards 2021 at Alexandra Palace on October 17, 2021 in London, England.

(Image credit: Photo by Chris Jackson / Getty)
Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Bustle and Shape. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.