Middle-aged women are swooning over William White, a TikTok user from Canada who goes by the handle whiteyy18. His TikTok videos show him lip syncing to famous ’80s tunes, and that has “cougar nation” entranced.
Who is William White? He’s a 21-year-old Canadian model. His TikTok videos have been liked more than 18 million times, and he’s racked up 1.4 million followers on the platform.
Women who grew up in the 1980s seem to think he’s a modern-day cross between Rob Lowe and Andrew McCarthy, adding to the nostalgic feelings triggered by the music itself, like Jessie’s Girl. As Our Community Now put it, “he reminds us of summer flings and high school crushes—guys who drove Camaros and broke our hearts.” He’s known as Whitey on TikTok. The ’80s style mullet helps.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. White Is From Ontario, Canada, Where He Works as a Model
Jessie’s girl 🎸
“This guy has amassed a whole audience of middle aged women and moms on TikTok by posting thirst traps to old 80s hits,” wrote technology reporter Taylor Lorenz on Twitter.
“I saw like other people that were good looking, doing the same stuff and I was like, ‘maybe this could make me get into modelling,'” White told CTV’s Your Morning on Friday. “So, I started just making videos for fun, pretending it was like my own little music video, and it just started blowing up in there.”
White used to work in construction before turning to modeling, according to The Standard.
2. Women Over 40 & Their Husbands Have Made Parody Videos About White
@whiteyy18Let’s get our rock on today 🤟🎸 ##posivity
“Please be 18. Please be 18,” joked this women with her husband alongside in a TikTok video about White.
Responded another woman, “lol, he’s 21. My husband is getting suspicious cause he keeps hearing this song over and over haha.” Another wrote, “You looked into his eyes… there’s no escaping after that.”
3. White Performed in a Video With Legend John Fogerty & Got a Shout Out From Barry Manilow
“Wait, is that John Fogerty,” White started one TikTok video that included… John Fogerty. “This was fun to make w/ @johnfogerty #Centerfield #fogertysfactory,” the caption reads.
Fans were thrilled. “You’re definitely getting noticed by some big names. That’s so awesome. Love this collaboration with a legend. You rock!” wrote one TikTok user.
“A Legend and soon to be legendary. Nice match – home run,” wrote another. “Yesssss love this! Keep having fun Will and we will too!” said another TikTok user.
“omg? Wait?? What???” wrote another. “You just keep making us Canadian cougars proud!!!”
“That is so cool! What an amazing opportunity…two legends working together to unite a nation.. of cougars,” said another.
Legend Barry Manilow seemed to appreciate White’s TikTok about his iconic hit Mandy.
“That was huge, man. Like, it was surreal,” White told CTV. “Barry Manilow, like, I didn’t know him personally, but I knew he was like big time, and I knew that song.”
Manilow wrote on his official Instagram page, “We see you William White @williamwhite18,” sharing White’s cover of his song.
4. White Used to Play Hockey
White has plastered his Instagram page with old pictures showing him playing hockey. The team made the championships. According to CTV News, he played AAA level hockey after high school.
He wants to break into acting, the site reported.
Answer to @pennybettorf I’m back guys!
He even has a TikTok fan page.
5. White Made His First Video on a Whim While Standing in Line to Get Coffee
White described to The Standard how he made his first TikTok while standing in line for coffee with his dad. It was to Manilow’s 1974 song Mandy.
“I was bored, the line was forever, so I just put on the song and did a quick, ‘oh Mandy,’” he recalled.
White explained to the Standard that he grew up listening to “oldies” with his parents.