Hair-raising! After Austro-Hungary Emperor Franz Joseph's sells for £11,500, five of the biggest selling celeb hair auctions

The Austro-Hungarian ruler is not the only famous figure from the past and present to have had his hair go under the hammer….

A lock of hair belonging to Austro-Hungarian Emperor Franz Joseph has gone under the hammer and sold for 13,720 euros (£11,500) - more than 20 times its estimated value.

The lock, which belonged to the estate of the valet of one of Europe's longest reigning monarchs, was valued at a mere 450 euros.

Franz Joseph ruled from 1848 to 1916, and the lock of his hair belonged to valet Eugen Ketterl, and was auctioned by the Dorotheum auction house. The buyer was not revealed.

The Austro-Hungarian ruler is not the only famous figure from the past and present to have had his hair go under the hammer….


ELVIS PRESLEY, 2009 - $18,300 (£11,800)

A strand of hair belonging to 'The King' sold at auction for $15,000 four years ago, plus $3,300 in fees, in Chicago.

An Elvis fan snapped up the unique memento after Presley shaved his head in 1958 to go into the Army.

Elvis gets his hair cut before going into the Army in 1958 (PA)

That auction isn't even the biggest price paid for a lock of hair from 'The King'.

In 2002, a 'big Elvis collector' shelled out an astonishing $115,000 for a whole jar of the singer's hair.


JUSTIN BIEBER, 2011 - $40,668 (£26,024)

The Canadian pop sensation gave a lock of his famous hair to Ellen DeGeneres during a chat show appearance in 2011.

Bieber also provided a plastic box in which his previous strand of finely-coiffed hair was to be kept.

Soon after the teeny-bop megastar's hair was auctioned on eBay - and the bidding quickly went through the roof.

Bieber auctioned a lock of his hair for charity in 2011. (PA)

Bieber said on the chat show: 'Yes, it's really my hair, but there's a perk: I wanted to do something good.
I'm giving pieces of it to different people.'

The proceeds from the auction were given to the Gentle Barn Foundation, a Californian animal rights charity.


NAPOLEON BONAPARTE, 2010 - $13,000 (£8,600)

A lock of hair belonging to the 19th century former French Emperor went under the hammer three years ago in New Zealand.

The strand of hair was cut from Napoleon's head after he died in exile in 1821 on the Atlantic island of St Helena.

Napoleon's hair, which went under the hammer in 2010 (BBC)

It was one of about 40 items of Napoleon memorabilia which sold for almost $100,000 in total.

The hair was snapped up by an unnamed London collector.

CHE GUEVARA, 2007 - $119,000 (£58,000)


The iconic Marxist's hair was put up for auction in 2007, after a former CIA operative snipped off a strand from Guevara's corpse.

Guevara's family and supporters protested against the sale, but the auction went ahead and was won by the one and only bidder.

Guevara's hair was cut from the Cuban leader's corpse by a CIA operative after he died. (PA)

The winning bidder, Bill Butler, 61, placed his bid by telephone and won the three-inch strand of Guevara's locks.

The Cuban guerrilla leader was tracked down and shot in the Bolivian jungle in 1967, aged 39. He had been killed by a group of CIA-backed Bolivian soldiers.


JOHN LENNON, 2007 - $48,000 (£24,000)

The late Beatle's locks went under the hammer in London in a lot which also sold signed photos of the group and other Fab Four memorabilia.

The Gorringes auction in December 2007 eventually went down to two telephone bids, with an English telephone bid claiming the unique lot.

John Lennon gave a lock of his hair to the Beatles' former hairdresser. (PA)

Lennon (right) with his trademark locks in 1964 (PA)

It was sold by Betty Glasow, a former hairdresser for the Fab Four during the filming of Hard Day's Night and Help.

Lennon gave her a lock of his hair and a signed copy of his book, which was signed inside: 'To Betty, lots of love and hair from John Lennon'.