Pin Trader Club

What are Hidden Mickey pins?

Hidden Mickey pins are pins that are produced by Disney that have a Mickey head silhouette detail inserted somewhere in the design. It will be part of the metal of the pin, so the same as the metal which makes up the back and details of an enamel pin.

Hidden Mickey pins have generally more simple designs than some pins and will generally be on the smaller size of pins. The reason for the smaller size is that they are carried on Cast Members lanyards. They were previously called Cast Lanyard pins.

Hidden Mickey pins will belong to a small collection of about 5 to 12 pins. These collections will have themes, such as movies etc. An example is the Rearview Mirror Hidden Mickey pins.

Where to get Hidden Mickeys

What are Waves?

Waves are names that Disney will give to releases. Waves will occur over 3 month periods or quarters, so January to March, April to June etc. The first quarter will be referred to as Wave A, second Wave B and so on. Each wave will have 5 or 6 collections of pins. Each wave will generally contain a chaser or unfilled collection. Chaser pins are unfilled pins (ones with just the metal and no paint). These chaser pins will be unfilled pins from the other collections that are released as part of that Wave. Chasers are generally highly sought after as they are seen as completer pins for the other collections. They are also frequently faked (see below). An example of a collection with a chaser pin is the Dog Bone Hidden Mickey collection.
Hidden Mickey pin release flyer
Hidden Mickey pin release flyer

The problem with Hidden Mickeys

Hidden Mickey’s are unfortunately some of the most counterfeited pins in the pin trading world. The term used for these pins are scrappers or fakes. This is partially due to their simpler design making it easier for pin producers to create them easily and quickly. Due to Hidden Mickey pins having a high number of counterfeits some people are unwilling to trade for them. Some pin trading groups also prohibit the trading of Hidden Mickey’s to protect their pin community.

You should exercise caution when trading with Cast Members for Hidden Mickeys as a high number of their lanyard pins can be scrapper pins. Cast Members will discard any pins they believe to be fakes but some unfortunately can slip through. We suggest you refer to our guide to spotting fake Disney pins. You will generally have more success with getting genuine pins early in the day as the Cast Members are more likely to have fresh pins on their lanyard. The pins are supplied from their managers.

We love trading with Cast Members and often view the Lanyard Pins that we get from them as unique souvenirs from our trips to Walt Disney World.

Have you any hints or tips when it comes to Hidden Mickey's? Comment below and let us know!

This article was written by elaine on Friday 20 December 2019.

This article was last updated on Thursday 01 October 2020.

Have some thoughts on this article? Let us know!

Sign in to comment
  1. Heyitsesme 23 Feb 2020 4:08 PM

    This is so useful! I love hidden Mickey pins so much but I don’t trade for them as so are so often faked which is a shame

    1. 👤tosbourn 23 Feb 2020 5:20 PM

      Thanks for saying so! It is such a shame that they have been ruined somewhat.

      I love buying the mystery bags with the older hidden Mickey’s!

  2. MammaPuggleDuck 20 Dec 2019 6:56 PM

    This was an interesting read, thank you! I collect hidden Mickey pins but for me if I like it then I'm not bothered if it's genuine or fake. If I like it, I like it 🤣

    1. 👤elaine 21 Dec 2019 7:10 AM

      We have a few fakes in our collection. When we were newer to pin trading it was hard to tell and honestly I didn’t realise that pins were faked as much as they are. I still like some of the fakes as we traded for them in parks and they have memories attached to them but know better now what to look for. The article linked here on spotting fakes that was written by Toby is really excellent!

  3. pontyloves 20 Dec 2019 4:22 PM

    This is so useful! I've been collecting pins for a few years, and clicked what hidden mickey meant, but didn't realise the issues of counter-fitting behind them!

    1. 👤elaine 21 Dec 2019 7:14 AM

      When I was new to pin trading I got quite confused about HMs. When I googled it there was no definitive answer. The article that Dreamingofdisney__ has written on scrappers and fakes is great. I think fakes are becoming more and more of an issue because some of the pins have such a high resale value.