Turning 40 is a major milestone, even if some people might not exactly be welcoming the beginning of middle age with open arms. But if nothing else, it’s an excuse to celebrate someone who’s really important to you, and it’s nowhere near as scary as people make it out to be.
You just need to make sure they feel the love with a special card and some sincere 40th birthday wishes from you. But what’s the best way to say ‘happy 40th birthday’ that’s a bit more original? To give you some ideas, we’ve put together this big list of sweet, clever, cute, and funny 40th birthday wishes.
We’ve even included some quotes from the greats, and some snarky 40th birthday one-liners to sneak inside their 40th birthday card that are great for anyone able to take a joke about turning the big four-oh and beyond!
The best parts about turning 40
Before we get into all of our 40th birthday wishes, we thought we’d quickly touch on the importance of this milestone birthday. First of all, forty is a great age as you’re not super young nor are you too old. Most importantly, this means you can still go out and enjoy yourself and be silly but have had four whole decades to learn about yourself too.
At this point, you’re not going to put up with things that don’t fit into your life and won’t feel guilty turning down a night out in favour of a chilled night at home. You’ll likely have figured out what you want from life and feel more self-assured than ever before. Doesn’t this all just sound great? Now we know some of the best parts about turning 40, let’s delve into all our different ideas for 40th birthday messages.
Meaningful 40th birthday messages
They say if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all – but that won’t be an issue for you. Pick one of these sincere and meaningful 40th birthday messages to celebrate their milestone birthday:
- Wishing you the happiest of birthdays – I can’t wait to see what you do with the next 40 years, because if the last 40 have shown us anything, they’re going to be amazing.
- Happy birthday and wishing you all the best on your 40th birthday. That’s a great milestone for a truly great human!
- Happy 40th birthday – I’m so grateful to have your experience and kindness in my life. I hope you have a wonderful day.
- Here’s to turning 40, and to many more brilliant years to come. I hope every day is as happy and joyous as this one.
- 40 is the perfect age – you’re old enough to recognise your mistakes, but still young enough to go out there and make some more. Happy birthday!
- Congratulations on four whole decades of being totally awesome.
- 40 years of experience, good times, happy memories, and wonderful friends. You’ve got so much to show for your time here on earth as you turn 40, and you’ve still got a lot more in store. Happy birthday, and many happy returns.
- In life, milestones aren’t supposed to be counted – they’re supposed to be celebrated, so that’s what we’ll be doing. Happy 40th birthday!
Funny 40th birthday wishes
Give them a giggle with our pick of the best funny 40th birthday wishes – and if the card you’ve got is looking a bit generic, then there’s still time to order a funny 40th birthday card from thortful, with same-day dispatch if you order before 6pm.
- The first 40 years of childhood are always the hardest.
- You’re 40! Time to get used to cleaning the house to the music you used to get drunk to
- Happy birthday – I can’t believe you’re 40 years old. I’ve never been so grateful to be so much younger than you.
- Thirties? Completed it mate.
- You know what rhymes with forty? Tequila.
- Forty years old – sounds like 4 perfect 10s to me. Happy birthday!
- Congratulations on hitting the big four-oh! (Is it less scary written like that?)
- Look at it this way, at least you’re not as old as you’ll be next year.
Rude 40th birthday messages
Make them laugh – then remind them to watch out for wrinkles. If your favourite almost-40-year-old can take a bit of laughter at their expense, then these funny 40th birthday one-liners coupled with a rude 40th birthday card are sure to make their day.
- Congratulations – you’re officially old enough for a midlife crisis!
- Try not to think of it as turning 40. Just think of it as getting really old.
- Happy birthday! For your 40th, you’ll be getting… a prostate exam.
- They say maturity comes with age, but you’re 40, and you’re still a w*nker.
- Happy birthday – they say life begins at 40. What the hell did you do with the rest of it?
- I was going to write something snarky, but to be honest mate, we’re all impressed you made it to 40.
- Don’t let turning 40 get you down. It’s too hard to get back up again.
- The best part of being forty is that you did most of your stupid sh*t before the Internet existed.
Sweet 40th birthday messages for her
For ladies of a certain age, they might be feeling a little bit sensitive about turning 40 – so here are some sweet 40th birthday messages for her to celebrate her turning a fabulous 40.
- Wishing you the happiest of birthdays – welcome to your fabulous 40s!
- Happy 40th birthday to a lady who is beautiful in every way, inside and out.
- Forty? You don’t look a day over fabulous.
- Pop that prosecco, you’re 40! Happy birthday!
- 40 looks good on you – wishing you many happy returns and a fab year ahead.
- Hey, pretty lady! Remember, you’re not 40 – you’re 22 with 18 years of experience.
Fun 40th birthday wishes for him
Whatever man it is in your life that’s about to hit their 40th birthday, help mark this important milestone with one of these 40th birthday messages for him written inside a special 40th birthday card.
- Remember, life begins at 40, so you’ve plenty of mistakes still left to make.
- Only 40? That’s still young enough to hit the pub on a Friday night! (Within reason, of course).
- 40 years old. The age at which fixing classic cars and taking up woodworking become acceptable hobbies.
- Happy 40th! With 4 decades of well-earned experience under your belt, the next 4 are going to be a breeze.
- Congratulations on turning 40! Only 10 more years until you can officially have your mid-life crisis.
- I hear you’ve just turned 40. Buckle up for some wildly tame celebrations and a 10pm bedtime.
Lovely 40th birthday wishes for a friend
You know turning 40 is a pretty big deal since you can find specific age cards and that means you’ve got to also write a message mentioning it in the card. Here are some 40th birthday wishes for a friend that we’ve come up with if you’ve got a mate in your life about to enter their fourth decade:
- Well, would you look at that, you’ve managed to hit another milestone birthday. Happy 40th buddy!
- Ol’ buddy ol’ pal, the grey hairs are truly appearing now that you’re 40, happy birthday.
- For 40, you’re totally thriving, happy birthday!
- You’re one of my nearest and dearest friends so I couldn’t miss out on wishing you the most happy 40th birthday.
- They say all sorts happen when you turn 40, but you don’t look or act a day over 30. Happy 40th bestie!
- How are you 40 years old? That means we’ve known each other for many moons now, and I’m so proud to call you my friend.
Heartfelt 40th birthday wishes for mum
If it’s your mum who’s 40th birthday is coming up, we’re here to help you figure out how to express your feelings. So, without further ado, here are our heartfelt 40th birthday wishes for mum:
- Mum, you’ve been the best parent I could’ve asked for and I hope you have the most special 40th birthday.
- On your 40th birthday, I wanted to let you know how much you mean to me and can’t wait to celebrate with you.
- Mum, you’ve been my biggest supporter, and I’m sending you the biggest hugs and kisses on your 40th birthday.
- Happy birthday mum! Wishing you have the best year ever as you celebrate your 40th (which I know you’ve been dreading but you still look fabulous, don’t worry).
- Today is all about you mum and I hope you enjoy your special 40th present as much as you like this card.
- Happy 40th! You’re a real inspiration and we’re all so blessed to have you in our life.
Cheeky 40th birthday messages for dad
Well, would you look at… the old man has officially hit his fourth decade. Of course, you can’t let that slide without commenting and we’ve come up with a few cheeky 40th birthday messages for dad.
- Did you know that turning 40 makes you 280 years old in dog years? Well, the more you know and happy 40th birthday dad!
- Dad, I probably don’t say this out loud as much as I should because we’re too busy poking fun at each other, but you really are one of the most important people to me and I hope you have the best 40th birthday.
- Congratulations on making it to 40 with only half of your beard going grey, that’s a real achievement!
- A whole 40 years of age, I know you’ve always been a big kid dad but maybe it is finally time to grow up, even just a little!
- Happy 40th birthday dad! For mum’s sake, I’m hoping you don’t party too hard today.
- Sending the biggest birthday wishes your way, dad, we’ll be keeping an eye out for the signs of a midlife crisis.
Lovely 40th birthday messages for partner
Whether it’s your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, or wife that shall be celebrating their 40th birthday soon enough, be sure to make them feel extra special by presenting them with a card complete with a personal message inside. Not sure quite what to say? We’re here to help you get started with these lovely 40th birthday messages for your partner:
- I’m so happy to be celebrating your 40th birthday by your side, happy birthday and you really do mean the world to me. Now onto your 50th!
- Happy 40th birthday darling, you make every day so special and now it’s your turn.
- Since the moment we met, I knew we’d be partners for life and look at us now celebrating your 40th together.
- I love you so much and I’m so grateful to be able to share so many memories with you including your 40th. Happy birthday sweetheart!
- Not sure how you do it, but you’ve not aged a day since we first got together and I’m beyond lucky to have you in my life. Happy birthday, my love!
- It’s your 40th birthday today and you deserve the absolute world, I love you.
Wise 40th birthday quotes
Let someone wiser than you take the reins with these 40th birthday quotes from famous thinkers and writers throughout history. The ideal message to include in your 40th birthday card if you’re not great with words yourself is just a quote about turning 40 and here are some of our top picks:
- “You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.” – George Burns
- “The first forty years of life give us the text: the next thirty supply the commentary.” – Arthur Schopenhauer
- “Youth has no age.” – Pablo Picasso
- “One of the many things nobody ever tells you about middle age is that it’s such a nice change from being young.” – Dorothy Canfield Fisher
- “Every man over forty is a scoundrel.” – George Bernard Shaw
- “Today is the oldest you’ve ever been, and the youngest you’ll ever be again.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
- “At 20 years of age the will reigns; at 30 the wit; at 40 the judgement.” – Benjamin Franklin
- “Middle age is when your age starts to show around your middle!” – Bob Hope
With all these 40th birthday greetings and ideas on what to write in a 40th birthday card to choose from, you might be starting to think the card you’ve picked out isn’t quite special enough. So, what better time to browse through our range of 40th birthday cards.
From sweet and sincere designs to hilariously funny cards featuring 40th birthday jokes, all available with speedy delivery. Check out some of our favourite designs below!
And don’t forget, you can send that special someone an extra-thoughtful gift with any of our cards – just add on anything from a bottle of gin or wine, to flowers or a luxury candle. For more ideas including the best milestone birthday messages along with gifting guides for every special occasion, check out the rest of the thortful blog.