Style and its little brother – fashion – both mean a lot for how we think about colour. We spend hours thinking about how clothes, accessories even hair will mesh or clash. A good understanding of colour is the key to a look that bursts with personality. With that said, none of us really know that much about the colour of our eyes!
The coloured part of the eye is called the iris. Its colour comes from pigmentation. Human eye colour comes from a combination of factors but it’s widely agreed that it originates in genetics. Specifically, there are three genes that determine eye colour. Two of these are very well understood. They account for the most common of eye colours – blue, green and brown.
The eye is one of the most complex parts of our body, second perhaps to the brain. We simply don’t know what causes some eye colours. Grey, hazel and multiple combinations are not fully understood. Sometimes we can tell; for example, cases of children having a different colour in each eye can be caused by trauma in the womb.
Then, there’s the fact that your eye colour can change. If you think of the iris like a muscle, this becomes a lot easier to understand. Like all other muscles, it expands and contracts depending on certain stimulus. This is what controls pupil size, but it also changes your eye colour. If you focus on a book, for example, your pupils get smaller, making the shade of your eyes lighter.
There are a couple of other ways that your eye colour can change. 10-15% of the adult, Caucasian population experience eye colour change with age: a brown can become a hazel (green and brown), a hazel can become a brown. This is nothing to worry about. By contrast, if your eye colour changes dramatically, you may have a problem. A quick change can indicate diseases, such as pigmentary glaucoma. If this happens, make sure to see an optician.
Well, there you have it: a few little tidbits about eye colour. If you’re looking for the perfect frames, you should always think about what colour your eyes are. You don’t want your iris to clash after all! That’s why, at Concept, we offer free style advice to every one of our patients.