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Reston   (703) 485-2148 Leesburg   (703) 777-1244
Reston   (703) 485-2148 Leesburg   (703) 777-1244

Can Eyes Change Color Over Time?

eye color changeNo matter how you feel about your eye color, there’s no denying that you’ve thought about what you might look like with a different eye color.  Maybe you even did a little experimenting, changing your eye color with contacts for Halloween or just on a whim.  Whether you’re happy with your eye color or desperate for a change, you’ve probably found yourself wondering…

Can eye color change over time?

If you’ve ever thought that your eye color changed when you were happy or angry – or that your eye color changed from when you were a teenager – it turns out that it’s not in the eye of the beholder.  New research suggests that eye color doesn’t really change over the course of our lives; in fact, scientists indicate that after our first year of life, our eye color becomes permanent.

That’s bad news for those of us who wish we would wake up with a different eye color – but it’s interesting to note that that’s not the final word on your changing eye color.

According to Ivan Schwab, a professor of ophthalmology at the University of California, Davis, eye color can change slightly with age, or during exceptional cases.  These include puberty and pregnancy, where the pigment of the eye can darken thanks to fluctuating hormonal changes.

So why do you think your eye color changes with your mood or seemingly overnight?  There’s a rather simple explanation:

  • Bloodshot eyes:  If you only got a few hours of sleep or you’re bleary-eyed after a big night out with friends, that red all around your eyes can leave your eye color looking much more pronounced.  It’s certainly not the most desirable way to heighten your eye color.
  • The color of your clothes:  Ever notice that when you’re wearing certain shirt colors, your eye color just seems to pop?  This is especially true when you’re wearing a color similar to your eyes.  In addition to clothing, your eye makeup can pronounce your primary eye color or bring out other colors in your eyes.  For example, if you have brown eyes and you wear blue eye shadow, the brown of your eyes will become much more vibrant, as they’re opposite colors on the color wheel.

If you want your eye color to remain bright and vibrant, it’s important to go to regular check-ups with your ophthalmologist.  Schedule an appointment with Dr. Jacqueline Griffiths at NewView Eye Center in Reston, VA (also serving the greater Washington, DC area) today. Simply fill out the form in the top left corner or call 703-834-9777.