Have you ever wondered whether your eye color could effect the way you are treated by others? Or how people perceive you?.
www.changemyeye.com decided to look into it further and here’s what we found.
There is a lot more to the human eye than just seeing. For example, research shows (white) blue-eyed children to be more behaviourally inhibited than their brown-eyed counterparts; among stuttering children, those with blue eyes are more severely dis-fluent in their speech; and there have been studies in the past which attempted to use eye-color as a medicinal prognostic factor. (Eye color has even been used to predict alcohol use).
Given the type of research results mentioned above you might not be surprised if I tell you now that a study – soon to appear in the Journal of Personality and Individual Differences – has detected that men with brown eyes are perceived as significantly more dominant than their blue-eyed peers. However, there is more to the finding than …well…first reaches the eye:
For their study, a team of Czech researchers, took similar neutral, non-smiling profile pictures of 40 men and 40 women between 19 to 26 years of age. Then they asked a group of 62 raters -31 of them male – to judge the photographs for perceived dominance (as well as attractiveness) on a simple 10-point scale.
As mentioned already, brown-eyed males were perceived as more dominant, but it is what followed next, that is more interesting:
To better understand what was driving the observed effect, the researchers now used photo-editing software to change the eye color in all pictures from blue to brown and vice versa. After having done so, they repeated the experiment with a new group of raters, but – somewhat surprisingly – the original dominance ratings remained relatively unaffected. Although eye color was a highly significant predictor of perceived dominance in the first rating session, switching eye colors for all pictures did not significantly affect whose pictures were perceived as dominant and whose weren’t.
So what is happening here? Evidently – and additional morphological research by the same research team supports this – eye color correlates with other facial features that raters use to judge dominance. For example, brown-eyed men in the above study had broader chins, thicker eye-brows which are closer together, and larger noses; all of which may be viewed as the actual drivers of higher dominance ratings. But yet there is more to learn here, since we should still want to know how this link between eye color and dominance signalling features comes about:
Is it simply that there is a strong genetic link between features that signal dominance and eye color? Unlikely, say the authors