Iris colour develops during the first few months after birth. Melanin which is the colouring agent determines how dark the eyes will become. The less melanin expressed in the iris, the lighter a person’s eyes look. That goes both ways. Well sometimes, the concentration and distribution of melanin isn’t uniform, which leads to a condition known as Heterochromia. Yea, a condition where the eyes are of different colours. Let’s leave it as eye mismatch. It occurs also in animals such as cats, dogs and horses.
Heterochromia of the eye is of three kinds:
- Complete heterochromia, one iris is a different colour from the other, say one blue and one brown.
- Sectoral heterochromia, a part of one iris is a different color from its remainder. One iris has a splash of colour that’s different from its overall hue.
- Central heterochromia, having spikes of different colours radiating from the pupil, such as a blue iris with a golden-brown ring around the pupil.
Heterochromia is not necessarily a sign of an underlying health condition and is generally inherited from a parent. However, it is a common feature of several inherited genetic disorders.
From Waardenburg syndrome which causes children to experience hearing loss and premature graying of the hair to Neurofibromatosis which affects the nervous system and causes tumors to form on nerve tissue and inside the eye. Not forgetting Glaucoma, an eye conditions that damage the nerve that carries visual information from the eye to the brain as well as injuries done to the eye, such as a punch leading to bleeding within the eye or the presence of a foreign object in the eye or an infection or mild inflammation that affects only one eye. All these can cause an irregular iris colour or heterochromia.
However, a sudden onset of heterochromia could be the sign of an underlying medical condition, and a complete eye exam should be conducted by an ophthalmologist to rule out any serious causes.
On a more brighter scope, here are some celebrities with mismatched eyes.
- Hollywood star Kate Bosworth has one blue eye and the other being a much darker hazel.
- Henry Cavill, yea superman himself, part of his superpowers
- Alice Eve, the ‘She’s Out of My League’ and ‘Star Trek’ actress has a blue left eye, while her right is green.
- Max Scherzer, a baseball pitcher for the Washington Nationals has one eye being quite light while the other is very dark.
- Venus, a cat and an internet sensation with almost 1 Million Instagram followers and way more than that on facebook is not only 2-eyed but 2-faced.