6 Rare and Unique Eye Colors

Updated on April 6, 2017

The eyes certainly are windows to the soul, and if you know anything about eyes or windows, you are aware that they come in many different tints and colors!

Most commonly, you see brown, blue, or hazel eyes when you look at the people around you, but some people, whether it be luck or a medical condition, wind up with a really cool and rare eye color. What are the rarest eye colors and how do they happen?

The Rarest Eye Colors and How They Occur

Eye Color
Cause(s)
Black
An abundance of melanin
Red/Pink
Albinism and blood leaking into the iris
Amber
A little melanin with a large amount of lipochrome
Green
A little melanin, a bunch of lipochrome and Rayleigh scattering of light
Violet
Lack of pigment mixed with light reflecting off of red blood vessels
Heterochromia
Increased or decreased pigmentation in the iris

Did You Know?

Only 2% of the world's population has green eyes! Talk about a rarity! Next time you see someone rocking natural greens, let them in on this cool fact.

Source

So, Which Is the Most Unique?

There really isn’t a way to determine exactly which eye color is the rarest, but if you have never seen any of the ones listed below, just know that it’s because it’s rare. This list is in no particular order, and if your eye color made the cut, consider yourself a gem.

1. Black Eyes

Have you ever seen someone with eyes that seem black as night? Although they appear black, they are really just a very, very dark brown, which is caused by an abundance of melanin. You may only be able to determine the pupil from the iris when looking at the eye with a bright light!

2. Red/Pink Eyes

Two major conditions cause a red or pinkish eye color: albinism and blood leaking into the iris. Although albinos tend to have very, very light blue eyes due to a lack of pigment, some forms of albinism can cause eyes to appear red or pink.

Amber eyes are a beautiful honey color!
Amber eyes are a beautiful honey color! | Source

3. Amber Eyes

This beautiful, golden eye color is often confused with hazel. The difference is that hazel eyes have brown and green in them, while amber eyes are a solid, uniform color. With a little melanin and a whole lot of lipochrome, eyes of this shade almost appear to be glowing! A few different animals have this eye color, but it’s a true rarity in humans.

4. Green Eyes

Very little melanin, a burst of lipochrome, and the Rayleigh scattering of light that reflects off the yellow stroma can make for a variety of shades of green. With only two percent of the world’s population having green eyes, it’s definitely rare!

Pretty purple eyes naturally occur because of a lack of pigment, but are very rare.
Pretty purple eyes naturally occur because of a lack of pigment, but are very rare. | Source

5. Violet Eyes

Oh, what a purplish blue! This color is most often found in people with albinism. It is said that you cannot truly have violet eyes without albinism. Mix a lack of pigment with the red from light reflecting off of blood vessels in the eyes, and you get this beautiful violet!

6. Heterochromia

This is not a set color, but rather a rare eye condition where either

  • one iris is a different color than the other iris (David Bowie!), or
  • there is a spot in an iris that is an entirely different color than the rest of the iris due to pigmentation differences.

It’s quite an unusual type of eye coloring that some individuals have, and while many people wear contacts to make their eye color more uniform, I think it’s beautiful, and such a rarity should be flaunted!

What Determines the Color of Your Eyes?

Many people will argue that it is purely genetic, which, for the most part, has been found to be true; however, there’s still not a lot known about the genes that determine a person’s eye color. We do know that rare eye color genes are recessive, so perhaps it’s just a matter of the two right peoples’ genes coming together to bring forth the phenomena.

Now, what we do know about eye color determination is that it involves two pigments (along with how the iris scatters lights): melanin (brown pigment) and lipochrome (a yellow pigment). When you see someone with light, blue eyes, it means there is an absence of melanin, or brown pigmentation.

Originally, we all had brown eyes. But a genetic mutation affecting the OCA2 gene in our chromosomes resulted in the creation of a 'switch,' which literally 'turned off' the ability to produce brown eyes.

— Professor Hans Eiberg, Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of Copenhagen

Did We All Have Brown Eyes?

It is believed that the human race started out having brown eyes and due to genetic mutations, other colors came about. Perhaps this is why brown is the most common (but no less beautiful)!

So many people who have perfect vision choose to wear contacts just to have a rare eye color so if you made the cut, consider yourself lucky!

10 Things You Didn't Know About Your Eyes

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    • profile image

      Gummy 6 days ago

      I have green/blue eyes. They change depending what color my cloths are (ex. green shirt= green eyes).

      My favorite color is also green.

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      R. 7 days ago

      Blue eyes with central heterochromia being a gold ring.

      From Estonia by the way :)

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      Heyy 7 days ago

      My eyes change colour with the weather. one hot days they are brown, but on cooler days, they are green. I know that with time your eyes do eventually change colour, but mine can change within a few minutes. for example when I come out of a cold pool, my eyes are said to be green, whereas when I get out of a hot shower, they are a deep brown. It's kinda weird and my dad has Heterochromia, so it might have something to do with that.

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      lady 9 days ago

      I have teal eyes with a gold dot is that rare?!

    • profile image

      Dude 9 days ago

      I like to think i have brown eyes but every day it's more difficult to see the brown.

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      You don't wanna know 13 days ago

      My eyes are green with the yellow tint. I RARE I 2% OF DA WORLD. Poor brown-eyed peps. So jealous. I know that the rares colours are the most beautiful ( in most cases )

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      me 4 weeks ago

      I have blue ish grey eyes but one has an amber line running from the pupil down

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      Marionette girl 4 weeks ago

      I have brown and dark gray eyes

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      MK 4 weeks ago

      @Arabella Heterochromia is a a mutation. Not an eye color. There are different types like one eye a different color than the other. Heterochromia can be any combination of eye colors.

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      Kyra 6 weeks ago

      What about sliver/Grey? My parents say i have sliver eyes instead of any of these.. Infact i don't even see the sliver/grey eyes mentioned often, I haven't even seen another person with these type of eyes! My parents have blue and green eyes so this is so strange! -Kyra

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      Arabella 6 weeks ago

      AHA FINALLY FIGURED MY EYE COLOUR OUT. I HAVE HETROCHEMIA OR HOWEVER U SPELL IT

    • profile image

      abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz 7 weeks ago

      When everyone here is telling their eye colour is rare/getting diffrent colors then their parents and im just sitting here like "... well i've got dark brown eyes, nothing rare about me :/"

    • profile image

      Aaaaeeeesssaaeaeswda 7 weeks ago

      I have black eyes, Im a nightmare muahahahahahahahaha Eh

    • profile image

      Bernie 7 weeks ago

      I have purple eyes with the Dark green ring, but none of my relatives or even ancestors had it, my parents are both brown eyes. my siblings have the same colors as my parents.

      People saying that i am son of darkness! hahaha stupid!

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      Vera 2 months ago

      My eyes are green. The eyes of my mother, father and two brothers are brown, and the eyes of my grandparents are all brown and blue. I'm the only one who has green eyes.

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      skye 2 months ago

      i have a muddy blue if u reserch it says its the most unseen eye color in the world and my parents have brown and blue ayes so theres no chance o me getting this color but i have ive beingg in magazins and ellen degenerouis's show all because of my eyes thx god

    • profile image

      Hey 2 months ago

      My eyes are definetely black. I can barely see my pupil

    • profile image

      Julia 2 months ago

      Hello! I recently discovered that my eyes are not hazel like everyone says. My mom,dad,grandma,grandpa and brother have blue eyes but I don't. Mine are actually brown in the area around the pupil, green on the rest of it, and they have bright blue flecks throughout them. I have done so much research but I can't find a reasoning for this or a time where this has happened to someone else.

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      Mollytheamer 2 months ago

      My eyes Change Color and yes I know through the years your eyes change color but I mean my eyes can be brown one second and green a couple minutes later

    • profile image

      Jacqueline 2 months ago

      I have a lite brown/amberish color in my left eye and a dark brown color in my right eye

    • profile image

      Asha nyx 2 months ago

      David bowie didn’t have hetrochromia he had another condtion that wouldnt allow one of his puplis to dilate / constrict which he got during a fight.

    • profile image

      Jb 2 months ago

      I have green eyes. My dad had light blue and my mother had brown eyes. Both of my kids have blue eyes.

    • profile image

      Olivia 3 months ago

      My sister and I have green eyes! My dad has blue eyes and my mom has brown eyes!

    • profile image

      3 months ago

      I've been trying to work out if my eyes are hazel or green. I've looked at a lot of websites and they said stuff like, "green is dominant over blue". My dad has blue eyes and my mum has green, so I figured I must have green eyes.

      People tell me that when I turn to a certain angle my eyes look yellow.

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      JJ 3 months ago

      I have a blue grey eye color. My eyes are a navy blue that fade into light blue then grey. I also have a little bit of an orange yellow near the pupil. Right next to the pupil there is some sort of swirl design on both eyes. It's a small portion of the swirl though and I don't know why. On colder days my eyes have a bit of green instead of the orange yellow color. I thought it was interesting that I have orange in my eyes when it's warm and green when it's cold.

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      Jeff 3 months ago

      Fun fact, David Bowie didn't have heterochromia one pupil was damaged when he was young and stayed enlarged.

    • profile image

      Rukayya 3 months ago

      I am lebanese. My two brothers and i have green and yellow eyes but our parents are both brown-eyed how is this possible

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      Monica 3 months ago

      I have hazel eyes, I know this now, I didn't for a really long time, they get lighter and brighter, or as someone referred to them as 'firey', when I get mad or excited, and more brown when I'm feeling down or just relaxed!

      But I'm unsure about my husband, I always thought they were blue, and our youngest of 3 children has what my husband's sister call'crystal baby blues', are 2 oldest have brown eyes like my Mom and my husband's Dad, but my husband says his eyes are green when I always thought they were blue, so I looked deep into his eyes and they look like the color of the sea on Blue Lagoon', a greenish blue. Can you tell me whatever color that is? Please and thank you?!

    • profile image

      Katie 3 months ago

      i have a leaf pure green eyes it a complete different color then you see online

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      Jessica 3 months ago

      When you don't have the same color eyes as your parents, it's likely that you inherited a recessive eye color. If both parents have brown but you have blue, then each parent must've had a blue recessive eye color. Brown is dominant, so if one parent has brown dominant and another has brown dominant blue recessive the child will have brown eyes.

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      Banana 3 months ago

      I have turquoise I know it's not up there but I think it's rare

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      Sarah 3 months ago

      When I was in elementary school, I never really knew what eye color I had. I was always told hazel, but it wasn't until I was in fifth grade until I realized I had green eyes and the rarety of them.

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      Violet 3 months ago

      My eyes are amber

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      gianna 3 months ago

      My eye color changes. Tbh im hella happy that i made the cut. My eyes are almost always green and hazel. Theyre sometimes brown too [; . But my mom has blue eyes , so why dont i?

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      Audra 3 months ago

      I went to grad school with many middle eastern and asian people... they used to say my eyes were like water... blue, green, grey, clear... they couldn't decide and it depended on what was around, colors I wore, mood etc.

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      tiffany 3 months ago

      i have black eyes. At first i found it confusing because everyone has a visible black iris at the center while i cant see mine. And i just found out that everyone has a common brown eye color and my black eye where really rare!

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      Anna 3 months ago

      I have blue eyes with a green iris ring, so depending on what i'm wearing my eyes can look blue or green!

    • profile image

      Henry 3 months ago

      I have green eyes

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      Amber 4 months ago

      I have blue eyes, ashy red blonde hair and very pale skin. My eyes have also looked grey, very dark blue, and slightly green or hazel around the Iris.

    • profile image

      Isaac 4 months ago

      I have very beautiful black eyes

    • profile image

      chris 4 months ago

      i have amber gold eyes alot of people stop me and say how awesome my eyes are some say i have eyes from the movie twilight.

    • profile image

      hoor 4 months ago

      i have greenish grey eyes, fair complexion and black hairs

    • profile image

      Zen 4 months ago

      I have naturally purple eyes (I don't have albinism) I have very dark blue eyes what seem purple. I think violet is more rare than green. I have seen atleast 10 people with green eyes and only 2 people with violet..(me and Elizabeth Taylor)

    • profile image

      A person 4 months ago

      What does it mean when you have a eye that I have not found a color for yet it's a orangey brown color that I have looked every where and still can't find it please help.

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      Bree Austin 4 months ago

      I have one eye blue and the other eye grey but the one with blue has a little bit of grey and the one with grey has a little bit of blue

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      Kristiane 4 months ago

      David Bowie did not have Heterochromia. His eye was hit under a fight, and that resulted in the breakage of the iris, which made his eyes look different.

    • profile image

      Tammy 4 months ago

      So what does it mean when your eyes change up to 5 different colors?.

    • profile image

      Stormy 4 months ago

      I Have Hazel Eyes Mixed With Amber Is That Rare?

    • profile image

      Emily 4 months ago

      I have black eyes and I am not an American I am a Nigerian ✌

    • profile image

      Cilian 4 months ago

      My eyes are blue,gray, green I think its rare because I don't have a main Color

      In my eye

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      Daria 5 months ago

      My eyes change from brown to Amber eyes in the son and from brown they go a little bit black

    • profile image

      Mila 5 months ago

      I have green eyes. I also have a friend who has green eyes, but she has an amber star shaped spot around her pupil!

    • profile image

      Arhleen 5 months ago

      Amber eyes are so beautiful!

    • profile image

      ASS 5 months ago

      Hi I'd like to know more about butts,thank you.

    • profile image

      Stormy 5 months ago

      I Think My Hazel Eyes Look Like There Gonna Turn Amber

    • profile image

      LisaPhilips 5 months ago

      My daughter always tells me my eyes are amber with it's of gray and gold,but I see a dark Amber with a hint of copper ,is that even possible?

    • profile image

      Random Person 5 months ago

      Is it possible to have pale green eyes?

    • profile image

      Aculina 5 months ago

      I have Grey/Blue/Green eyes... ( Bit of a mouth full!) My optician said there is no set colour for my eyes! They are apparently quite rare!

    • profile image

      Sammy 6 months ago

      I'm a brunette and I have green eyes

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      Unknown Female 6 months ago

      I have dirty blonde hair, white skin with freckles (not too much)

      and no, im not a white girl. i may look like one but I'm half hispanic and half arabic

      okay, my eye color has green and blue mixed together, you can also see a bit of yellow towards the center and a LITTLE bit of grey.

      My mom's side of the family are all hispanic/latino but my grandma's past family had grey and blue eyes and my dad's past family only had blue eyes. my grandma said that there aren't anyone in the family tree who had green eyes. how did i obtain green eyes? was it pure luck or something?

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      Billy jean 6 months ago

      My eyes are naturally violet and pink because i have heterochromia

    • profile image

      Nicklas 7 months ago

      I have Yellow eyes and people are always looking intense at me, its weird

    • profile image

      Anushka 7 months ago

      My dad has black eyes.

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      ElysetheEevee 8 months ago

      My husband has black eyes, my mom has pure bright amber, so glowing I can't even find a good enough pic to compare. She also has very thick limbal rings that are a darker green, which my central heterochromatic brothers and I were lucky enough to likely keep for life (we like to joke that we got half and half from out parents: half blue from dad for outer iris and half yellow from mom on inside with all of us inheriting thick green limbal ring). I've been told the hue of blue with the pale yellow in the center makes my eyes look anywhere from nearly white with dark limbal ring, to gray, to super bright blue, to even green. I can't even give a solid answer on my true eye color to be honest....

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      Angela 11 months ago

      Is there such a eye color as light brown eyes?

    • profile image

      Stevie 14 months ago

      I have straw berry blond hair and green eyes my family all had dark hair blue eye darker completion I have 4 kids one has reddish brown hair and golden yellow eyes I find it all interesting

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      Dixie Blue 16 months ago

      @Matt

      I was the same. I heard that it's because there is no light in the womb to activate the melanin and that they can turn darker after the baby is born. Some people with very dark eyes have a bluish ring around their iris and there a theory that it's leftover (darn, I can't find the word). I don't have that but my eyes are Brown and they used to be blue.

      As for your hair, that's VERY normal. Hair can change as you get older, it's happened to many of my family members. Some go dark to light but most go light to dark.

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      Matt 16 months ago

      Asking my mom I found out I was born blue-eyed blond but later they turned out to be that much dark as I said in the earliest post.

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      Matt 16 months ago

      I have black eyes, very white skin, black hair and reddish-brown beard.

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      Millie 18 months ago

      I have one grey-green eye and one grey-blue eye with flecks of yellow, lighter blues, greens, and brown/amber throughout.

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      Jamie 21 months ago

      I just met someone with yellow eyes. So beautiful. Is she the only one

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