Eye color might be a factor in the success of a US presidential candidate. Less than 17% of people in the United States have blue eyes, but all but six of the first 43 presidents are believed to have had blue or gray eyes. Only five — Richard Nixon, Lyndon B. Johnson, Chester A. Arthur, Andrew Johnson and John Quincy Adams — had brown eyes. Nobody is quite sure as to why this is, although some people have suggested that blue eyes might be considered more attractive than brown, black or hazel eyes. It is important to note that there is a wide range of eye colors, and when it comes to presidents who served before color photography, their exact eye colors are not easy to determine.
More on eye color:
- Blue eyes are more susceptible to damage from ultraviolet light because they have less melanin than darker-colored eyes.
- A baby's irises gain pigment from the time they are born until they are about 9 months old. That is why many Caucasian newborns have blue or gray eyes that eventually turn brown or hazel.
- Actress Elizabeth Taylor was often said to have purple or violet eyes, though they were actually just deep blue eyes that appeared purple with the right makeup. Taylor's eyes were extraordinary for another reason: She had a genetic mutation that caused her to have double rows of eyelashes.