There is a popular belief that light eyes are more sensitive to light and sunlight, but what truth is there in this?

The part of the eye that is colorful is called iris and its tone is determined by the genetic load of each person and the amount of granulocytes that make it up.

Between light eyes and dark eyes there are few significant differences beyond the physical aspect that they suggest, but is light sensitivity one of them?

En Área Oftalmológica Avanzada We invite you to discover below if it is true, or not, that clear eyes are more sensitive to light.

light eyes are more sensitive

What is the difference between light and dark eyes?

The main difference between light eyes, such as blue or green eyes, and dark eyes is the amount of color granules that make up the iris, dark eyes obviously have greater amount of pigments than light eyes.

Apart from this detail, the functioning of the ocular structure is exactly the same regardless of the color of the iris. 

Are there more differences? Yes, and perhaps the most important is that light eyes respond more quickly to the effect of the drops to dilate the pupil.

This is because the fluid passes through the clear iris faster because it has less tissue and less pigment. Therefore, the drops reach the pupil faster.

In short, the main difference between light eyes and dark eyes is the amount of pigment or melanin that contain.

Can light pass through the pigment and cause greater sensitivity in light eyes? Let's find out!

Are light eyes more sensitive to light?

Yes, light eyes are more sensitive to sun and light than dark eyes, and the reason for this famous premise or popular belief has nothing to do with the iris or the pupil.

The explanation lies in the morphology of the retina, specifically in a part of the eye structure which is known by the name of pigmentary epithelium


Now that we know that it is not a myth that light eyes are more sensitive to light, it is time to explain why it happens.

To understand the reason for the sensitivity of light eyes to light it is necessary to talk about retinal functioning and of the pigmentary epithelium and the function fulfilled by both structures.

The pigmentary epithelium is the part of the retina that is composed of pigment cells, which are responsible for absorbing light to prevent it from bouncing inside the eye.

Not all people have the same amount of pigment or melanin, since this factor, as we mentioned at the beginning, is determined by the genetic load of each person.

Now, when there is a lot of pigment, the light of the eye is absorbed correctly and when there is little pigment the light is reflected inside the eye and saturates the receptors.

Therefore, what determines that light eyes are more sensitive to light is the amount of melanin that is in the pigment epithelium and not in the iris.

The amount of pigment in a person is determined by their genetic load, which defines it globally both in the eye and throughout the human body.

Thus, if there is little melanin in the iris, it is expected that there is little pigment in the retinal epithelium.  

How to protect light eyes from sunlight?

The intense light of the sun's rays can greatly affect the light eyes, and also the dark eyes, so it is important protect yourself properly with sunglasses during sun exposure.

La sensitivity to light or photophobia It is a very annoying symptom and the sunlight can cause irreparable damage in the cornea getting to generate a condition known as solar retinopathy.

To protect light eyes from sunlight it is necessary to wear sunglasses every day, regardless of whether the weather is sunny or cloudy.

The most important hours in which sunglasses must be used are from 11: 00 to 17: 00 hours.

Another important aspect to take into account to protect clear eyes from light is to use quality sunglasses with filters that provide a light filtration of between 3% and 100% and a UV filter of, at least, 99%.

If you are going to drive with sunglasses, the ideal is that the light protection is minimum of 8%.

The color of the lens of the sunglasses does not have to be related to protection. In the market there are glasses with very dark lenses and with a very low power of light filtration and vice versa.

Therefore, when buying your glasses, pay more attention to the lens filter than to the color of the lens.

The filters of the sunglasses are raised from degree to degree being 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 where 0 is the least and 4 is the maximum.

El grade 3 It is ideal to protect the eyes during a very sunny beach day and the grade 4 It is recommended for athletes and for those who frequent mountainous areas.

Also, not all colors of crystals are indicated for all activities. We recommend that you avoid blue and pink tones, as they can distort the actual tones of the images when doing important activities such as driving.

After discovering that clear eyes are more sensitive to light, we hope that with these keys you can adequately protect your vision. Do you need more info? Contact our professionals Área Oftalmológica Avanzada, We will be delighted!

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Light eyes are more sensitive to light. Myth or reality?
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Light eyes are more sensitive to light. Myth or reality?
Is it true that lighter eyes are more sensitive to light and sun? We reveal how much is true in that statement.
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Área Oftalmológica Avanzada
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