Blue-eyed men prefer blue-eyed women, apparently because eye color can
help reveal whether their partner has been faithful, researchers said on
"Before you request a paternity test, spend a few minutes looking at
your child's eye color," Bruno Laeng and colleagues at the University of
Tromso in Norway said in the study.
Under the laws of genetics, two parents with blue eyes will always have
blue-eyed children, it said. So a blue-eyed man can know his blue-eyed
wife or partner has cheated on him if their child has brown eyes.
"Blue-eyed men may have unconsciously learned to value a physical trait that can facilitate
recognition of own kin," the scientists said in the journal Behavioral
Ecology and Sociobiology.
The scientists asked 88 students to rate the attractiveness of models
based on pictures manipulated
so that half of them had blue eyes and the other half had brown eyes. The
blue-eyed men in the group showed a preference for blue-eyed women.
But brown-eyed men, who cannot find any clues about paternity from a
child's eye color, had no preferences by eye color. Women showed no
preference for brown- or blue-eyed men, regardless their own eye color.
A quarter of children born to two brown-eyed parents who have both
brown and blue-eye genes among their ancestors will have blue eyes. The
rest will be brown.
In a second study, 443 young adults of both sexes were asked about the
eye color of their partners -- blue-eyed men were also the group with the
highest proportion of partners with the same eye color.