"That shirt brings out your eyes."

I was wearing a medium-blue shirt the other day, and a co-worker told me that it “brought out my eyes”. I was wearing a watch with a metallic-blue face one day several years ago, and the same co-worker said the same thing.

I know she wasn’t hitting on me, so there must be some fashion thing about which I’m ignorant.

What does it mean to “bring out the eyes”? Being a guy, it’s not something I think of; but it seems to mean something to women. Is it something to do with reflected light from a shirt? How would a watch do it, being so far away from the face?

Hi there…

Yep. I get the same thing from men and women when I wear olive green, chartreuse, pea green…people say my eyes just POP!

(Yep, I have green eyes…)

It’s a compliment…yep, I would imagine that your blue eyes are just glowing, now!

I’m not sure how a watch would make your eyes pop out…

And you’re definately sure she’s not ‘hitting on you’ ? ? ?

Jeeez. I never heard of a watch bringing someones eyes out.

Tread carefully - if either of you are married that is !

I don’t why this is but if you wear a shirt that matches your eyes, it really emphasizes the color of your eyes. I don’t think it has anything to do with reflected light, I think it’s a cognitive effect. The brain probably tries to somehow tie together objects of a color if that color is prominent. Same thing happens if you wear a necktie that has just flecks of a color, and the shirt happens to be the same color as the flecks. One says that the shirt “brings out” the flecks in the tie.

I remember some psychological thriller movie I saw once where this guy had been spying on this woman that he knew but not very well. They were talking and he said, “Why don’t you wear your blue dress?”
“How did you know I have a blue dress?”
“Every woman has a dress that matches her eyes.”

Are you the one I saw on the Sally Jesse Raphael show? (1.3MB AVI)

“If two hues are opposite each other on the color wheel they are considered to be complementary colors. When used together in a design they make each other seem brighter and more intense. (example: red and green)”

So if you wear an orange shirt, your blue eyes will look more intense.

People who are aware of this fashion trick will often buy clothing that matches their eyes.

If you are a person that has eyes that can sometimes be a bit different in hue than the day before (or the last time you really looked), your clothing can “influence” the color of your eyes. For example, I have eyes that can sometimes be aqua blue and sometimes be more of a bland gray. If they’re blue one day and I wear a certain type of gray shirt, my eyes will find a balance with my shirt, seeming to change color a bit. Always dress to compliment your eyes and your natural tone - it’s a good way to tie your appearance together.

What about us dark coloured eyes people?
Can anything make our eyes pop out?
We have to wear dark coloured shirts? Or does the effect not work?

OP, you must have orange eyes, then.

A good smack up the back o’ the head can make anyone’s eyes pop out, if it’s hard enough.

I don’t know about black eyes, but I would think that whites and blacks would work well for clothing. It’s all about colors that compliment each other. Colorful-eyed people are luckier, I guess…

Hm. Maybe I should buy more blue shirts?

You could answer, “A grapefruit spoon really brings out my eyes, but it hurts a hell of a lot.”

I could get away with murder, then—I have brown eyes, and not one article of brown clothing!

Except that she’d expect me to say something like that.

[sub]Filing it away for future use.[/sub]


A statement like the OP is definitely a compliment when coming from a woman. What’s your next step???

A lot of people with blue eyes have eyes that vary in color a bit day by day, depending on what you’re wearing. If you wear something blue, then that will really help to emphasize the blue in your eyes; they almost seem to pick some of that blue up.

I’ve had people remark on some shirt’s color bringing out the color of my eyes. To simply “bring out my eyes,” I get a shirt two sizes too small and button it all the way to the throat.

Actually a tough GQ, being psychological in my opinion. I’m no expert on perception of colour, perhaps a camouflage specialist might be knowledgeable, but this thread’s been around long enough for me to chirp in with my observations. I believe a lot of our colour perceptions are subconscious, probably because they are so complex. Outdoors after sunset there is a range of light where there is almost no colour and everything is seen in grey and black, for example. Another example is, if you are painting walls with strong colours you can see funny things like (a random example vaguely from memory) a thick brushstroke of brown on a yellow wall will be perceived as purple. If you move in close and look at it, completely shielding the yellow out of your vision the brown perception will return. Anyone else notice this?

Anyway, point being that it’s all perception and mental processing. Everyone always notices eyes (“fight or flight”), consciously and subconsciously, and, when something else catches their eye, a watch or shirt, that clicks with their “catching” of your eyes, it is noticed and remarkable in a small talk kind of way, sort of “huh”. To try and sum up this blithering… people rarely notice your watch or shirt or whatever unless something about it clicks. Because they always notice your eyes they will notice a watch or shirt or tie or whatever because something about the colour clicks. That they would remark on it is just friendly small talk.