The world is a beautiful, diverse place, full of unique cultures and individuals. One thing that truly sets people apart is their eye color. Most researchers believe that blue-eyed individuals may be more dominant among certain populations and less present in others. Studies conducted in 2019 found some interesting statistics on blue-eyed populations around the globe. Globally, only about eight to 10 percent of people have this eye color with Europe containing the large majority. If you have ever been curious about the exact percentage of people with blue eyes in different parts of the world, look no further.
Below is a list of the top six countries with the most blue-eyed people.
Where Do Blue Eyes Come From?
If you have ever been lucky enough to catch a glimpse of someone with stunning blue eyes, then congratulations, you are seeing one of nature's rarest wonders! Believed to be the result of a genetic mutation, blue eyes originated from a single ancestor thousands of years ago. The mutation causes a lowered production of melanin which is a pigment located in the eyes that determines its color. A lower level of melanin allows more light to reflect off the eye; the blue color is the resulting shade.
Originally, all human eyes were brown. However, approximately 6,000 to 10,000 years ago, the blue-eyed gene mutation spread. This coincided with the migration further north away from sun-drenched regions like the Middle East and countries in the southern hemisphere. Some speculate that this change in environment was a contributing factor. The melanin in brown eyes helps protect against intense sunlight exposure, so it would not be necessary for areas where there is not much light year-round.
Estonia – 89%
An estimated 89 percent of Estonians have blue eyes. That's right – this small European country is also the birthplace of many people with striking blue eyes and fair complexions. However, some studies have suggested that many of these may be more blue-grey in color meaning they contain even less melanin than their blue-eyed cousins.
Finland – 89%
Finland is a country with a rich history and unique culture. Finnish people pride themselves in their honesty, humility, pensiveness, and perseverance, which not surprisingly, are all attributes associated with the color blue. Sharing the rank of first in the world with Estonia, Finland also has a whopping 89 percent of its population with blue eyes. The stunning combination of blue eyes and sandy brown or blonde hair is much sought after in other countries, but very much the norm here.
Sweden – 78%
Known for their beautiful, pale blue eyes and milky-white skin, Swedes stand out wherever they go. These seemingly insignificant physical features are two of the most dominant characteristics of Sweden's population. They are also part of what makes Swedes so unique!
Iceland – 75.5%
Iceland is a beautiful country in the northern region of Europe, known for its many glaciers and stunning landscapes. Icelandic people demonstrate a strong national pride in preserving their culture. Additionally, Icelanders are very passionate about supporting their sports teams! With a 75.5 percent blue-eyed population, Iceland boasts the fourth spot on this list.
Netherlands – Approximately 61%
The Netherlands is one of the most interesting countries in the world, with a fascinating history and culture that sets it apart from many others. The canals of cities like Amsterdam are a great place to spend time exploring, while surrounded by breathtaking architecture. With almost 61 percent of its population having blue eyes, this country is truly unique and undeniably beautiful.
Denmark – Approximately 60%
Known for their beautiful fair hair and blue eyes, Denmark people stand out from other cultures. Sitting sixth on this list, Denmark's population is 60 percent blue-eyed. Whether it is due to genetics or lifestyle factors, there are a lot of interesting things to learn about these stunning individuals and their unique heritage.
Risks To Having Blue Eyes
People with blue eyes may need to be extra diligent when it comes to protecting themselves from harmful UV rays and blue light. Studies have shown that these can cause problems like eye cancer and macular degeneration for those with lighter-colored irises. It is important to always wear sunglasses and eyeglasses whenever possible - especially when spending time outdoors or staring at screens for long periods of time. Whether you have blue, brown, green, or hazel eyes, always take good care of your eyes, it will keep them healthy for years to come!
Countries With The Most Blue-Eyed People
|Rank||Country||Percentage of Population That is Blue-Eyed|
While eye color is not a defining characteristic of a person, it can be interesting to see how the distribution of different colors varies from place to place. Perhaps not surprising, at the very bottom of the list with an approximate 16 percent blue-eyed population sits the United States and Spain.