red hair, blue eyed baby girl with her mom

Baby Calculator: Predict What Your Baby Will Look Like

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by Maya Gosztyla |

Predicting what your baby will look like isn’t that tough with a little bit of information about mom and dad.

Try it out by making selections in Experienced Mommy’s Baby Predictor and click “See Results”!

If you have questions about the choices or how things are calculated, read on and feel free to comment.

Why can’t the calculator provide exact predictions?

For nearly all traits, the Experienced Mommy’s Baby Predictor outputs several possibilities along with how likely each one may be. You may be wondering why we can’t tell you exactly what traits your baby will have. There are two main reasons for this.

First of all, despite what you were likely taught in high school biology, very few traits are determined by only a single gene. Even simple characteristics, like eye color, can have dozens of different genes that play a role. This makes it very complicated to make predictions, since we would have to know both parents’ gene variants for all of these different genes.

The second reason is that many traits are influenced by both genes and the environment. For example, while your DNA plays a role in determining how tall you will grow, this can also differ depending on other factors such as nutrition. For that reason, we can’t know for sure how tall someone will be just based on their genes alone.

Certain populations related by ethnicity, ancestory or geographic location also tend to share common genetic characteristics. Because of commonly shared genetics a population may have a greater or lesser tendency toward a particular trait than the typical average.

Despite the uncertainty, there is extensive statistical data that makes it possible to suggest probabilities. For example, if both parents have blue eyes, your baby is very likely to have blue eyes as well, so the calculator gives a 99% chance of this. However, it’s still possible that your baby will not have blue eyes! Our calculator can tell you what’s likely to happen, but not what’s certain to happen.

Eye Color

What Color Will My Baby’s Eyes Be?

It’s hard to be certain! Scientists used to think that eye color was controlled by a single gene that controlled the production of melanin. Melanin is the pigment that determines your eye color: people with more melanin have brown eyes, while people with less melanin have blue or green eyes. However, we now know that at least 10 different genes are involved in melanin production, making it nearly impossible to predict a baby’s eye color based on their parents. That’s why the Experienced Mommy’s Baby Predictor tells you the probability of each eye color; no one can be 100% sure.

red hair, blue eyed baby girl with her mom

Which parent determines the eye color of baby?

The genes that control eye color are not located on a sex chromosome, so both parents contribute equally to the baby’s eye color.

What eye color is dominant?

It’s a common misconception that brown eyes are dominant to blue and green eyes. In reality, it’s much more complicated! Because eye color is controlled by multiple genes, no color is truly dominant over the rest.

What is the rarest eye color?

Green! It’s estimated that only 2% of the world’s population has naturally green eyes. Outside of the “normal” eye colors, there are also rarer colors caused by genetic conditions such as albinism.

Can brown-eyed parents have a blue-eyed baby?

Yes! Because eye color is controlled by several different genes, it is entirely possible (though unlikely) for brown-eyed parents to have a blue-eyed baby. Conversely, blue-eyed parents can also have a brown-eyed baby.

Are all babies born with grey eyes?

Not always: babies of African or Asian descent are often born with dark eyes. However, it’s true that many Caucasian babies are born with blue or grey eyes that darken over time. This is because melanocytes, the cells that produce pigment in your eyes, are activated by light. When a newborn is exposed to light for the first time at birth, their melanocytes start producing a dark pigment called melanin, which takes several months to build up. Your baby’s eyes should reach their final color by the time he or she is six to nine months old.

What is the most attractive eye color?

According to one study, blue-eyed men tend to find blue-eyed women more attractive, while brown-eyed men have no preference. Women also seem to have no eye color preference.

How rare are purple eyes?

Back in 2005, there was an internet myth about mysterious, pale-skinned people with purple eyes. This has been thoroughly debunked. There is no documented proof of a person with naturally purple eyes. Even actress Elizabeth Taylor, whose beautiful violet eyes were admired by many, actually had dark blue eyes that were made to look purple by her makeup and clothing.

Is is true that everyone really has brown eyes?

Technically, yes! Everyone’s iris (the colored area surrounding the pupil) is some shade of brown, depending on how much melanin you have (darker brown means more melanin). However, if you have less melanin, an optical illusion called the Tyndall effect causes your eyes to appear blue or green. This is similar to why the sky appears blue!

Why are hazel eyes so hard to predict?

You may have noticed that our Baby Predictor is less certain of your baby’s eye color when either parent has hazel eyes. This is because hazel is intermediate between green eyes and brown eyes. As a result, a person with hazel eyes has some gene variants that increase the chance of brown eyes, and other gene variants that increase the chance of green or blue eyes. Since any of these variants are equally likely to be passed down, a parent with hazel eyes can have a baby with a variety of possible eye colors.

Do black or grey eyes exist?

Eyes that appear black are actually very dark brown due to expressing high levels of the pigment melanin. This is common among people from eastern Asia.

In contrast, grey eyes appear to be distinct from other colors. Like blue eyes, grey eyes have very little melanin, causing them to appear light in color. However, grey-eyed people have more of a protein called collagen in their eyes. This changes the way that light reflects from their eyes, resulting in a grey appearance. Grey eyes are fairly rare, but have been observed in people from Northern and Eastern Europe.

Hair Color

What color will my baby’s hair be?

Maya Gosztyla
Maya has a B.S. degree in Neuroscience and Molecular Genetics. She is a science writer and editor specializing in neuroscience education.

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