Were Elizabeth Taylor's Eyes Actually Violet?

You always want what you can't have, and in this case, we want Elizabeth Taylor's eyes. Once considered the most beautiful woman in the world, Elizabeth Taylor was the definition of Hollywood glamour onscreen, and off, and fans all over the globe could not get enough of her sparkling eyesThe Australian film critic, David Stratton, recalls being taken aback by the color of her eyes during a film premiere in 1973, writing (via Yahoo!), "I was ushered into her presence at the official reception and found myself transfixed by her famous violet eyes. I have never seen eyes of that color before or since and I don't believe cinema goers were able to appreciate how remarkable they were." But were Elizabeth Taylor's eyes actually violet?

According to LiveScience, Taylor's eyes were the real deal. "There are various shades of blues and grays, with many in-between. Violet may have been her typical pigmentation," Norman Saffra, chairman of the ophthalmology department at the Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., told Life's Little Mysteries (via LiveScience). "It's possible to have that eye color[,] it all depends on the amount of melanin." Ultimately, the appearance of the iris depends on how much of the natural pigment melanin it contains, which is determined by genetics. Essentially, Taylor's eyes had a very specific, and rare, amount of melanin.

Elizabeth Taylor's eye color always drew attention

Elizabeth Taylor often chose to wear blue or purple clothing and accessories to bring out their color. Saffra noted that eye color can also appear to change based on the eye's light absorption, whether it was from the sun or the reflection of clothing. In addition to her unique eye color, the award-winning actress was also born with distichiasis, a genetic disorder that produces an extra row of lush eyelashes (double the eyelashes!), further accentuating her eyes.

Born in London in 1932, her family moved to America before the start of World War II, and by 1942, Taylor had landed her first acting role in the film, One Born Every Minute (via People)Two years later, she became a breakout star in the 1944 film National Velvet and shortly after, she became the first woman to make $1 million for one movie with Cleopatra. Throughout her career, she won two Academy Awards and received several other nominations, and according to CNN, she redefined celebrity and "was as pervasive a presence in American culture as President Eisenhower, Mickey Mantle, Elvis Presley, and Marilyn Monroe."

While Taylor's eye color has captivated and enraptured audiences for decades, it's only one small part of her legacy that will live on.