Does Your Age Affect How You See This Optical Illusion?

Science or Perception

A scientific study was conducted as to how a person sees this optical illusion.

“My Wife and My Mother-in-Law.” Wikimedia Commons

Does your view of the picture depend on your age? The study included 393 participants: 242 males, 141 females.  People over thirty saw the older woman first.  However, those under thirty saw the younger woman first.  Even though this optical illusion shows two images of a younger woman and an older woman, our perception and our cultural bias affects the way it is viewed. Do our perceptions affect the way we view pictures?


Age Affects Perceptions Perception and Illusion

A person who is younger might see the younger the woman because our culture favors the young. A person, who is young, might see the younger person because young people are bombarded with the image of youth.  Also, the youth is given much attention. An older person might see the older woman first in the picture because the viewer might feel older, and the image of the older woman comes to
the foreground.  Perceptions change the older we get.  As people get older, however, cultural biases remain.



If researchers would have taken a larger population of women compared to a man’s view of the picture, would the results be the same?

Men’s Perception?                          

The researchers separated the youngest (10%) and the oldest (10%) of those taken in the survey.  If the total percentage of the population would have been larger, the results could have been different. Also, does gender matter in the viewing of  “My Wife and my Mother- in- Law?” Men’s perception is different from women’s.  Men’s view of youth, which needs more study in science, would be an interesting follow-up.  Conclusively, beauty and youth are in the eye of the beholder.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s