They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul. When you look into someone’s eyes you can see happiness, sadness, love, and anger, and more often than not, the eyes give away your true feelings. 

How To Describe Eyes In Writing

If you are a writer, there will undoubtedly come a time when you need to describe the eyes of a character. This sounds like it will be an easy task, but it’s too easy to fall into clichés when describing the eyes, which can stagnate the whole story.

But have no fear! We are here to help! If you are struggling to find the perfect way to describe eyes when you write then you have come to the right place. We are going to be going over some helpful tips to help you describe eyes in writing in a fluid, and clever way. 

How To Describe Eyes In Writing

Describing eyes when you write might sound easy, but it is actually a lot more challenging than you might originally think. Too often, people fall into clichés when they are describing the eyes, which can make your writing a bit bland. 

In order to describe eyes well in your writing, it is helpful to know a few tips and tricks that will really improve the way in which you write them. Below, you will find lots of helpful tips and tricks to elevate the way you write and describe your eyes. So read on to find out everything you need to know! 

Make Your Characters Eyes Contrast

One of the best ways you can describe a character’s eyes in a bit of a different way is by making their eyes contrast. If you have a large stocky man who is strong and rough around the edges, you can give him soft, angelic eyes. Or you could have a really outgoing and open character and have smaller, darker eyes. 

These contrasts tell you more about the characters and what is hidden beneath the surface. This contrast allows you to describe lots of different layers of their personality, without resorting to the usual eye clichés. 

It also makes your characters want to know more about why this contrast is even there in the first place! 

Avoid Fixating On The Color

You can’t avoid talking about the eye color completely, but you can avoid fixating on it. More often than not, you will need to describe the eye color, but move on! Don’t linger there! 

The color of a character’s eyes tells us nothing about their personality. You could give your character black eyes without pupils, but for all we know, they could be the loveliest person in your world.

This is why there is almost no point fixating on eye color. It tells us nothing about what your character is really like. Once you have described the color of your character’s eyes, leave it at that and move on. 

It’s also too easy to fall into cliché writing styles here. How many times have you read something like “her eyes were as blue as the ocean” and just rolled your eyes? 

Eye Description & The Development of The Story

How To Describe Eyes In Writing

A great way to describe the eyes without it being too cliché is to describe them in a way that actually helps the development of the story. 

Using adjectives to describe how the eyes of a character look can sometimes really show how previous events have changed the story. Perhaps a character had bright, open eyes when they first met your character, but now they have dim, vacant eyes because of an event that has happened since. 

This kills two birds with one stone by showing a change in the world and the characters and describing your characters without resorting to just harping on about their eye color. The way your character’s eyes are described can really add a lot to the story when it’s done right! 

Use The Eyes To Talk About Psychology

This expands on the last tip a little bit. If you want to go further into using the character’s eyes to develop the story, think about the psychology of the characters too. Think about some quirks they may have in regard to their eyes, and draw attention to that. 

For example, you could have a character who looks to the side a lot when they talk. You could focus on this when describing them and their eyes. Often, people who look to the side when they talk are lying or have something to hide, and you can use this in your story. 

Bringing attention to your characters’ psychological quirks through the eyes can really develop the story. It can even foreshadow major events that will happen later. Following on from that example, perhaps later on in the story, that character reveals what they are hiding or gets caught in a lie. 

You can have a lot of fun with this idea. Research is fundamental in working out the psychology of your characters. See what different eye movements mean, and how you can implement them into your story!

Read Some Examples

When all else fails and you have a bit of a creative block, read some examples of fantastic eye descriptions! If you have any favorites, look them up and study them, and work out why that eye description is so good.

Look to other authors to see how they do it and see which ones you think are good. You will be surprised by how inspiring doing this can be, and it may help you come up with a whole new way to describe your character’s eyes!


Describing eyes in your stories is not easy. Trying to find ways to write about them without becoming cliché is a lot harder than people think, but it isn’t impossible. 

The tips and tricks we have provided here should help you write the perfect eye description. Don’t be afraid to experiment with these tips.

Be creative and you will have a great description in no time at all! 



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