Here’s What The Image You See In This Optical Illusion Reveals About Your Age

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Optical illusions can really make you scratch your head. It’s like they’re gaslighting you or making you gaslight yourself.

The illusion usually has something to do with light or shape, but it is how you react on a subconscious level that makes people see different things. Be ready to be quite confused with the following optical illusion.

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How Do Optical Illusions Work?

Optical illusions happen when our brain and eyes try to speak to each other in their own language but the interpretation gets mixed up. When we put certain patterns, numbers together strategically, or light an object a certain way, we can actually trick our brain into seeing something that isn’t there. Even if the brain knows it’s being tricked.

Images like the one you’re about to see have two possible interpretations. Usually, the one that is most familiar or important will be the one you pick up first.

Do You See A Young Woman Or Old Woman?

youngoldwoman illusion

W. E. Hill / Wikipedia

W. E. Hill / Wikipedia

rhere are 2 pictures in this one image. Depending on your age, you’ll be more inclined to see one over the image. Some people see a beautiful young woman while some older ones noticed the old woman first.

The image was originally made by American illustrator William Ely Hill in November of 1915. It was originally titled “My Wife and My Mother-In-Law”. The image circulating today was adapted from a picture going back at least to an 1888 German postcard. This could explain why the woman’s attire differs from today but at least age is a constant.

Social Media Is Driving Itself Crazy Trying to Find Both

facebook comment about man being old at 30 because he can only see the old woman

Gallifreyte / Unsplash

Gallifreyte / Unsplash

The problem is that those who see one woman can’t seem to find the other one! Those who find one, are trying to help each other find the other. One commented: “I couldn’t find the old lady until I halved the picture and only looked at the bottom half.”

People started to notice that if they find the young woman first, it likely has something to do with their age, or at least how young they feel.

So What Does Your Answer Mean?

man explaining in a facebook comment where the women are drawn

LifeCatharsis / Facebook

LifeCatharsis / Facebook

Finally, someone figured out how to find both noting that the young woman’s eyes and ear can also be interpreted as the old woman’s eyes. It’s all about careful perception and the messages we send to our brains. This can come down to years of subconscious perception, experience, and yes age!

In fact, researchers at Flinders University, found that what we see in this picture comes down to “own-age social biases.” We are creatures of habit and we are attracted to what’s familiar because it feels safe and relatable. This is a way of validating our own experiences so that we feel “normal” and fit in. For example, we prefer to surround ourselves we people who are our own age because they “match” our lifestyle and probably get us. So, we look for them in this image too. Get it?

They Even Did A Telling Study

man puts his hand on his forehead with a confused face

Sammy Williams / Unsplash

Sammy Williams / Unsplash

This isn’t just a one-time illusion, this is just a reflection of we see ourselves in relation to each other. The study had concluded: “the young and old respectively accurately estimating their own age best, showing own-age bias is closely aligned to both their conscious and subconscious reactions.”

Keep in mind that the university tested this on over 400 people over the age of 18! You’d think that’s plenty of chances to agree on one of the women…

Pretty neat right?

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Higher Perspectives Author

Higher Perspectives Author is one of the authors writing for Higher Perspectives