Does The Psychology Love Eye Trick Actually Work? We Asked Experts
Can you make someone fall in love with you with just a look? A TikTok video that recently went viral says you can, so we investigated. Here's what research and the experts have to say.
What is the psychology love eye trick?
The so-called psychology love eye trick is a specific flirting move popularized by a series of TikTok videos posted by user Sophie Rose Lloyd. It involves looking at someone's left eye, then their lips, and then their right eye.
The original video was posted in July 2021 and has since racked up nearly 17 million views, garnering attention with the claim that the trick can make people fall for you. Lloyd, in subsequent videos, says it's never failed her.
Does it actually work?
While there may not be a foolproof "magic trick" to make someone instantly fall in love with you, there may be more to this move than you think.
How to try it yourself.
Before we dive into what research and the experts say about the validity of this trick, if you're wondering how to actually do it, here's a step-by-step explanation:
- While in a conversation with someone you're interested in, look in their left eye for one second.
- Then, shift your gaze to their lips.
- After 1.5 to 2 seconds, bring your gaze up and look into their right eye.
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- This trick is intended to be used with someone you really like and have a mutual interest with. "So, it might not necessarily work on strangers or people that you've never spoken to before up until this point," Lloyd says, adding, "It's really good if you're with your crush [...and] it's a good way of making them kind of clear on how you feel."
- Avoid doing this trick in a group setting and stick to one-on-one conversations. "It might not work if you're in a group because their attention will be on all the people around the table. They might not be looking at you for the duration you actually do [the trick]," Lloyd explains.
- Lastly, do the trick while they're talking and you're listening, as opposed to when you're talking.
Is there any science behind it?
"We pick up on people's nonverbal cues—and eye contact is a nonverbal cue—as a way of communicating with somebody, and especially somebody that you're interested in," psychotherapist Annette Nuñez, Ph.D., LMFT, tells mbg. Not only does eye contact convey respect and confidence, but she says it also shows that you are engaged and listening attentively to this person.
According to certified sex therapist De-Andrea Blaylock-Solar, MSW, LCSW-S, CST, "Research shows us that holding your gaze with someone you're interested in can really foster connection."
In the 1997 experiment2 that inspired the famous "36 questions to fall in love," researchers found that they could foster intimacy between strangers by having them ask each other a series of personal questions followed by four minutes of uninterrupted eye contact. More recently, a 2019 study3 found that while eye contact may not directly affect romantic attraction, it does enhance intimate self-disclosure and reduce uncertainty toward a person.
So eye contact may not be some kind of magic trick, but it does seem to help create the kind of intimacy that contributes to falling in love.
What the experts say.
So, what do relationships experts make of the psychology love eye trick?
"There's a lot more that goes into falling in love besides doing a trick like that," says Nuñez.
That said, she says eye contact certainly can foster more intimacy and vulnerability—and even have some seductive power. "I'll have [client couples] do eye gazing because it gives a certain level of vulnerability," Blaylock-Solar adds. "It doesn't mean that it's a trick to fall in love, however."
Nuñez agrees, noting that if you're really looking for true love, it's going to take more than a simple trick. True love comes down to time, effort, and a conscious choice on both people's part.
"If you have to trick someone into it, then maybe assess whether you want somebody to lust after you or if you want somebody to really love you," she adds.
When it comes to really making someone fall in love with you, Nuñez says to focus on showing up for this person consistently and communicating openly and honestly. "You want a relationship with love that's built on trust and honesty, so the more consistent you can be with a partner, and the more you're there to listen without judgment, not make the relationship solely about you, you know, and being present—that's number one," she says.
Even Lloyd never said this trick works for a love-at-first-sight moment but rather to enhance intimacy that is already building with a crush.
Who isn't curious about how to flirt better? This eye contact trick isn't going to guarantee your crush will fall in love right then and there, though it may have something to it when it comes to drumming up some seductive tension and intimacy. Truly falling in love takes time, but in the meantime, some romantic eye-gazing certainly never hurt.
Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Writer, as well as a registered yoga instructor. She received her bachelor's in broadcasting and mass communication from SUNY Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.