A smile has topped a poll of the most important physical features when it comes to attraction between men and women.
A smile was rated highly by 56% of respondents, closely followed by faces (53%) and eyes (51%).
Dress sense, body shape, hair and height were also measured, with the latter bringing up the rear on 25%.
Interestingly, it was a non-physical attribute – personality – which was the clear winner of the survey.
Ninety per cent of respondents rated this human attribute most important when it comes to attraction.
The results have been published as part of the British Dental Health Foundation’s annual campaign – National Smile Month – now in its 35th year.
This year the theme is ‘The Smile Factor’, which aims to remind people that their mouth, teeth and smile is fundamental to all aspects of their life – whether career, personality, relationships, attraction or all-round good health.
Despite the importance of smiles and teeth to everyday life, many people appear to have a poor image of the nation’s Smile Factor.
The survey reveals that only 23% believed that the nation had ‘good teeth’, and approaching half the population were not happy with their smile or teeth – stained or yellow teeth being the most common concern (37%).
Chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter, said: ‘As a nation we probably spend more time and money looking after our hair and the clothes we wear, rather than caring for our teeth. The survey is a great reminder that we should be giving greater attention to our teeth – not just because it improves oral health – but because it gives us the confidence to smile, which makes a major difference to our relationships, careers and overall image.
‘During National Smile Month, we hope everyone will consider what they can do to improve their Smile Factor. Hundreds of dental practices across the UK will be supporting the campaign and it’s an excellent time to seek their help and advice.
He adds: ‘It’s really important to get the basics right at home as well. We recommend brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, cutting down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks, and visiting your dentist regularly, as often as they recommend. Adopting this good oral health regime can make a huge difference to a confident smile and many aspects of everyday life.’
For more information about how you can care for your teeth, contact the Dental Helpline on 0845 063 1188