Survey says: the smile. That’s according to 1,018 Americans, age 18 and older, who responded to a study regarding perceptions of aging and beauty.

Conducted by Kelton-Global Marketing Research Company, the survey showed that 45 percent of respondents believe a person’s smile can most easily defy the effects of aging. The eyes came in second at 34 percent.

Here are some other noteworthy statistics from the study:

• 54 percent of the population over age 50 believe the smile to be the feature that can best overcome the appearance of aging. Only 39 percent of their younger counterparts felt the same.

• 80 percent of adults admit they would spend money to hide or correct aging flaws.

• Women are more likely than men (84 percent vs. 75 percent) to invest in improvements.

• Of the women surveyed, 63 percent said they would fix their teeth before they would pay for a weight loss plan.

• Among respondents willing to invest in cosmetic treatments, 62 percent would spend on preserving their smile; 48 percent would pay for weight loss; 33 percent would treat thinning hair; 33 percent would reduce dark under-eye circles; 31 percent would eliminate wrinkles; and 28 percent would repair spider veins in their legs.

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