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 English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions 


Alphabetical List of Idioms S, page 11
  from: 'skin a cat'   to:  'slice of the cake'


  • skin a cat
    • The expression 'there's more than one way to skin a cat' means that there are many different ways of achieving something.
      "How about trying a different method? There's more than one way to skin a cat you know!"

  • skin someone alive
    • If you are angry and threaten to skin someone alive, you mean that you are going to punish them severely.
      "If that kid damages my car again, I'll skin him alive!"

  • (no) skin off one's nose
    • To use this expression means that you don't care if something happens.
      "It's no skin off my nose if he doesn't accept the invitation - I don't care one way or another."

  • be skin deep
    • Something that is referred to as skin deep is considered to be shallow, superficial or lacking substance.
      "She seemed interested but her apparent enthusiasm was only skin deep.”

  • by the skin of our teeth
    • To do something by the skin of our teeth means that you barely manage to do it, that you almost fail or that you win something by a narrow margin.
      "Andy passed the driving test by the skin of his teeth!"

  • have thick skin/be thick-skinned
    • Someone who has thick skin is not easily offended by criticism, hostile remarks or verbal attacks.
      "To succeed in politics, you need to have thick skin.”

  • jump out of your skin
    • If you jump out of your skin, you are extremely surprised or shocked.
      "Jane nearly jumped out of her skin when the horse put its head through the kitchen window!"

  • all skin and bone
    • If someone is all skin and bone, they are very thin or too thin.
      "After trekking in the Himalayas, he was all skin and bone."

  • (put) skin in the game
    • If you put skin in the game, you show your confidence in a company by making a considerable investment or a financial commitment.
      "I got good news today. Apparently a serious investor is willing to put skin in the game."

  • save one's own skin
    • To say that someone saves their own skin means that they protect themselves from difficulty or trouble with no consideration or help for others
      "He withdrew from the project during the crisis to save his own skin and left the rest of the team in difficulty.”

  • the sky is the limit
    • To say the sky's the limit means that there is no limit to the possibility of success or progress for someone or something.
      "How successful do you think the project will be?"
      "Who knows ... the sky's the limit!"


  • slam dunk
    • This is a basketball term which means that success or victory will be easily achieved.
      "Our lawyer will win the case easily. It's a slam dunk."

  • (a) slap on the wrist
    • If you get a slap on the wrist, you receive mild punishment, or you are reprimanded for something you have done.
      "I got a slap on the wrist from my wife for leaving the kitchen in a mess."

  • (a) sledgehammer to crack a nut
    • Using a sledgehammer to crack a nut means using disproportionate force to solve a problem.
      "He called the police because his neighbour was rude? - now that's using a sledgehammer to crack a nut!"

  • sleep like a log
    • If you sleep like a log, you sleep deeply or soundly.
      "After a day at the beach, I usually sleep like a log."

  • sleep on it
    • If you take time (until the next day) to think something over before making a decision, you sleep on it.
      "I suggest you sleep on it. You can give me your decision tomorrow."

  • not sleep a wink / not get a wink of sleep
    • If someone doesn't get a wink of sleep, they don't sleep a all.
      "It was so noisy in the hotel, I didn't get a wink of sleep."

  • (a) sleeping partner
    • This term refers to a person who invests in a business without taking an active part in its management, and whose association with the enterprise is not public knowledge.
      "He works alone but his business is partly financed by a sleeping partner."

  • (a) slice of the cake
    • When people feel entitled to a share of the profits or benefits, they want a (larger) slice of the cake.
      "Since profits are higher this year, the workers feel they deserve a bigger slice of the cake."

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