a little dab'll do ya

a little dab'll do ya

A small amount of something, especially a paste, cream, ointment, etc., will be enough to serve your purpose. Originally part of an advertising slogan for Brylcreem, a hair styling product for men. In the 1950s. Primarily heard in US. This is a very powerful anti-inflammatory cream—a little dab'll do ya. Now, a little dab'll do ya with this chili paste, as you don't want to overpower the other flavors in the curry.
See also: little, YA

a little dab'll do ya

or

a little dab will do you

AMERICAN, INFORMAL
People say a little dab'll do ya or a little dab will do you to mean that a small amount of something is enough. The thing to remember about cooking with shrimp paste is that a little dab will do ya. Note: This expression was originally an advertising slogan for hair cream in the 1960s.
See also: little, YA
References in periodicals archive ?
'A little dab'll do ya' was the advertising slogan for which grooming product?
It was also adapted by the makers of cartoon series The Flinstones, with Fred shrieking: "Yabba dabba doo!" The complete slogan is a little less enduring: "Brylcreem, A Little Dab'll Do Ya! Brylcreem, You'll look so debonair.
The early advertising slogan - A Little Dab'll Do Ya - was on everyone's lips and survived the test of time.
A LITTLE DAB'LL DO YA! We all know how hard it is opening glue bottles at the beginning of the school year.
A little dab'll do ya. You don't need to cover the whole brush head with toothpaste; a pea-sized amount is enough.
The lyrics to their jingle, which I suspect was mainly used in the United States, were: "Brylcreem, a little dab'll do ya. Brylcreem, you'll look so debonair!
"Or it means suffice," my wife said, "as in 'That will do' or 'A little dab'll do ya. '"
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