do something by the skin of your teeth

by the skin of (one's) teeth

Barely. Often used to describe something that almost didn't happen. Oh man, my car wouldn't start this morning—I just made it here by the skin of my teeth!
See also: of, skin, teeth

do something by the ˌskin of your ˈteeth

(informal) only just do something; nearly fail to do something: We thought we’d miss the plane, but in the end we caught it by the skin of our teeth.
See also: of, skin, something, teeth
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