lighten

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lighten (one's) load

To help make something less difficult, upsetting, or overwhelming for one. Thankfully my wife's family will be there when we move to help lighten our load a bit. I'm so sorry for your loss, Jen. If there's anything we can do to lighten your load, please don't hesitate to ask.
See also: lighten, load

lighten (one's) wallet

1. To spend a large amount of money. (When speaking of one's own actions.) My sister loves to shop. She's always out looking for new ways to lighten her wallet.
2. To take money from someone; to cause someone to spend a significant amount of money. (When speaking of someone or something acting on another person.) Sure, it's a nice hotel, but it will lighten your wallet faster than you can say "overpriced." I'm always wary of souvenir merchants in foreign cities, whose sole objective is to lighten travelers' wallets.
See also: lighten, wallet

lighten the load

To help make something less difficult, upsetting, or overwhelming for one. Thankfully my wife's family will be there when we move to help lighten the load a bit. I'm so sorry for your loss, Jen. If there's anything we can do to lighten the load, please don't hesitate to ask.
See also: lighten, load

lighten up

1. To brighten something in color. I think some new highlights will lighten up your hair and really refresh your look.
2. To act less seriously or sternly. In this usage, "lighten up" is a set phrase. A: "I think he definitely needs to be grounded." B: "Oh, lighten up—it's not like you never made stupid mistakes as a kid."
3. To cause someone or something to become less serious or stern. It's a funeral—nothing you do will lighten up the mood.
See also: lighten, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

lighten something up

to make something lighter or brighter. Some white paint will lighten this room up a lot. The sunlight came in and lightened up the kitchen.
See also: lighten, up

lighten up

to become lighter or brighter. (See also lighten up (on someone or something).) We applied a new coat of white paint to the walls, and the room lightened up considerably. The sky is beginning to lighten up a little.
See also: lighten, up

lighten up (on someone or something)

to be less rough and demanding or rude with someone or something. Please lighten up on her. You are being very cruel. You are too harsh. Lighten up.
See also: lighten, up
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

lighten up

Become or cause to become less serious or gloomy, and more cheerful. For example, Lighten up, Sam-it'll turn out all right. This slangy expression transfers reducing a physical weight to a change of mood or attitude.
See also: lighten, up
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

lighten up

v.
1. To make something appear lighter in shade: The artist lightened up the paint by mixing in some white. Those mirrors really lighten the room up.
2. To become lighter in shade: These pants are too dark now, but they will lighten up after they've been washed a lot.
3. To make something more pleasant and less serious or depressing: The jokes lightened up the tone of the meeting. I didn't mean to be disrespectful—I was just trying to lighten things up.
4. To take matters less seriously: Everything will work out fine, so stop worrying and lighten up.
See also: lighten, up
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

lighten up

Don’t be so serious, relax. Originally, this slangy imperative, dating from the 1940s, meant to calm down, but in succeeding decades it took on its present meaning. Tracy Kidder had it in Among Schoolchildren (1989): “Me and my precious schedules . . . I’ve got to lighten up. Chill out.”
See also: lighten, up
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Burila instinctively knew that the market was hungry for a soap that would lighten and smoothen the skin.
'This new formulation not only heals pimples, but also promises to lighten those horrific pimple scars.'
It lightens skin by stopping melanosomes from entering keratinocytes, therefore slowing down pigmentation.
Kojic acid has long been used in Japan since the '80s because of its capacity to lighten skin.
Spray onto towel-dried hair, comb through and blow dry and then either lighten all over, spray onto lower sections, spray on selected strands, or just touch up roots.
M recommends: The Color Essence for Blonde Hair range, from pounds 3.99, has shampoo and styling products for blondes who want shine without the brass (020-7935 1975); John Frieda's Beach Blonde range, from pounds 4.95 - we love Lemon Lights to naturally lighten hair in sunlight and Sun Streaks, a heat-accelerated highlighter; call Neal's Yard (0161-831 7875) for mail- order of camomile, pounds 1.10, and rhubarb root powder, pounds 1.75
There are many different reasons that individuals may seek to lighten their skin (Hunter 2011: 149).
Beyond the factors of beauty and marriage, individuals may lighten skin in order to increase job market competitiveness, particularly since those with dark skin or other features different from light, white standardized ideals have often faced discrimination in the workplace (Glenn 2008; Morales 2009; Perry 2006).
Additionally, in India, white skin has long been associated with the country's traditional rulers and powerful groups, from the Aryans to British colonialists, as well as with the upper castes, while in countries as disparate as Senegal and the Philippines, many seek to lighten their skin as a way to elevate their social standing (Deshpande 2002; Saint Louis 2010).
In Ghana, for example, there are countless billboard advertisements on how to get "perfect white" skin (Coopernov 2016), while in Jamaica, dancehall songs and lyrics often praise those who lighten their skin (Charles 2011a).
However, a study by Charles (2003) found that mean self-esteem scores for both skin bleachers and non-skin bleachers were comparable, suggesting that self-esteem does not fully explain the desire to lighten skin.