16 Life Hacks We Learned From Our Moms
Whenever we run into a pickle, whether it’s a basic cooking question or serious advice about the future, it seems like mom is always at the ready with a helpful hint. Even when she’s not wearing one of her many superhero hats — you know, when she’s just being mom, not the cheerleader, the coach, the teacher or the lifesaver — her habits, rituals and routines still rub off on us (for better or worse!) and now, we’re living, breathing encyclopedias of how-tos, home remedies and life hacks. It’s just one of many things we have to be thankful for this Mother’s Day, and since we’re big believers in giving back what you get, we’re sharing our hand-me-downs with you right here! Scroll through to read the motherly advice that’s helped all of us here at Brit + Co get through life’s punches and potholes.
1. “When I was little my mom taught me how to make a homemade remedy for a stomach ache — boil water with bay leaves, add a teaspoon of baking soda and squeeze half a lemon into it. It totally works, and I still do it today. Tastes really delicious too.”
– Annie Kubena, Art Director
2. “Growing up, I remember my mom used to always tell me and my sister, ‘everything has a place.’ It used to drive us crazy, but now that I live on my own it’s something I think to myself a lot. Having a dedicated space for things does wonders to help keeps things easily organized!”
– Cortney Clift, Associate Editor
3. “She taught me how to live a balanced life!”
– Ashley Reed, Offices and Operations Manager
4. “Always be nicer than necessary. This is my rule for life, learned from my mom.”
– Tammy Evrard, Midwest Director Brand Partnerships
5. “My mom taught me that the secret to any good party is getting people off their feet and laughing. Her go-to trick? A piñata. My favorite memories are of the late nights we spent before a birthday party, painstakingly cutting tissue paper and gluing it on our masterpiece. Thanks to her, I’ve kept up the tradition at my own parties, something my friends are very grateful for!”
– Angela Velez, Community Editor
6. “Chew parsley when chopping onions to keep from crying.”
– Juliet Ashley, Manager, Brand Analytics
7. “To always do your best, work hard and meditate often.”
– Marisa Kumtong, Junior Designer
8. “Use sticky notes…everywhere, your memory isn’t as good as you think it is. Best place my mom swears by for a sticky note is under a mattress reminding you when to flip it next!”
– Ashley Perlman, Digital Sales Planner
9. “Always bring a sweatshirt.”
– Paul Dufour, Engineer
10. “Before my mom was my mom, she was a totally adventurous single babe. She hung out with bands in high school, traveled the world, was a stand-in for Mary Tyler Moore in Ordinary People and has the photos to prove it. She’s always encouraged me to think of myself first and have fun while doing it. Growing up, I hung out with bands in high school, I traveled the world, I was a studio audience member on TRL (that counts for something, right?) and I have the photos to prove it.”
– Kate Puhala, Style Editor
11. “Okay, the Haas secret ingredient to baking from a box is to add a bit of vanilla extract. Definitely takes away the cardboard box flavor. Also, my mom uses regular Mr. Clean to clean her jewelry. Use a little bit with equal parts water and your silver jewelry is sparkling. Mr. Clean is GREAT because it’s non-ammoniated.”
– Victoria Haas, Chanel Marketing
12. “‘Always smile and make happy.'”
– Krystle Cho, Designer
13. “She was just incredibly easy going. Seriously, all the kids from our neighborhood would always be at our house and she would just let us run wild. She would also let us (and help us) decorate our bedrooms however the hell we wanted. I mean, she let us turn our cabin bedroom into an aquarium one time (like, she let my little sister and I paint the walls blue with garbage bags (yes, garbage bags) and put giant fish decals everywhere. My sister and I were so pleased with the monstrosity we had created). So I guess that is my mom’s life hack… just let [your kids] be kids.”
– Alexis Monson, Managing Community Editor
14. “My mom always taught me to never take “no” or an unsatisfactory answer as a final response, to always question until I got full clarity and was at peace with the response or outcome of a conversation or situation. She also taught me about hard work and was a real proponent for me and my sister’s determination. Additionally (though I obviously don’t take after her style-wise) she did incorporate a lot of bright colors into what she wore and my sisters and I definitely picked that up because I feel like bright colors always exude an air of confidence and make you more approachable.”
– Sean Griffis, Associate Editor
15. “Best hangover medicine: Beef broth with lemon juice. I swear by it!”
– Maddie Bachelder, Creative Coordinator
16. “The trick to cleaning a dirty (really dirty) microwave is actually easier than you’ve been doing it. Put a bowl of water with dish soap in, microwave it for a couple minutes or until you can see the door steaming up and the bowl bubbling over, then wipe down the dirty interior with a sponge. Best cleaning hack ever.”
– Lisa Raphael, Editorial Director
What life hacks did your mom teach you? Share them with us in the comments below.
(Photos of our sweet mothers courtesy of Annie Kubena, Ashley Reed, Marisa Kumtong, Kate Puhala, Krystle Cho + Sean Griffis)
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