Pinterest is handy even in it's most rudimentary form: See photo I like, save for later. But there are lots of cool tools built into Pinterest that can make the entire experience even more fun — and useful. Try working these handy tricks into your pinning repertoire:
1. You can make those "Pin It" buttons that pop up all the time disappear.
If you're using Chrome, the you can add to the browser also causes little buttons that scream "pin me! pin me!" to appear when your mouse hovers over a photo. Sure, they're handy, but can also be distracting as you scroll down a page. Get rid of them by right-clicking the Pin It button, selecting Options, and then checking "Hide hovering Pin it buttons," to say bye-bye to these flittering little guys.
There is one caveat: Some savvy websites and blogs might have installed their own "pin this!" buttons, which you won't be able to banish.
2. You actually don't need a button at all to pin something.
These days, every website is filled with buttons and prompts demanding we share, pin, and like, but don't forget that every time you pin something, you're essentially just bookmarking the page's URL. When you want to save something that doesn't have an immediate "pin me!" prompt, just remember good ol' copy-and-paste.
For instance, let's say your sister just emailed you a link you want to save for later. If you're on your smartphone, copy the link, and then open the Pinterest app. The app will prompt you to pin the link that you just copied.
This clever trick works for Instagram snaps you'd love to save, too (betcha didn't you could do that, huh?). Tap the "•••" that appears below the photo and tap "Copy Share URL." Then, open Pinterest, and add the link to whatever board you want.
3. On an iPhone, you can save anything to Pinterest in just one tap.
Copying a URL is handy way to save a pin in a pinch, but it's a little clunky. On an iPhone, you can enable Pinterest to appear as an option when you want to share or save an article. If this sounds unfamiliar, it's because it's not a default option — you have to enable it.
Next time you're reading something you want to pin, tap the share button on the bottom of your screen. The menu bar will appear; swipe right until you see the "•••" box. Tap it and turn on Pinterest as a share extension. Now it will always appear whenever you hit that share button, so you can conveniently pin to your heart's content.
4. Pin the wrong link, and you could lose your pin forever.
If you love to read blogs, listen up. Many blogs don't have a true homepage — just a feed of content, with the newest post at the top. Spot a DIY project you'd love to save for a rainy day? Then it's essential you click the post's permalink before you pin.
Here's why: If you pin the post directly from the site's homepage, your pin won't link back to the individual post itself — just the homepage, which is updated with new stories all the time.
A post's permalink (the actual URL of the specific post that will always take you directly to it) is easy to capture — just click the post's headline on the blog's homepage. Then pin. Trust us: It will save you a ton of furious Googling months later, when the post is buried under a ton of new content.
5. Want in on what's hot? The search bar lets you snoop on what's popular right this very second.
Pinterest can easily overwhelm, but one click of the search bar reveals topics that are currently trending — a.k.a. every project or recipe your friends are going to start talking about really soon. It's a great place to start if you're a Pinterest newbie, and but also provides great cocktail party fodder. Succulents and macrame are just so last year, you'll tell your pals. Everyone's talking about sweater dresses and apple nachos, now.
6. Pinterest search suggestions aren't just for show.
When you type into the search bar, you'll notice boxes with other words appearing underneath. These aren't random — they're terms Pinterest has noticed other users searching or adding to their pins. So clicking on one of the words to add it your search might reveal fun stuff you didn't even know you were missing.
7. You can easily hide "suggested pins," if you're not into them.
If you start a board called, say, "Burrito Ideas," you might notice Pinterest flooding your feed with tons of suggestions for wraps filled with carnitas and guac (not that I'm speaking from experience or anything...). Teach Pinterest a lesson by hiding these suggested posts, Just click the X on the bottom of the pin, and Pinterest will learn better what you love — and what, more importantly, you don't. (And, psst: You can use this trick to get rid of ads that pop in your feed, too).
8. There's a handy way to search your own pins.
If you're a Pinterest power user, that perfect pumpkin pie recipe you pinned last week can quickly get drowned in a sea of other dessert ideas. But there's good news: You can search just your own pins. Just click onto your profile page and type what you're looking for into the search bar. Then click "Your Pins" to see only what you've added to your boards. Voila! There's that treat you were looking for.
Make this feature even more helpful by adding a keyword or two to the caption when you pin something — words you're likely to search when you go looking for the pin later.
9. Good news for neat freaks: Cleaning up boards is easy, too.
Pinterest is a tool that's difficult to get exactly right from the start. You might start pinning home ideas, but then realize you really need a board for each room of your house. Or maybe you spied a friend's and got totally jealous.
Simply select "Move Pins" on your Pinterest profile page. Then, by checking the boxes that appear on the pins, you can move, copy, or delete them in a snap.
10. Secret boards are a great way to be sneaky — and stay organized.
If you use secret boards just to stash stuff you'd be embarrassed for others to see (and, for the record, your love of is not something you should feel ashamed about), that's great — but with a little creativity, you could be even more strategic.
Why not have a secret board for everyone in your family? Then, you can save gift ideas or other surprises as you come across them — and never feel stumped on a birthday again. Or use secret boards to plan surprise parties, collect wedding inspiration, or create a photo journal you only want to share with select people.
11. Rock your vacation (or your staycation) with Place Pins.
Planning a big trip? Start a new board and select "yes" for the Map option. Then, search for sights you want to see and pin them — they'll appear on a corresponding map, so you'll never be lost in the city you're visiting. Plus Place Pins just got an upgrade — there's now 7 billion places you can pin, and they include businesses' phone numbers, suggestions for other places to visit nearby, and a link to Google or Apple maps for directions. (You'll only see these upgrades on iOS devices right now, but they'll roll out for Android and the web in the future.)
But personally, I think the coolest use for Place Pins is one you can use in your own town. If you have an Android device (sorry, iPhone users), you can get an alert each time you're near one of the places you've saved. It's the perfect way to ensure you'll actually stop by that new coffee shop or bookstore while bopping around town.
12. Step up your pinning game in a big way with IFTTT.
stands for "If this, then that," and is a (and ) that will completely amp up everything you do online. It requires a few steps to set up, but stay with us — once you've dipped your toe into what the tool can do, you'll be playing with it for hours.
Essentially, IFTTT can take what you do on one social media site, and simultaneously help you get more of what you want out of another site. For instance, once you link your accounts to IFTTT, you can create a rule that will pin everything you "favorite" on Etsy to one of your Pinterest boards, too. Or, maybe you want to automatically pin photos you take with your phone to a Pinterest board — IFTTT can make that happen, too. After you set it up, it's totally hands-off — and an easy to way to accomplish everything you want to do online super fast.
And while you're at it, follow Good Housekeeping on and .