Heart-shaped lights

How to get exactly what you want for Valentine's Day this year

Couple kissing and holding balloons

Perhaps no other holiday comes with more mixed emotions than the supposed most romantic day of the year: Valentine’s Day.

As a single person, it might not be your favorite holiday. And as a married person, you might like it even less because *phew* talk about pressure. (You can love a person for 364 days, but mess this one up and you might be sleeping on the couch.)

Okay, that may be slightly dramatic, but still — there are some definite expectations about this holiday, whether they’re spoken or not.

This year, why not make life easier for everyone and simply be your OWN Valentine? Instead of waiting for someone else to pull through with what you want, just get it yourself! Better yet, be the person who gives great gifts. 

Valentine’s Day, Galentine’s Day, Singles Awareness Day — whichever one you celebrate, there’s something on this list for you or your girlfriends! Use it as your own personal shopping guide or pass it along as a not-so-subtle hint to your s/o to up your chances of getting something you’ll love this year. (They may even thank you for it!)

Gifts to eat

Assortment of baked goods

It’s been said that the way to man’s heart is through his stomach, but it’s true for ladies, too! You can’t go wrong when you give a girl a good meal or a delectable treat she can enjoy at the end of a hard day. (Chocolate has healing powers. We’re not making that up.)

Sure, you can opt for the safe (albeit cliche) choice of chocolates and roses, but perhaps it’s time to think outside of the heart-shaped box, hmm? Here are a few ideas:

  • Chocolate-covered cinnamon bears. Always a winner in our books — and the perfect complement to a luxurious bubble bath. (See above.)
  • Treats from a foreign country. Major bonus points if you include a surprise trip to said country, though that’s definitely going the extra (few thousand) mile(s). 
  • Kouign-amann. Pronounced “queen uh-mahn” and also known as “ridiculously delicious.”
  • Levain Bakery cookies. They ship them! Or you can make your own with this copycat recipe.
  • A treat from Magnolia Bakery. Yes, they ship, too! This is a good one if your honey is a Chip and Jo fan.
  • Salt & Straw ice cream. Definitely worth shipping if you don’t live close to one of their locations

Gifts to wear

Brigitte Brianna Little Black Dress

Have you ever met a woman who was offered new clothing and said, “Mmm . . . no, thanks. I’m good”? We haven’t either. Stylish, comfy and affordable clothing is always a winner in the gifts category. But wearable gifts don’t always have to be clothes — it could be makeup or jewelry, too! (Go for all three and you’ve got the Valentine’s Day trifecta.) 

Any one of these is a great pick:

  • A new dress. For church, date night or any other special occasion, a gal can never have too many dresses!
  • Wrinkle-free clothes. They say you can’t give the gift of time, but we disagree. Fill your closet with these beautiful (and versatile) wrinkle-free clothes and you won’t be worrying about choosing your next outfit or warming up the iron every morning, which saves you about 29.3 hours per year. (We’re just guessing.)
  • New jewelry. Seasons change and so do styles, so new pieces of jewelry are always welcome gifts!
  • Makeup. It can be so hard to find brands you love and trust. Give this cosmetics collection a try and you won’t be sorry!

Gifts to use

Red fanny back with gold zipper and details

Are you more of a utilitarian girl? That’s great! These gift options below will be sure to come in handy. (And as a bonus, they also look cute.)

  • A fanny pack. This once-mocked accessory is now a coveted fashion statement. If you haven’t already jumped on the train, it’s time to get one.
  • A good water bottle. Nothing says “I love you” like keeping yourself and others hydrated, right? If you’re a hydro flask fan, you’ll love this water bottle
  • A makeup bag. But make it a good one that will last!
  • A travel tote. In case you’re lucky enough to be hitting the road soon (or you’re just heading to Costco) this bag makes a great grab-n-go companion. 
  • A rechargeable hand warmer. Obvious benefits here.
  • Bluetooth tracking devices. No more losing those keys (and your mind, by extension).

Gifts to entertain

People raising hands at a music concert

Experiences do make the best gifts, right? If having fun is your love language, you’ll love any of these:

  • Play or concert tickets. Nothing beats live entertainment. Treat yourself and a friend or take your sweetheart out for a date night to your favorite band, comedian or stage play.
  • Your favorite childhood board game. Just imagine the pangs of nostalgia you’ll feel when you crack open “Mystery Date,” “Guess Who?” or “Mouse Trap.” 
  • Amazon Fire Stick. Movie buffs and streaming fans can turn any television into a smart TV with one of these bad boys. (P.s. this is not a sponsored link.)
  • Cooking classes. You’re never too old to learn a new skill — especially the kind of skill that fills your belly with delicious food! Look for classes near you and sign up with your partner or a friend.
  • Camping gear. For the outdoorsy, adventurous types.

Gifts that don’t cost a thing

A couple cooking together

Of course, you don’t have to spend money to knock it out of the park on Valentine’s Day. Sometimes the best gifts are the spontaneous ones that come from the heart and show how much you truly care about and know someone.

  • Cook for someone. A classically romantic move if you’re trying to impress your loved one. Don’t forget the candles and mood music!
  • Clean up. Oh boy, this one. This one should maybe be the No. 1 item on this whole list because a little cleaning goes a long way in terms of showing your love and affection. (Ladies, is anything sexier than a man who washes dishes, folds laundry, vacuums and scrubs toilets? We think not.)
  • Take the kids. Sometimes all anybody wants is a moment to themselves to do exactly. What. They. Want. With no interruptions. Offer to take someone’s kids for a day (or even for a couple of hours) and it might just be the nicest gift they ever get.
  • Share your talent. Learn a song on the guitar, paint a picture or bake a special treat. YouTube can teach you anything, friend.
  • Simply spend time with someone. Give the gift of your presence. (See what we did there?) Block out a few hours and let your friend or significant other choose whatever they want to do. 

Keep this list handy for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, Christmas or any other occasion and you’ll be set for life!

Did we miss anything that should be on this list? Let us know!

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