Don't panic about Valentine's Day this year. Here's your guide to buying romantic gifts, finding things to do and generally winning at Valentine's Day. You've got this.
What is it about Valentine's Day that gets people all jittery?
Come February 14th each year, couples wonder if their other half is planning everything, singles loudly express their distaste for the "Hallmark Holliday" and let's not even get started on people who just started dating and now have to navigate a relationship land mine with more precision than a bomb disposal squad.*
If you've reached our Valentine's Day guide, I'm going to assume you're planning to acknowledge the day. That's awesome! Whatever makes you happy is great. If you want to go nuts with a hot air balloon ride, followed by breakfast, then gifts of jewellery and flowers and wine and maybe an engagement ring, followed by rose petals, then go to town. Valentine's Day can be whatever you damn well please.
Valentine's Gift Ideas
Where will you be celebrating Valentine's Day?
Best retailers for Valentine's gifts
How to choose a Valentine's Day gift
Choosing a Valentine’s Day gift is not rocket science. Simply use a few key factors to help you navigate around gift buying pitfalls and you can't go wrong.
How long have you been dating for?
I'm going to come right out and say this: buying expensive and overly romantic gifts for someone you just started dating is not cute, it's creepy. It puts unnecessary pressure on the relationship, which you can be fairly sure won't be around for much longer. A more relationship-age appropriate gift might be buying tickets you can both use to upcoming gig or festival, or even just treating them to dinner.
Personality, personality, personality.
Hopefully if you've been dating for a while, you have some idea of their personality and what makes them tick. Get all psychological on them and find the WHY of how they spend their time. Do they exercise a lot? It could be because they love getting physical in the outdoors, are a high achiever in all things (including their body), or they place a high value on image. Or it could be all three. Asking the why will help you unlock personality ticks and find the perfect gift – even if it has nothing to do with where you originally started.
Age matters. But not as much as you think.
What's more important is the life stage they're at. Are they at university? Working full time? About to welcome in their first child – or grandchild? Numerical age isn't as important as life stage. And if you think getting a woman over 30 years old skin repair products is a good idea, you have another thing coming. Actually, any woman. That is a terrible idea and you need to rethink your present buying game.
Hobbies. Or more importantly, what do they want to do but haven't done so yet?
Hobbies are an easy and obvious place to scrape ideas from. And hey, it works for a reason! A snowboarder will never say no to a new pair of goggles and a budding MasterChef will love the gourmet ingredients you got them. But if you want to go a step further, what's the one thing they want to do but haven't yet? Recently, an article on the 37 questions to ask to fall in love with anyone went viral. One of the questions was "Is there something that you've dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven't you done it?" Find this out and you've hit present finding gold.
Valentine's Day Flowers
What would Valentine's Day be without flowers? No, seriously. Without flowers, the whole holiday might cease to exist.
You might be a traditionalist at heart and be looking to send your lucky lover a dozen red roses. Or maybe you want to break tradition and send sunflowers. Or peonies. Or a cactus. Whatever floats your boat, you can order it online and ensure it's delivered by Valentine's Day.