Shit I Bought and Liked No. 85: The Only Valentine's Day Gift Guide You Need
Shitters! We’re nearing the end of January, and if you’ve been here for a bit, you know that can only mean one thing—another Shitter’s Guide to Valentine’s Day! Now this is not my first rodeo (or my second!), but we could always use more gift ideas (and so could your partners, who I’m more than happy to forward this email to—just drop me a line!).
Last year, as our present to each other, my boyfriend and I decided to split a long weekend trip to Mexico City. We decided beforehand that he’d get the flights and I’d cover the accommodations—it eliminated the usual element of surprise, but it was an amazing trip, and to me, so much better than any present he could’ve gotten (well, maybe not ANY, but you know… any within a price range that wouldn’t make him queasy).
It ended up being more affordable than I originally anticipated, but if traveling that far is out of the budget, you can take the same approach to somewhere closer to home (weekend trip nearby, city staycation, etc). To me, the whole point is spending quality time together, and sometimes it takes getting out of your usual space and routines to do that.
That all being said, travel is just one of so many gift options, and my brain is simply OVERFLOWING with ideas, so the following are options at multiple price points that anyone would be thrilled to receive:
Something homemade. It could be a card, breakfast in bed, a homemade dinner for two, even old-school coupons like the ones you made your mom for Mother’s Day (I will include this idea every single year until I get some!). There’s just something so special about being on the receiving end of something that your partner spent time and effort to make by themselves just for you! Also don’t underestimate a made-for-you Valentine’s playlist—anything that feels sweet and reminiscent of young love like that is a definite yes in my book.
Something topical. If you have a vacation planned later in the year, consider something that complements those plans. If you’re heading somewhere warm, try a new pair of swim trunks (I love the prints on these and these), or if you’re going abroad, passport covers and luggage tags are amazing. To me, these all fall in the category of things that people don’t usually want to splurge on for themselves, but would be thrilled to get.
Something to do! Activities will be different for everyone depending on what you’re into, but gifting an experience you can share is always fun! If I were doing this, I’d go the DIY route and make an itinerary for a food crawl of some kind (dumplings? tacos? ice cream?), and block an afternoon to take my partner to every single one. You can also go the more traditional route and book a cooking class or grab concert tickets (if it’s Taylor Swift, you are truly the partner of the year).
Something sexy! I mean, it is Valentine’s Day! Sexy will be different for everyone, but depending on your vibe, I love this lacy bodysuit from Hanky Panky, this minimalist satin set from Fleur Du Mal, this classic silk robe from Intimissimi, and this delicate black set from VS (that happens to be much less expensive than it looks!). But who said lingerie is the only way to be sexy?! I’m also a fan of this luxe boxer option (a man’s modeling, but they’d look great on anyone). They’d be a fun way to treat your partner, but I’d be even more impressed if mine showed up in these on his own!
Something shared. If you live together, getting something that your partner would be into for your shared space is a great way to make them happy while stretching your budget. I love this negroni print—they’re my boyfriend’s favorite cocktail, but the artist has a bunch more to pick from if you have other drinks of choice. You can also go the more practical route and grab an appliance or device you’ve been wanting (Vitamix, pasta maker, air fryer anyone?)—just make sure there’s still some element of romance in the day if the gift is decidedly less so.
Something floral. Unless your partner explicitly said they don’t want them, flowers on Valentine’s Day are pretty much an obligation. You don’t have to go all out—big arrangements can definitely get pricey in February—but you should do something! I personally prefer long-lasting options like Venus Et Fleur to a traditional bouquet (go with this, this, or these depending on your budget). I also love a good dried arrangement for someone with edgier taste—Florabrook in NYC makes beautiful ones.
Something sparkly! If there was ever time…! On my eye at the moment: This perfect little pinky ring from Fewer Finer, these cool girl marquise studs from EF Collection, and this cutie little key charm from Catbird! Get that one engraved with your initials and stick it on one of their thin chain bracelets because they’ve got the key to your heart. Boom, done, perfect little gift!
Something relaxing. A gift certificate for a massage (plus tax and tip!) could easily be my gift year after year, but it’s an even better idea if your partner isn’t one to treat themselves to that kind of thing. Also up the TLC route: Kate McLeod’s body stones, topical CBD salve, a big spa day for two, and the new and improved mini Theragun.
Something kissable: I also love the idea of getting your partner a lip product for Valentine’s. I can personally vouch for every single shade in this set from Westman Atelier but I’m also dying to try the Ami Cole lip oils.
Something recurring. Why settle for one gift?! Find a local shop with a wine club (I love All Time in LA), set up a monthly flower delivery, get a cheese of the month subscription, join the Jeni’s pint club! If your partner is a truly good person, you can even set up a recurring donation to a cause or campaign they care about. If you feel like you’ve run out of gift ideas, something like this is a great option.
Something extravagant! I couldn’t close out this list without one last hurrah! If you feel like cosplaying as one of the Dubai boyfriends I see doling out Chanel bags left and right on TikTok, what better time than Valentines Day to go all out?! Some ideas aside from the aforementioned Chanel: This timeless bezel tennis bracelet from Material Good. The one and only It Girl Watch™. This Etoupe Birkin 25… or a trip to Paris to get one in person???
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There you have it! All my best ideas in one handy spot. Once again—feel free to forward to anyone who could use the hint. I’m sure they’d appreciate it (or could at least use the reminder to make a reservation…).