Valentine’s Day: young professionals either love it or hate it. Even if you are not single on this day, it still can be stressful, awkward, disappointing or a plain headache for some. Although Valentine’s Day should be about spending quality time with significant others, lovers and crushes alike, the inevitable issue arises about gifts.
It makes the question especially awkward for new couples; how many dates to you have to go on to even be considered a couple? And if you’re not a couple, do you need to buy a gift? Luckily, we have broken it down into categories with some gift-giving suggestions depending on your relationship status.
Locked Down (aka Married)
For the married young professional, there is usually a higher expectation for a Valentine’s Day gift. After all, you have all of those Valentine’s Days past to live up to. Although married YPs typically tend to spend more on their significant others than those unwed, a gift is expected to be meaningful or at least decently thought out.
Fun, flirty and appropriately pink must-haves for spring include Versace’s pastel pink coloured timepieces (pictured above), like Versace’s Perpetuelle ($1,295), Eon ($4,500) and Destiny Spirit ($2,050). Keep in mind if you are going this route, though undoubtedly a welcomed gift, don’t forget to include a meaningful card. For women (especially married women), a card is more important than any lavish gift.
For a more affordable option that’s still guaranteed to warm her heart, we love Biko’s Heart Filigrae Locket Necklace. This adds an element of thought to the traditional gift of jewellery by putting a photo of that special someone in this brass locket. The extra step makes more of a difference to the YP female than you could imagine and, at just $79, it won’t break your mortgage-strapped wallet.
Silk sheets and duvets covers by Cilque. Nothing says luxury and sensuality more than silk. Our favourites include the Belgian Chocolate Lustrous Silk Duvet Cover paired with the Crème Brulee lustrous bed set, which includes 2 pillowcases, an oversized top sheet and a deep-fitted sheet. Yes, so it is a bit of a self-serving gift, but it is something you will both benefit from, which is what marriage is all about anyway, right? This Toronto-based company offers free shipping across Canada. Duvet covers start at $395 and sheets begin at $449.
Sunglasses are always a welcomed gift because, let’s be honest, us YPs can never have enough. We suggest Yves Saint Laurent Aviators with Tortoise Frame (pictured below) as a fresh spin on the traditional aviator that is a staple in many young professional man’s wardrobe. Consistent with YSL masculine products, these vintage-inspired sunglasses are sophisticated, chic and stylish. To add a personal touch, fold up a note on nice stationary and put it in the sunglass case. This, of course, is in addition to a card. $295.
Going YP Steady
We typically refer to “going steady” as a relationship that is exclusive and has been going on for at least six months. Match.com found that the majority of Canadians believe you should spend at least $75 to $100 if you have been dating for six months or more. We can pretty much guarantee that many young professionals would likely spend a little more than this, especially if it is the perfect gift, and especially if you are really into the person.
The Thomas Sabo Winged Heart Pendant Key (pictured below) is a perfect piece of jewellery that won’t a) scare her away or b) give her premature hope that the next piece of jewellery will be a ring. It is fun, flirty and romantic, but still casual enough for the couple that has been dating for less than a year. $219.
Pottery Barn Vintage Metal Necklace Stand. If you are not at the point in your relationship to purchase jewellery for the jewellery-loving female in your life, this necklace stand marks a well-received alternative. While most females will already own her own meticulously organized jewellery box, necklaces – especially over-sized, statement-making ones – are sometimes awkward and every YP female can use one of these.
James Perse Jersey Lined Bathrobe. This is perfect for the laidback yet refined YP and is not like any bathrobe he owns or has ever owned. We love the comfortable, yet sophisticated design of these robes, notably the soft terry with jersey lining; we especially love the ones that come with hoods. This is intimate enough to be a gift he wouldn’t likely receive for Christmas from his brother, but not too intimate for the still relatively new relationship.
Swarovski Fasten Black Diamond Cuff Links (pictured above). We love the subtle sophistication of these ruthenium-plated cuff links with a bezel-set square black diamond. They are refined, yet simple enough to please most young professional men, even if you don’t know him well enough to know his tastes inside out yet. $85.
According to Match.com, 51 per cent of Canadians believe you should spend more than $50 on a gift if you have been dating for one to six months. In other words, a gift appears to be essential and expected. We recommend:
Victoria’s Secret Sexy Little Things Noir Tease Ultimate Gift Set. Yes, so it is a little “mall-ish” and an easy option, but if things are still casual, this is a cute and appropriate gift. The gift set features a seductively V-Day appropriate twist of juicy fruits and florals and includes an eau de parfum, scented body lotion, scented body mist, scented bubble bath and a scented candle for $75.
Pottery Barn’s Hotel Silver-Plated Champagne Bucket is crafted by hand of brass, plated in silver, and polished for a rich lustre. Monogramming is available for an additional charge. Although it may get a little pricey, add a bottle of champagne to the bucket because it isn’t just the ladies who love champagne; odds are it will be cracked open that night. $100.
Teroforma Whiskey Stones (and accompanying Scotch Bottle). Teroforma’s Whisky Stones are conveniently available at Chapters stores, which are usually conveniently located near liquor stores. The whiskey stones are flavourless, non-porous cubes that will chill a glass of fine scotch without watering it down. These make the perfect addition to any YP male’s kitchen. If you don’t want a gift that screams “sentimental” or that will scare him away, this may do just the opposite. The whiskey rocks retail for $24.
Rolling Stone 1,000 Covers: A history of the Most Influential Magazine in Pop Culture History. We’ve said it before, and we will say it again: YPs can’t get enough of coffee table books. At this point, you hopefully know him well enough to gage his likes, tastes and interests but we have a feeling this is one guaranteed to please even the pickiest YP male and his pop culture junkie house guests. $25.
This is a tough one, especially if you have not had “the talk” and are dating casually. If you are in one of these situations, we feel for you on this sure-to-be awkward day. Match.com found that over one third of Canadians believe you should spend between $25 and $50 if you have been dating for less than a month. This is where things get tricky if you want to steer away from the traditional chocolate or flowers.
In these situations, however, chocolate could in fact be the best option, but not to worry; in general, Match.com found chocolate to be the number one gift that Canadian singles want to give and receive on Valentine’s Day, with forty per cent of singles replying that they will give the gift and 30 per cent saying they would gladly receive it. Alternatively, or in addition to, try:
No-fail options that could more easily be stocking stuffers than a romantic gift include things like yoga passes to her favourite yoga studio or a mani/pedi package at her nail studio of choice.
By the same token, grab tickets to a comedy club, Starbucks gift certificates for the daily visitor or, if you can afford it, tickets to his favourite sporting event.
Friends with Benefits
In this scenario, the only gift necessary is eachother. Don’t confuse things further by trying to make it something that it isn’t, especially if you know this is all you will ever be.
There you have it, lovers! Hopefully we’ve made the whole gift-giving process easier for you this year. You’re welcome.