Unusual Valentine's gifts

By ghanamma
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Valentine's Day is upon us once again — heart-shaped balloons, expensive chocolates and cute fluffy little teddy bears, blah, blah, blah... Nothing is more clichéd than the smultch you find in the shops come the 14 February. Come on, you can do better. Check out our fabulous guide to alternative gifts for Valentine's…

Gifts for Her
Romantic getaway
This is the perfect gift to give your loved one. You don't have to go very far because there are many romantic getaways in South Africa. This could be the best thing for the two of you — no kids, no mother-in-laws and no noisy friends. You can spend some quality time together doing the things you normally don't have time for.

Bling bling!
Diamonds will melt any woman's heart and she will cherish the gift forever. Take it a step further by personalising the piece of jewellery with an inscription. Or get her a heart-shaped photo locket pendant. The trick is to put your snaps in the two halves of the heart, which she can wear on a chain. That way you can always be close to her heart.

Chocolate with a twist
Surprise your partner by preparing a romantic gift basket filled with champagne, chocolate body paint, romantic dice, and massage oil. You won't even have to leave the house for this picnic…

Pamper, pamper, pamper
You've been working hard, so this is the perfect day to indulge in a double spa treatment with your special someone.

Pick up some tips while you're enjoying that relaxing massage and score some major brownie points.

If you're far away from your lover on this day don't let that stop you from getting her the perfect gift. You can send her a spa voucher so that she can pamper herself. She will enjoy every minute of it.

A picture tells 1000 words
Be creative and get her an album. Decorate it with her favourite colours and can fill it with pictures of you as a couple from the first date up until now. Include little notes about your experiences and that ticket stub from your trip to Zanzibar…

Or gather all the things that you can find from your special times together such as photos from your honeymoon, movie tickets and any love letters that you may have written to one another. Put them in a pretty box and on Valentine's Day take a walk down memory lane. Keep the box so that you can add to it every year.

For centuries Valentine's Day has always been about the woman, well not anymore! Men too want to be loved once in a while. They may look tough but underneath all that muscle there is a softy who just wants to be cherished.

Gifts for Men
The way to a man's heart
Well, some things will never change — the way to a man's heart is still through his stomach. Make him happy by making his favourite meal and serving him with a smile. Play the 1950's housewife for an evening — it will make him feel good and boost his self-esteem.

Taking one for the team
Sure there's nothing romantic about rugby, but it's a fact that men like their sport, so be a sweetheart and get him tickets to his favourite sporting event. He will appreciate the gift and the next time you have to battle over the remote, you'll be one up on him.

Timing is everything
Make sure that he's always thinking about you by giving him a watch — every time he looks at it he'll be reminded of you. An added bonus is that it will help him to be on time for his appointments and, most importantly, he won't be late for your dates.

The romantic repertoire
He has been talking about that Apple ipod and how much he would love to own one for months. Sure it's pretty expensive, but you are doing it for love so it shouldn't matter (who says money can't buy you love?). Go out there and get it. Load up all his favourite songs and then look out for that smile on his face, which will make the dent in your bank balance worth it. Well, almost.

Share your alternative gift Valentines gift ideas below…