Ban Yourself From the "Red" Aisle
First of all, if you think that you can just stop by your local grocery store on your way to your girl's house and grab something from the Valentine's aisle, you are in more trouble than you thought. Stores have that "red" aisle to for desperate guys who are obligated to give their loved one something but don't know where to go or what to buy.
Let me share a secret with you - the trick to the perfect Valentine's gift is to put some thought and consideration into your present. What does your girl like? Maybe she's a reader who would love a day roaming the bookstores in a nearby large city. If she's one of those girls that like to be pampered, then get her a gift card to a local spa. Whatever it is, it should be something she will actually use and not just be tossed into a drawer and forgotten about.
Keep Your Ears and Eyes Open
In the weeks leading up to the big day, keep your ears open for clues. You'd be surprised at the number of gift-ideas and hints guys get each year but they're oblivion to them. (That's why the card and gift companies make millions each year off of that "red" aisle.)
Listen to what she has to say – that means no autopilot, guys! Walk the mall with her and see what she'd drawn to. Does she drool at the jewelry counters? Or maybe she browses the clothes or books?
Read the newspaper or magazines together. What does she point to? Ideas are everywhere…you just have to ears and eyes open!
This Isn't Your Mama's Hershey Bar!
Even if your girl loves sweets and chocolate, don't take the easy way out and grab a handful of cheap chocolate bars from the convenience store. Put some effort into it!
There are some excellent gourmet chocolatiers out there ready and willing to sell you some excellent goodies for your girl. A quick Google search of "gourmet chocolates" will get you site after site of unique gift ideas. There are imported chocolates (like Belgian truffles) and interesting combinations (like chocolate-covered bacon!) just waiting for you to discover. And if you're lucky, your girl might just share her chocolate goodies with you.
Jewel of Her Eye
When a lot of people think about Valentine's Day, they think of jewelry. This generalization drives me crazy – I don't wear jewelry and no matter what I tell guys, I seem to always get jewelry on Valentine's Day. Yes, I know it's the thought that counts but I'd rather have a $100 gift card to Barnes and Nobles or a nice meal out than another piece of junk to litter my jewelry box.
If do want to give jewelry for a Valentine's gift, there are a few things you should keep in mind:
First of all make sure your girl wears jewelry. You can figure this out by just looking at her. Does she wear a necklace? Is it the same one all the time or does it change? Are her ears pierced? (This is important – I've been given a wide array of earrings even though I don't have pierced ears.)
Secondly, don't just run into the nearest jewelry store and pick out the first thing you see. Also, don't just buy the biggest and most expensive thing you can find. Put some thought into it. Maybe there's a stone or mineral that is important to her.
If you want, you could personalize it by engraving it with a note or pet name that is special to you guys. The more special it is, the more apt she is to wear it.
Lingerie is one of those questionable Valentine's gifts. First of all, is your relationship far enough along to gift something as personal as that? If you two are just in the beginning of your relationship, this is the last thing you should gift. Secondly, make sure that she actually feels comfortable wearing lingerie. Some girls just aren't into that sort of frilly thing.
Flowering Vines of Love
Flowers are an easy way to score some points with any girl…but please, please, please don't just grab any old bouquet of flowers from the cold box at your local grocery store. Put some thought into it!
Find out what her favorite flowers are by either asking her, her friends, or family. Then work with a reputable florist to make a nice, looking bouquet that includes them all. You get extra points if you have it delivered (or hand-deliver it yourself) to her work during the busiest time of the day. The attention from her coworkers will make her feel super-special.
Planning a night out on the town – usually dinner followed by a bit of fun – is another great Valentine's Day gift…as long as you take your girl's preferences in consideration. Taking your fish-loving, music-aficionado girl out for Indian food followed by a movie is a nice thing but it's just not enough for a special day like Valentine's.
So, make a point at personalizing the night for your girl. If she likes wine, find a wine-tasting event. If she's into amusement rides, take her to a local park, festival, or boardwalk and ride the ride until she's sick. Buy tickets to a concert for your music lover. Take your dancer out clubbing or to a dance class. The sky is the limit!
As you can see, finding the perfect Valentine's Day present can be a challenge for even the more attentive guy. But as long as you put some thought into it and personalize it for your love, you can easily make it a day to remember.