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They make you laugh, they make the tea, they get rid of the spiders… There are lots of reasons we appreciate our favourite people. As February 14th takes on new meaning, here are our top tips for Valentines for best friends, family, deskmates and the one you love.
Once upon a time, not too long ago, Valentine’s Day was defined by exchanging love letters, awaiting bunches of roses, hand-holding and candlelit dinners for two. While for many the day of love is still marked with romantic rituals, in recent years it’s taken on a new dimension – and not for the first time.
The history of Valentine’s Day is filled with expressions of non-romantic love, perhaps the most extreme of which was the 18th-century British ‘vinegar Valentine’, a card featuring a playful insult! Around the same time, we Brits were also busy giving cards and tokens of affection to friends and family. Meanwhile, in Finland and Mexico people have long given gifts to friends, while in Japan women give platonic chocolate gifts to male co-workers and friends on Valentine’s Day, and men then return the gesture on March 14th.
In the UK, this traditional aspect of the day has been lost over the years, leaving it the preserve of romantic couples. Now other types of love have begun to take it back. Love it or hate it, the 2010s saw the emergence of the ‘Galentine’s Day’ trend, in which women friends shower one another with appreciation – often in the form of brunch and gifts.
More recently still, February 14th has increasingly begun to include the notion of love for ourselves – ‘self-love’ – which promotes self-acceptance, self-care and mindfulness.
Brave new world
How to navigate a Valentine’s Day that both revives historic traditions and celebrates new ones? Two words will help you show your appreciation to parents, siblings, friends and colleagues alike, without the awkwardness: ‘Just because’. Add a card, handwritten note, postcard or even a Post-It note to their gift that begins with these two words, and leave it on their pillow, sneak it into their bag, slip it into their suitcase or pop it on their desk.
Need a little inspiration? Striking the right note depends on who you’re talking to.
• Just because… you make me laugh
• Just because… you’re my partner in crime
• Just because… you’re always first at the bar
• Just because… you’re the life and soul of the party
• Just because… you’re in all my stories
• Just because… you know my favourite song/chocolate/movie
• Just because… you make the tea
• Just because… you laugh at my jokes
• Just because… you put up with me
• Just because… you pick up my socks
• Just because… you help with my homework
• Just because… you do so much
• Just because… you’re there no matter what
• Just because… I miss your face
• Just because… you get rid of the spiders
• Just because… you walk the dog
• Just because… you’re my other half
• Just because… you give me butterflies
• Just because… you’re the best
• Just because… I love you
Feeling more effusive? Our in-depth tips for what to write in a Valentine’s Day card will take yours up a notch.
Give it your all
What to give with those perfectly pitched notes? Sharing the love further and wider this Valentine’s Day also means a richer roster of potential presents. Return the favour to the household’s resident drinks-maker with the Velvetiser: the in-home hot chocolate system that serves a deeply satisfying cup at perfect drinking temperature in just 2.5 minutes. A token for that long-suffering someone who always ends up walking the family canine, come rain or shine? Raise a smile with A Dozen Dapper Dogs. For a work friend, Chocolate Macarons make the perfect ‘thanks-for-covering-for-me’ gesture. And for the special someone in your life, embrace the romance with the Way to Your Heart Hamper – an undeniably romantic curation of chocolate and top-flight bubbles.
Need more Valentine’s Day ideas for friends, parents and better halves? Our GiftFinder will speedily present you with appropriate gift options for everyone you appreciate this February 14th.