You may not want to celebrate Valentine's Day by doing something lavish, but there are still plenty of ways to make your partner feel the love. The best part? These cute gestures don't cost a cent.
Flowers and chocolates are standard fare on Valentine's Day, but if you're not into that - or you don't want to splash the cash, there are still so many things you can do to make your partner's day special.
They don't have to be grand gestures, below are some simple acts that focus on your loved one's wellbeing, and will have you both smiling from ear to ear this February 14th.
Make a Spotify playlist
While music can be a very personal thing, it's also a great way of letting someone know exactly how you feel. If you're not into sappy lyrics, certain songs can also inspire fond, nostalgic memories of your time together. "A playlist can emphasise how you feel about your partner," says relationships expert, Yvonne Allen. "Sharing your favourite tracks with your partner means they can share the enjoyment and the memories with you," she adds.
Do charity work together
While you may not have any time to tee up something to do on V-Day itself, you can always make the pledge together to give back. "Doing things together, particularly voluntary work with a charity that needs assistance is uplifting and gratifying. It is a great way to share the rewards of giving to others and spending time together," says Yvonne. You may have a new appreciation for your partner or your life after doing something genuinely 'good'.
Watch a movie together
This might be a part of your nightly routine, but it's important to enjoy these types of experiences as they can help strengthen your bond. "Movies are a great way to relax in each other's company and to have a shared experience to discuss," explains Yvonne. "Choosing a movie that you will both be likely to enjoy may be a challenge, so it requires some consultation and compromise. If there are two contenders, why not see both while enjoying ice cream or a glass of bubbles!"
Run a bath
"Sharing a warm bath together can be a relaxing, intimate experience, especially if you can dim the lights and enjoy the pleasures of touch," advises Yvonne. "Music, candles, and bubbles can create a relaxing, romantic environment, especially when you massage each other's backs," she adds. This is also a great way to disconnect from the pressures of life - and avoid being distracted by your screen.
Pack a special lunch
It doesn't have to be a heart-shaped cupcake, letting your partner know they're appreciated can come in the form of a little note inside their Tupperware. "Life can be so busy that we get caught up in the every day without acknowledging our caring for each other, and there are things around us every day that we can tweak or romanticise to let our partner know how much we love them," says Yvonne. A love note in your partner's pocket, car or left on the kitchen bench at home will make them smile.
You're so used to the way they do things well, you forget to tell them how much it means to you. Think about the things you love most about them - and don't be shy! "Let them know that you love the way they make your coffee, or how they look in the shower," says Yvonne. "Sometimes the smallest gestures can be the most memorable."
Give them a break
Life is about sharing the load, so trying some role reversal can make your partner feel valued. "Valentine's Day should be about celebrating the reasons why you fell in love and acknowledging the challenges you have overcome through ups and downs," explains Yvonne. So, if your partner is dutiful in the kitchen, laundry or with the kids, why not make an effort to help them out?