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Ditch hearts and flowers, these are the Valentine's gifts you'll want to buy for yourself

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Amy Swales
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Hearts and flowers have their place, of course they do.

Listen, we love novelty chocolate as much as the next guy, but the sheer volume of terribly pink tat around this time of year can make Valentine’s shopping a total nightmare. Thus, we decided to put together a gift guide full of the things people might actually want and use.

We’re not judging if a teddy bear clutching a declaration of love symbolises all that is good and proper in your relationship. We just want to make sure you have choice.

Scroll through our gallery below for 37 Valentine’s Day presents you might have a hard time giving away this year…

(And don’t worry if you’ve left it late as several of these don’t need to be delivered – simply pop an email confirmation in an envelope and you’re good to go.)

  • S'well White Marble-Print Water Bottle

    Keep cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot (and cut down on wasteful plastic bottles while you’re at it).

    £35, libertylondon.com

  • Beoplay A1 Speaker

    Stylish and portable, the A1 bluetooth speaker has up to 24 hours of battery life and 360 sound. Please don’t play it on the bus.

    £199, beoplay.com

  • Folio Travel Notebook

    An exercise book for those who holiday a lot and those nursing a severe case of desk-side wanderlust.

    £8.95, libertylondon.com

  • Japan Centre Sushi Kit

    Fans of Japanese cuisine can make their own perfect sushi. Fish not included.

    £22.99, japancentre.com

  • Paperchase No Probllama A5 Thick Exercise Book

    A cute notebook for llama appreciators.

    £6, paperchase.co.uk

  • David Shrigley Tote Bag

    Don’t touch my stuff. Or my face or my hair.

    £25, shop.tate.org.uk

  • The Comedy Store Tickets

    With locations in London and Manchester, The Comedy Store pretty much guarantees a good night out.

    Tickets from £5, thecomedystore.co.uk

  • Muurla Moomin Retro Together Forever Enamel Mug

    If you insist on doing the sentimental thing, make it Moomin.

    £13.95, skandium.com

  • Bialetti Mini Express Coffee Pot Gift Set

    Go double of a Sunday morning with this twin espresso pot.

    £40, johnlewis.com

  • Atlas and I Personalised Map Photo Album

    A vintage map of a location of your choice can be printed onto a leather album for personalisation that isn’t cringe.

    Albums from £80, atlas-and-i.com

  • HonestBrew Mixed Case

    Order specific craft beers, mixed cases or a monthly subscription – tell them what you liked from the six-beer starter kit and the following month you’ll get a 12-beer case tailored to your taste. Or the recipient’s, whatever.

    Subscription from £48, honestbrew.co.uk

  • Slip Embroidered Silk Eye Mask

    Eye masks: the gift of sleep. Or foreplay.

    £34, net-a-porter.com

  • WOW Three-Day Pass

    Champion gender equality, celebrate achievements and discuss the obstacles women everywhere face at the Southbank Centre’s Wow – Women of the World festival.

    Three-day pass £50 (plus booking fee), southbankcentre.co.uk

  • Tipplesworth Old Fashioned Cocktail Case

    Everything you need to make delicious Old Fashioneds ‘til you can’t stand up.

    £185, harveynichols.com

  • Smeg ECF01 Coffee Machine

    Give the wide-eyed, fidgety gift of caffeine this February.

    £279.95, johnlewis.com

  • Tate Lichtenstein Whaam! Explosion Cushion Cover

    If the sofa is where much of your relationship takes place, you should make sure it’s the best sofa it can be.

    £20, shop.tate.org.uk

  • Prince Charles Cinema Membership

    The Prince Charles Cinema is a shining independent light in the overpriced sea of chains that is Leicester Square. Members enjoy even cheaper tickets than usual, discounted food and drink and regular £1 screenings.

    £10 per year or £50 lifetime, princecharlescinema.com

  • Greenwich Meridien Sleeve Case for iPad

    You might as well buy something for the third person in your relationship.

    £100, greenwich.design

  • Warner Edwards Victoria's Rhubarb Gin

    If you can’t bear to not gift something pink on Valentine’s Day, for God’s sake make it gin.

    £19.95, 31dover.com 

  • Aspinal of London Double Hip Flask

    Why take one dram when you can take two? Sharing: your call.

    £85, houseoffraser.co.uk

  • Oliver Bonas Filter Photo Album

    Both Insta-addicts? Compile your best shots in an album. Narcissism of giver = optional extra.

    £25, oliverbonas.com

  • Pact Coffee Blending Pack

    The two coffees in this pack, Kamegeli Nyarusiza and El Cabildo, were designed to work together (aah). Pact also has a subscription service starting from £6.95.

    £9.95 (available 1 February), pactcoffee.com

  • Kawaii Panda Sandwich Making Set

    Give a loved one the ability to turn bread into pandas.

    £5.99, tofucute.com

  • Oliver Bonas Marble & Copper Bar Tools Set

    When it’s a classy cocktail, it doesn’t count toward recommended intake.

    £60, oliverbonas.com

  • Amelia Rope Dark Cube and Pale Bar Duo

    Incredible chocolate, fact. This set comprises 24 dark cubes and two ‘pale’ bars, including the signature pale rose.

    £39, ameliarope.com

  • A Quarter Of... Retro Sweets Cube

    If the person you’re with wouldn’t be happy to receive this, dump them.

    £9.95, aquarterof.co.uk

  • The Perfect Measure Whisky and Chocolate Pairing Set

    Booze and chocolate, under the pretence of palate education.

    £44.95, thewhiskyexchange.com

  • Diptyque Rosa Mundi Candle

    If floral you must go, turn to the experts in all things candle: this is a limited edition rose scent.

    £48, selfridges.com

  • Atlas Obscura

    An alternative travel guide, Atlas Obscura: An Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders documents the incredible, the unique and the downright bizarre.

    £25, atlasobscura.com

  • Alessi Marli Bottle Opener

    Double-ended. Shows you care (about whether their bottle gets opened).

    £17, amara.com

  • Lucky Peach Subscription

    A quarterly bible of gastronomic geekery for anyone interested in food (somehow managing to be both cool and nerdy).

    £9.59 per issue, newsstand.co.uk

  • Sipsmith Sipping Society

    Hello: four different (and often experimental) gins through the letterbox each quarter.

    £45, sipsmith.com

  • Merchant Archive Zinc Pineapple

    Its scientifically impossible to have a bad dinner party when there’s a pineapple ice bucket in attendance. 

    £195, merchantarchive.com 

  • Shark's Fin & Sichuan Pepper by Fuchsia Dunlop

    Go beyond sweet and sour (and nod to your shared love of stuffing your face, perhaps) with this colourful, engaging memoir delving into the incredible cuisine of China.

    £9.99, waterstones.com

  • Crystal Head Vodka

    Stylish, crystal-filtered vodka from, er, Dan Ackroyd (yep, really).

    £36.95, 31dover.com

  • Grüum Kit

    Level up beard skills. Choose products from three categories (shave, beard and cleanse) as a one-off set or a personalised monthly subscription.

    From £6 a month, gruum.com

  • Cohorted Beauty Box

    The high-end subscription beauty box destined to rinse the bank account when the recipient falls in love with products from Nars, Bobbi Brown, Chanel and more. 

    £35 a month, cohorted.co.uk

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Amy Swales

Amy Swales is a freelance writer who likes to eat, drink and talk about her dog. She will continue to plunder her own life and the lives of her loved ones for material in the name of comedy, catharsis and getting pictures of her dog on the internet.

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