Chocolates and roses, dinners and movies, kisses and cupids… Valentine’s Day is on its way.
You may want to sit down for this tasty bit of history… Valentine’s Day started out as a ritual involving naked people smacking each other with goats and dogs! That’s right, Valentine’s Day has turned from a pre-Roman empire ritual, known as Lupercalia, into a demonstration of commercialisation at its finest. The US alone spend approximately $19.6 billion a year on Valentine’s Day, and we can’t even begin to imagine how much waste this involves too.
Who wants to be told when to show their love, and how to do it? Who wants to spend hundreds of dollars on items that may or may not end up in landfill a day later? Not us!
Instead of reverting back to Valentine’s Day origins (sacrificing goats and dogs isn’t something we’re up for!), let's turn Valentine’s Day into a wholesome celebration, that shows love for humans AND our planet.
If you’re a hopeless romantic, and cannot help but buy your lover a gift, opt for a New Zealand made, eco-friendly option. There’s no doubt Valentine’s Day boosts the economy, so use this opportunity to vote with your pocket: buy gifts that are ethically and sustainably made.
Our wish list:
Go on an Adventure
A box of chocolates will be eaten in a flash (not to mention the plastic packaging), a balloon will deflate in a few weeks, and flowers won’t last much longer than the chocolate.
Take your Valentine out!
Gift them an experience they’ll treasure for years, perhaps a lifetime.
- Set off on your favourite hike
- Double date with friends (better yet, throw a party with friends so everyone is included!)
- Make a meal for your parents - earn some brownie points
- See a movie, or avoid the crowds and stay indoors
- Adventure somewhere you’ve both never been before
- Plan a cliche picnic at sunset (grab your picnic ingredients at your local bulk bin store)
Approximately 180 million cards are exchanged every single Valentine’s Day! A sweet note to say how much you admire someone is a great way to voice your love, but there are ways to do this without scathing the planet.
First, hunt around for a local card maker, who uses eco-friendly materials. Buying from a local artist will mean your card is one of a kind, instilling meaning and thought in your loving gesture.
If you can’t find a local artist who suits your style, make your own! Get creative with magazines, old cardboard boxes, and create something your Valentine will treasure forever.
Roses are red, violets are blue, here’s an eco bouquet, because I love you!
The flower industry has a massive impact on our planet. Flowers are pumped with chemicals to grow faster, wrapped in plastic for protection, and can travel thousands of miles before ending up in your Valentine’s hands.
Before you jump into buying just any bouquet, ask your local florist where the flowers were grown. Try your best to find locally grown blooms, minus the plastic wrap. If you want to go a step further, growing your own flowers will be certain to sweep your Valentine off their feet too.
Top tip: If you pop in before closing time, a florist may even sell you (for a discounted price) the unused flowers from the day, that would have otherwise ended up in the bin!
Whether you’re a Valentine’s Day fiend, or a 14th of February grinch, Valentine’s Day is coming. The 14th of February may be just another day, but if not, use these ideas to show your Valentine you think they’re tops, while loving on the planet too.
And hey… if you’re expecting a date with your Valentine’s this year, it wouldn’t hurt to send them this cheeky blog post, so they know what will truly make you happy.