8 Unique Gifts for Valentine’s Day

Fuji/Amazon
Fuji/Amazon

There's a lot of pressure on Valentine's Day to find a unique gift for your special someone. Go beyond the typical heart-shaped box of chocolates with these gifts that have a personal touch for all different tastes.

1. Planet Lollipops; $30

Galaxy lollipops
UncommonGoods

Skip the chocolates this year and give your significant other sweets that not only taste good, but also say you mean the galaxy to me. Each lollipop is decorated with an edible 2D image representing all eight planets in our solar system (plus Pluto) and the Sun. And each one has its own flavor: Mercury is tropical punch; Venus is cherry; Earth is cotton candy; Mars is pear; Jupiter is Key lime; Saturn is guava; Uranus is blackberry; Neptune is mango; Pluto is strawberry-kiwi; and the Sun is marshmallow.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

2. saint candles of historical, literary, and cultural icons; $14

Candle with Jane Austin on it
Unemployed Philosophers Guild/Amazon

The Unemployed Philosophers Guild adds a touch of personal flair to the traditional saint candle by slapping icons from pop culture, literature, and politics right onto them. Decorated with the likes of James Baldwin, Jane Austen, and Harriet Tubman, just to name a few, you can give your loved one a unique gift adorned with their personal hero.

Buy it: Amazon

3. Fuji Instant mini Film Camera; $116

Fuji film camera
Fuji/Amazon

While your phone is great for capturing photos, there’s something special about being able to hold actual prints in your hand. But unlike traditional film cameras, you won’t need to wait on getting pictures developed as the Fuji prints out credit card-sized photographs instantly. With a built-in flash and manual brightness adjustment, this gift is perfect for the photographer in your life.

Buy it: Amazon

4. 100 Things to Do Scratch-Off Poster; $15

Scratch-off  poster
UncommonGoods

Give the gift of spending time together with this scratch-off poster of bucket list activities you can do as a couple. Once you've done an activity, just scratch off the top layer of each panel to reveal an illustration that goes along with the different ideas, like a ski trip or bungee jumping. And once you’ve scratched them all off, you’ll have a unique piece of wall art to commemorate all the adventures you’ve had together. Or if you’d rather, check out this scratch-off poster with 100 different date ideas.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

5. Bob ross mug; $16

Bob Ross Coffee Mugs
UncommonGoods

Everyone needs to be reminded that "We don't make mistakes, we have happy accidents" every now and again. And what better way to remind your significant other of those wise words than with Bob Ross and a morning cup of coffee? Like Bob Ross's canvases, this mug looks blank at first, but simply add a hot beverage to make a beautiful nature scene and his signature quote appear.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

6. Valentine hot Chocolate on a Stick; $15

hot chocolate
UncommonGoods

Hot chocolate just got even sweeter with these added hearts inscribed with cute messages. Depending on your recipient's preference, you can order a three-pack of Belgian milk chocolate or French dark truffle.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

7. Literary Scarves; $48

A scarf with passages written on it
UncommonGoods

Each of these scarves is silkscreened by hand and contains passages from either Jane Eyre, Alice in Wonderland, Pride and Prejudice, or Sense and Sensibility. They're also made of medium-weight cotton, meaning they're perfect for early spring weather, which is just a few weeks away. If you aren’t interested in those particular titles, check out the artist’s other literary and music scarves.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

8. Bourbon-Infused Coffee Beans; $20

Bourbon-infused coffee
UncommonGoods

If you have someone that loves their bourbon and a morning cup of coffee, give them the gift of both. These are 100 percent Arabica beans that are infused with bourbon for a kick of flavor without any actual alcohol. And if your loved one is more into wine, check out this merlot-infused coffee.

Buy it: UncommonGoods

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Put Shakespeare's Best Insults On a Poster, Coffee Mug, or Even Some Bandages

Take your insult inspiration from the master: William Shakespeare.
Take your insult inspiration from the master: William Shakespeare.
Curious Charts Commission/Three Rivers Press/Amazon

If you’ve ever struggled to find the words to describe how angry or frustrated someone is making you, perhaps William Shakespeare, iconic writer and master of insults, can help.

Adorned with 100 insults from the Bard's many works, this poster from Curious Charts Commission (Amazon, $25) is the perfect reference piece to hang in your home or office for when you're struggling to think of the perfect takedown for anyone who crosses you. To help you get started, the 18-inch-by-24-inch poster is broken up into sections that include food and drink; types of individuals; inanimate objects; bodily qualities; creatures; and—of course—personal attributes and traits. Once you’ve decided the optimal route to take, you have a wide array of put-downs to choose from, ranging from “Were I like thee, I’d throw away myself,” to slightly simpler ones like, “You egg!”

The only drawback to the poster is that you can't take it everywhere with you. But the 14-ounce Shakespeare insults mug ($16), on the other hand, is the perfect choice for snark on the go. So next time a chatty co-worker tries to tell you about their weekend before you've even had your Monday morning coffee, you can simply look up and call them the "anointed sovereign of sighs and groans."

A mug decorated with Shakespeare insults.
Shakespeare insult mug from Unemployed Philosopher's Guild.
Unemployed Philosopher's Guild/Amazon

If, after all that, you’re still struggling to find the words, Shakespeare’s Insults: Educating Your Wit ($12), a book of 5000 slights pulled from 38 of Shakespeare’s plays, can be of assistance. Or, you can help heal a physical wound by dishing out an emotional one with these Shakespearean insult bandages ($6). You get 15 in a pack, and each box comes with a prize inside. 

Shakespeare Insult Bandages.
Shakespeare insult bandages found on Amazon.
Accoutrements/Amazon

Beyond a repertoire of insults, Shakespeare also coined many words we still use today. Check out the full list here.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don't return, so we're only happy if you're happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

These Eco-Friendly Bags Are Organic and Break Down in 18 Months or Less

A-Zero
A-Zero

If you’re looking to cut down on the amount of single-use plastics in your life, then reach for these fully compostable organic bags.

The A-Zero bags (which are available on Kickstarter here) may look a lot like their plastic counterparts, but they’re actually made from vegetable starch. According to the campaign, these totes are 100 percent organic, are harmless to nature, and can break down in a matter of 18 months—unlike plastic bags, which take hundreds of years. Each bag also features unique designs created by different artists from all over the world.

When it comes to sizes, you have a few different options. The smallest bag, ideal for snacks and sandwiches, is leak-proof and freezer-friendly, and can even be used in the microwave. A-Zero also makes leak-proof trash bags, grocery bags that can hold up to 18 pounds of food, and a refillable bag dispenser that can hold 20 or more grocery bags and can clip onto a backpack or purse.

You might be thinking that you already have a reusable tote at home, but unfortunately, these also have a detrimental effects on the environment. A 2011 British government study [PDF] estimated that with all the water and energy it takes to create a cotton bag, each one has a carbon footprint of 598.6 pounds of CO2, compared to a plastic bag’s 3.48 pounds.

With $22,522 raised, A-Zero bags already surpassed its original $8000 goal. But you can still help bring the project to life and get your own eco-friendly bags by heading here. Pledge tiers start at $29, and the campaign will be live until April 11.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don't return, so we're only happy if you're happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

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