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RelationshipsThe lazy man’s guide to the perfect Valentine’s night in

The lazy man’s guide to the perfect Valentine’s night in

Valentine’s Day, who needs it? The origins of Valentine’s Day are anything but romantic, and it has the potential to be a total relationship deal breaker—53% of women say they would dump their partner if they weren’t treated on Valentine’s Day.

With that in mind, ‘Netflix and Chill’ isn’t going to cut it when February 14th finally arrives. Instead, why not pull out all the stops to give your date a Valentine’s Day they’ll never forget? Or, at least make it look like you have… Read on to find out how to pull off the perfect Valentine’s night in with minimal effort.

Get gourmet food delivered to your door

If a mac and cheese is about as far as your culinary skills will take you, it’s best you leave the menu to the professionals. But on the flip side, your loved one will be bitterly disappointed if your Valentine’s Day surprise turns out to be a trusty Chinese take-out. Enter Gousto: the recipe box company that’s about to give you the cooking prowess of Gordon Ramsay—at least that’s what your partner will think.

The service enables you to whip up a selection of tasty home cooked meals by delivering batches of fresh, perfectly-measured ingredients alongside easy to follow instructions. There are over 20 recipes to choose from, including options for specific diet types like vegetarian and gluten-free, and Gousto have even added three swanky new recipes especially for Valentine’s Day. Choose from rump steak with a creamy mustard sauce and parmentier potatoes, pan-fried scallops accompanied by a brown butter sauce and pomme puree, or truffled mushroom linguine served with a side of garlic bread.

As well as saving you a trip to the grocery store, the end result will convince your partner you’ve spent all day slaving away in the kitchen. In reality, most of Gousto recipes take no more than 30 minutes to cook. The company also offers weekly, fortnightly, and monthly subscription services if you fancy playing chef a while longer. Just make sure you throw out the delivery box before your date arrives…

Follow with a modern cheesebox and wine tasting

They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, but we know the same is equally true of our better halves. Why not top off your extraordinary dinner with a delicious cheese course? The folks at The Cheese Geek have put a spin on the traditional cheese hamper with their modern cheeseboxes, which blend popular classics with lesser-known cheese types based on the season, and the preferences of you and your partner. There are currently four different cheeseboxes to choose from, some of which jazz up a killer cheese selection with crackers, condiments and cured meats, as well as melt-in-your-mouth chocolates—and not the tacky heart-shaped kind, either.

Pairing the cheeses with various wines is sure to add a touch of class to your Valentine’s night, but don’t worry if you’re more familiar with a bottle of beer than a glass of fine Rioja. The Cheese Geek team include tasting notes in all their cheeseboxes so you’ll know exactly what tipples you need to intensify your cheese tasting experience. You can also seriously impress your date with your knowledge of each cheese. Plus, there’s a scorecard which allows you to rate and keep track of the cheeses you’ve tried should you ever want another cheesebox delivery. We have no doubt that you will.

Set the mood with the perfect playlist

Mixtapes were the ultimate way to prove your love back in the ‘80s, but does anyone own a cassette player nowadays? Today, music lives online, and music-lovers around the world have worked hard to put together perfect Valentine’s Day compilations, so you don’t have to.

For instance, Spotify has created the Valentine’s Day Love playlist—102 of “the most romantic tracks of all time”, including hit songs from the likes of Ed Sheeran and Adele, as well as classics by Bryan Adams, Cyndi Lauper, and The Beatles. You can find lots of similar playlists courtesy of your fellow Spotify users, and the streaming service also provides a selection of Valentine’s Day albums of various genres including R&B and reggae. Other assortments pay tribute to classic romantic movies like Dirty Dancing and Titanic. Or, there are even tongue-in-cheek anti-Valentine’s Day mixes if you want to see if your date secretly shares your cynicism towards the occasion, but don’t dare ask. Whatever the vibe you’re going for, you’re sure to find a playlist that perfectly sets the mood on Valentine’s night.

Send a card with a special touch

Nothing says ‘I picked this up 10 minutes ago’ like a Hallmark card stamped with a teddy bear clutching a heart. Instead, opt for a card with character and watch your date’s face light up as they open it.

ebsites like Moonpig and Funky Pigeon allow you to edit the text on their greeting cards so you can add a name, or other personal information that helps tailor the card specifically to the recipient. Not On The High Street sells a number of intricate 3D designs that are too pretty to ever throw away, while thortful is home to a selection of millennial-friendly comedy cards guaranteed to make your partner smile. Think cats, emojis, cheeky innuendos, food, and pop culture references.

You don’t need to go out of your way to find something unique—just spend a few minutes browsing online and have the card sent straight to you door. Not only will the perfect card get you bonus points for creativity, it also leaves your loved one with a special something to remember the best Valentine’s Day they’ve ever had!

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