People are so divided on the subject of Valentine’s Day. The romantics among us get excited about giving and receiving gifts, candlelit dinners, and fancy chocolates. Then there are those who are rather more cynical, deeming Valentine’s to be little more than a greeting-card-company-sponsored, made-up holiday. And then there are the people who call it Singleness Awareness Day and dislike it for fairly obvious reasons.
I don’t have strong feelings either way about Valentine’s Day, but I’m obviously not crazy about the consumerism and waste it inspires. I’ve spent the past few years trying to find fun ways to celebrate the holiday without having to buy silly, heart-shaped, plastic stuff.
While the colors most associated with Valentine’s Day are pink and red, there are a ton of ways we can turn the holiday a little more green.
How to Have a DIY Valentines Day
Make your own cards or letters
Could you spend $7 on a card that is made out of shiny paper and glitter? Yeah, you could, but it makes much more sense to make your Valentines at home. For starters, do you really need a card when you could just write a nice letter? Trade out the bleached paper for some recycled paper and write a letter that truly came from your heart. Only you know how you really feel, anyway.
If you have children who want to make Valentines for their friends, let them work on the crafts with you. There’s no need to buy a box of cartoonish Valentines. Some craft paper and pens are all you need to help your kids give their friends inexpensive, personalized messages.
Try out some fun candy recipes
Let’s think about the candies typically handed out for Valentine’s Day. We have boxes of mediocre chocolate, chalky sweet-hearts, and bright red (full of dye) lollipops. It’s all pretty and fun, but it’s full of stuff that we don’t want to be consuming or giving our kids. This year for Valentine’s Day, start ahead of time and make your own candies. Here is a recipe for homemade chocolates, and a list of several others from The Nourishing Gourmet.
Note from Matt and Betsy: don’t forget about this delicious cinnamon roasted almonds recipe!
Get pretty with your own, all-natural beauty supplies
Lucky for you, we have pretty much every all-natural, DIY beauty supply you could want! When you’re trying to get all dolled up and pretty for your date, there’s no need to buy the expensive stuff that comes from dubious resources. Here’s a list of everything you could need:
- Give yourself naturally pretty nails.
- Make your own sugar wax for leg-hair removal.
- Whip up some sea-salt spray for wavy hair.
- Prepare ahead of time with homemade pore strips.
- Get your lips all good and kissable with homemade lip balm.
- Exfoliate ahead of time for extra-smooth skin.
- Use what you have at home to make some cool face masks.
Make your own candles for the mood lighting
Did you know that most commercially made candles can be harmful to our bodies? Heavily scented candles are well known triggers for migraines and other headaches. Most store bought candles are made with paraffin, which is petroleum based.
Since you’ll probably want a nice candlelit dinner for Valentine’s Day, you should consider making some of your own candles a few days ahead of time. We have a great how-to guide for making all-natural beeswax candles. These also make great gifts!
Give your loved one living flowers
A bouquet of flowers is a Valentine’s Day staple, but a dozen red roses will only last a week or so. It can be nearly impossible to find organic, sustainably-raised bouquets, too. What if you went a slightly different route this year and gave living flowers instead? Houseplants help purify the air inside your home, bring a touch of the outdoors inside, and last for years with proper treatment. You can choose a plant based on your significant other’s aptitude for keeping plants alive. You might not want to buy an orchid for a novice, but an African violet is great for anyone. Isn’t a living, long-term plant a better symbol for your relationship than a bouquet of cut flowers, anyway?
How about you?
Will you be using any of these green ideas to celebrate Valentine’s Day? What other ideas do you have? Share in the comments section below!