painless shopping

19 Floral Gifts for Valentine’s Day That Aren’t Actual Flowers

Photo: courtesy of the retailer

As much as we all love fresh flowers, there are some (admittedly cynical) reasons not to give them to your loved one on Valentine’s Day: Real flowers, by nature, don’t last. They also make a mess, dropping pollen and petals all over your table. And since some flowers can be poisonous if ingested, they’re not the safest choice to have around kids or pets. So if the object of your affection is allergic, has a mischievous cat, or would rather not spend their time cleaning up fallen stamen, we’d like to suggest the following alternatives. Here are 19 Strategist-favorite Valentine’s Day gifts that possess the best attributes of flowers without actually being real flowers.

For valentines who bring their lunch to work

A sustainable tote bag from Strategist-fave Baggu that’s emblazoned with a classic “thank-you bag” red rose.

For valentines who prefer flowers in a book

In Full Flower

A coffee-table book that lets anyone enjoy an elaborate bouquet with no chance of sneezing.

For busy valentines

This floral notebook from Strat-approved stationery brand Rifle Paper Co. will make to-do lists a tiny bit more romantic.

For valentines who get turned on by mood lighting

Boy Smell candles have shown up on more than a few Strategist gift guides because their scents — including the above Cinderose — skew earthy and herbal rather than sweet and perfume-y.

For valentines who look forward to bedtime

Marimekko’s signature graphic flower print will make sure you and your valentine always go to bed happy.

For fickle valentines

Photo: courtesy of the Retailer

This removable wallpaper will last forever. But if you get tired of it before then it’s also easy to take down.

For flower lovers who travel constantly

A remarkably real-looking orchid that even prolonged absence can’t kill.

For lovers with lips like no other

A tinted balm made with chrysanthemums that adjusts its color when applied based on your valentine’s unique pH-level.

For lovers with chapped lips

And one so moisturizing it turns even the driest lips into dewy petals.

For wildflower aficionados

A highly rated duvet set adorned with botanical drawings of dandelions and wild roses.

For best friends who moved away

Recommended by teachers, this cheery pop-up daisy card will make any friend feel appreciated.

For first crushes

LEGO Flower Display

A perfect mix of romance and, well, Legos.

For college crushes who don’t own a vase

A dorm-friendly (and easy-to-install) poster that’ll remind them of you while they study for that biochem exam.

For valentines who love throwing parties

For interior design lovers


No design nerd could resist this stunning collection of Morris’s flower-centric creations.

For valentines who just moved into a new apartment

For wearers of nothing but museum-quality jewels

Earrings based on original brooch designs housed at the Met.

For those who prefer wearing flowers

This supportive and pretty embroidered petunia bra from our roundup of the best bras is the right balance of sexy and practical.

For those who prefer always having flowers on hand

We’ve included an older version of this pressed-flower phone case in a ton of gift guides because, quite frankly, it’s nice to look at. And now it’s also available for the iPhone 11.

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

19 Floral Gifts for Valentine’s Day That Aren’t Flowers