Valentine's Day is just days away, so I've rounded up the top five ways to show yourself — and him — a little love.
1. '1001 Ways To Be Romantic'
This bestselling book, authored by Gregory J.P. Godek, serves up both practical and fanciful advice for becoming "more romantic than ever."
In it, essential advice for men — including "never, never, never" joke about her PMS, call your wife your "old lady" or ask about dinner before saying "I love you" — marries sensible advice for women — such as "never, never, never" return his car with an empty gas tank or withhold sex as punishment.
But the best parts of this book are out-of-the box tips and tricks to find or restore romance in your relationships. Daily checklists serve up ways to be more romantic every day, while chapters on kissing, writing love notes and even erotica are sure to educate even the most seasoned romantics.
2. Love yourself
It's been said that you can't find love until you love yourself. That's why each February, National Heart Month, my beauty site, PrettyCity.com, hosts "Love You," a monthlong campaign held in partnership with The Heart Truth, that encourages women to take care of their own well-being.
Spas and salons across the nation offer their services at deeply discounted rates for the entire month of February to encourage consumers to show themselves a little love. Locally, head to Awa Spa and Wellness Sanctuary in South Tampa and choose from "Love You" specials such as a $39 Brazilian wax, $39 skin peels and even a $39 Tibetan sound healing.
3. Kiss your gloss goodbye
I've been touting lipstick as the new beauty trend you have to try, and now it seems lipstick may also be the key to his heart. Men are most drawn to a woman's lips over any other facial features, according to researchers at Manchester University in England. The study claims that pink lipstick will hold his attention for 6.7 seconds, while red will keep his eyes on you for 7.3 seconds.
I've come up with my own, completely unscientific, list of the top fivelipsticks to help get, or keep, your guy:
1. Alarm, a fire-engine red, from Maybellin.
2. Ho Ho Ho, a crisp crimson, from Michael Marcus
3. Wild Fire, a bright orangey-red, from Estee Lauder
4. Porn Star, a shocking pink, from Mattese
5. Sekichiku, a shimmering pink, by Sensai
4. Creative cuisine
You don't have to blow the bank to impress your lover this V-day. Head to your local craft store and pick up candy conversation hearts and Wilton's FoodWriter pens to craft your own edible love notes.
You can create custom messages on the back-side of the conversation hearts, and, you can even remove the pre-printed message in the front with a razor blade to create a one-of-a-kind conversation from the heart.
5. No-calorie treats
What would Valentine's Day be without bath and body products that leave you as sweetly scented as a fresh-baked cupcake?
Delizioso Skincare, a boutique brand of organic products, has one of the most deliciously scented Body Washes I've ever encountered in their White Chocolate & Berries Wash, Soap and Cream ($32 for the set at deliziososkincare.com). Other favorites include Sandalwood Body Butter from Mount Romance ($21.95 at mtromanceusa.com), ideal for giving him a massage. And, for you, Temptations Bath n' Body hand-crafted Cherry Vanilla collection, available at esty.com.
You were already perfect, but now you're even love-lier.
— Carolyn Brundage is the founder of tampabay.prettycity.com, a guide to the best in local beauty. Need beauty advice? Tweet Up with Carolyn on Twitter @tampabaypretty.