The changing gifts of love
Forget the red roses this Valentine's Day – give your loved one a sensual present for the bedroom that keeps on giving.
Seventy per cent of Kiwi women admitted they would rather receive a sex toy than a bunch of flowers or chocolates, according to a national Durex survey of about 700 people.
And a whopping 79 per cent of men said they'd rather get a sex toy over a power tool.
Valentine's Day was now the second-busiest time of year for Palmerston North's adult shop D.VICE, with couples buying gifts to ignite their passion, company director Ema Lyon said.
"Often people haven't felt comfortable with giving a sex toy for Christmas and Valentine's Day is a time when a gift is given in private."
The We-Vibe is the most popular toy this year, alongside erotica books, chocolate body paint and warming edible massage oil, Ms Lyon said.
Another off-beat Valentine's Day spend was a tattoo – the significant other's name inked on the derriere.
But make sure you're in for the long haul because tattoos were hard to change, Powerhouse Tattoo Studio owner Steve Nesbit said.
"I did it once. At that stage I thought it was a good idea but my new partner wasn't very impressed at all."
In his 22 years as a tattoo artist, Mr Nesbit had seen a lot of Valentine's Day disasters, particularly with young guys trying to win their girlfriends back.
His advice was to get a tattoo that represented the relationship, rather than a name. That way it wouldn't be awkward if you dropped your pants with another lover, Mr Nesbit said.
For the traditional, flowers are still the go. And while a dozen red roses were glorious, hordes of men these days dared to be different, De Fresno florist Courtney Holloway said.
Pink and white lilies and roses are popular and so are single red roses. Chocolates were sweet, but pick carefully. Back at the Durex survey, 8 per cent of women said the worst Valentine's present they had ever opened was a cheap box of chocolates.
And above all, men should refrain from giving home appliances.