Planet-Friendly Gifts with a Difference


Make Valentine’s Day 2022 unforgettable by using the latest technology to design your perfect date and give your significant other a gift that’s both romantic and lasting.

Great gifts for the tech lover in your life

Smartphone photo printer

While having a high-performance smartphone camera in your pocket means never missing a special moment, it also means that most of those precious memories are only saved digitally.

With a portable pocket or purse printer, such as the Canon SELPHY SQUARE QX10 at £150 or the Polaroid Hi-Print at around £74you can share instant physical copies of your best smartphone photos, creating perfect keepsakes to slip into your wallet, stick on the fridge, or brighten up your desk at work.

Because they use photo-size sheets or stickers, there’s also less paper wasted.

Lego flowers

Flowers are a staple of Valentine’s Day. But colorful flowers such as red roses don’t bloom often in the UK in February, making the environmental impact of buying a bouquet even more damaging at this time of year. Instead, you can opt for a more durable version of the traditional bouquet.

Credits: LEGO

Lego Botanical collection includes a 15-stem flower bouquet including plastic roses, poppies and daisies and costs £45 from Lego’s online store.

Have it ready to present to your Valentine or give him the box and have fun building the bouquet together.

Pacsafe technical bag

Made from recycled nylon, the Pacsafe Econyl Tech Anti-theft compact shoulder bag has zippered pockets to keep all your tech safe.

Ideal for travelling, whether long-distance or just for work, it’s more useful than romantic. It’s lightweight and comes with a shoulder strap reinforced with steel wire, so it should thwart thieves trying to steal your kit by cutting it off you.

It is currently priced at only £36 on Amazon.

Lovebox for lovers

Aimed primarily at people in long-distance relationships, the Lovebox for lovers is a cute connected messaging box with a heart on the front that spins when it receives photos, notes, stickers and drawings which the owner can then view on the LCD screen inside the device by drink.

Messages are sent using the Lovebox app (free: iOS/Android), but it’s probably a gift that works best if both partners have one. So while a Lovebox for Lovers costs £112.99, you might think it’s worth teaming up with your significant other to get the full effect by buying two at £205.98.

Apps to help you plan the perfect date for Valentine’s Day

OpenTable (Free: iOS/Android)

Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest nights of the year for restaurateurs (or at least it was before the pandemic). Finding a delicious restaurant for your Valentine’s meal is simple when you use open table – even if you left it at the last minute.

Simply enter the date and time you want to eat, then refine your search using filters such as cuisine and location. Once you’ve found a place you like, you can browse the menu, check out the decor, read reviews, and reserve a table through the app. If you change your mind, remember to cancel your reservation so another couple — and the restaurant — don’t lose out.

If you still need inspiration, the OpenTable app currently has a few carousels on its homepage highlighting romantic restaurants.

Yum (Free: iOS/Android)

If you plan to stay home and cook a special meal for Valentine’s Day this year, Delicious is a great place to research recipe ideas based on your favorite cuisines and allergy requirements as well as ingredients you want to avoid.

Food ingredients on a table

Credits: Yum

You can also search by keyword; “romantic” displays a list of recipes for everything from beef Wellington to chocolate pie, while “sustainable” leads you to recipes for smoothies and seafood dishes. There are even drink ideas like sparkling dewy sangria.

Eventbrite (Free: iOS/Android)

Valentine’s Day falls on a Monday this year, so many pre-planned Valentine’s Day events take place the weekend before. But when and how you want to celebrate, Eventbrite makes it easy to navigate and book local experiences.

If you’re in London, for example, you can choose from a variety of events ranging from a Valentine’s Day ball to a cake decorating workshop. In the Manchester area, options include a 10-course vegan tasting menu and a Vivaldi candlelight concert at Manchester Cathedral.

Between (Free: iOS/Android)

If your goal is to keep the love going well beyond Valentine’s Day, one way to make your intentions known is to invite your partner to join the couples app Included between. This can be used on Windows and Mac computers as well as smartphones.

Once you both sign up, the app is designed to be used as a private space to send intimate messages, store photos, make voice calls, and avoid unnecessary arguments by sharing your calendars and tracking dates important ones such as your birthdays.

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