10 Ways to Be the Best Valentine Ever

With all the hype, Valentine’s Day has the potential to be a big let down for women. Here’s an idea—this year, you play Cupid.

Why set yourself up to be disappointed by a lame box of chocolates or a grocery store bouquet of roses? Set the stage for romance, and you might end up feeling more gratified than you think. Here are 10 ways to be the best Valentine ever for your guy.

1. Show him Appreciation

Men don’t always ask for it, but they long for appreciation as much as we do. Show him you notice all the little things he does for you and your family—the air he puts in your car tires, the snow fort he built with the kids, the cup of coffee he brought you on Sunday morning. A card is nice, but a giving him a wrapped box with slips of paper listing all the things that you adore will really make his heart beat faster—and reinforce his good behavior!

2. Dress Hot

Men are wired to respond to visual stimuli, so today, you be the eye candy. Wear a fitted dress, show a little cleavage or leg, or just go for it with the drool-inducing garter belt/stockings/killer heels combo that no man can resist. What? You say you don’t own anything sexy? Well happy Valentine’s Day to you, girl. Time to go shopping.

3. Create Anticipation

Let your man know throughout the day that you’re a sure thing that night. Send him flowers at the office, text him a picture of your lacy bra or send a flirty e-card. He’ll be excited and happy all day long, and you’ll have fun playing the temptress.

4. Go Non-Verbal

Guys long for intimacy, but they don’t find it in long, confiding talks as much as we do. To get close man-style, make your evening more about doing and less about talking. Listen to music, go dancing, get a couples’ massage or a pedicure—lots of salons will let you bring champagne, and some even have private rooms. Or if you must talk, keep the conversation fresh by asking provocative questions: What are three things you want more of in your life? Then take turns answering. Ban any discussion of work, kids, finances or your house. All that blah-blah-blah can be a libido-killer for you both.

5. Connect Naturally

Instead of spending the evening in a packed restaurant with an inflated prix fixe menu; embrace the elements. Draw a bubble bath, build a crackling fire or bundle up and take a starlit walk through the neighborhood. It will make for a more meaningful, calming way to connect.

6. Make Room for Romance

Get a couple hours alone in a room together without interruption, i.e. get rid of the kids! Book dinner and a movie for them at Aunt Susie’s house, swap babysitting with a friend or hire a sitter and book a sleep-under at a hotel.  Yes, you want to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your kids, but do it over chocolate chip pancakes at breakfast and make grown-up time the priority later on.

7. Let Him Lead

All this attention may inspire your man to make some romantic overtures of his own, which (hooray!) is what you wanted in the first place. If he shows initiative, go with it. Men like to feel competent, and often are bewildered by the process of romance. Relax, graciously accept his gifts, admire his efforts and show him that you trust him. You deserve to be pampered and romanced.

8. Put Yourself in the Mood 

Don’t make a big effort with dinner or presents. Tonight the treat on the menu is you, so do whatever you need to feel delicious. Give yourself lots of time to get ready, dance around to a sexy playlist, and have some goodies like a massage candle, a flattering nightie, and arousal gel handy for when things start getting hot.

9. Blow His Mind

You know that thing that drives him crazy in bed? This is the occasion to make it happen. Whether it’s a new sex toy or position, acting out a fantasy, or doing a strip tease, when you take the initiative to switch things up, you’re giving him what he considers to be the ultimate expression of true love—hot sex! Every man loves that.

10. Make it Work

Incorporating all of these suggestions makes for a pretty ambitious day, even for the best-intentioned Valentine. If pressed for time, just choose two or three things you know will delight your mate. My husband says he’d be more than happy with #2 and #9. Repeated four times.