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Tired of the Valentine’s spam?

14th February is just around the corner and whether you’re single or coupled with a romance Scrooge, there’s no reason not to give yourself some affection…

By Jo Dunbar

We’re a week away from 14 February and already our inboxes are groaning with the obligatory emails urging us to book a restaurant, buy some new undies or plan an epic – and expensive – weekend break.

It’s 2020 and we don’t need a reason to pamper ourselves, dine out or buy anyone a gift. It’s irrelevant whether you think St Valentine’s Day is simply a marketing ploy, or actually, would quite like a bouquet of roses – the fact is, you don’t need to wait on anyone else to inject some romance or love into your life.

You might have a partner who rolls their eyes at the vaguest mention of Valentine’s Day. But if you’re a romantic then don’t let that attitude spoil your fun! Use the love celebration theme to enjoy a moment by yourself. Whether that’s finally using those gift vouchers which have been in your purse for months or getting round to booking that beauty treatment you always say you never have time for.

All too often Valentine’s Day treats are billed as something expensive. Taking time for yourself is a cost-free exercise, whether you finally sit down with a coffee and the book you have been attempting to read; paint your nails or binge on some guilty pleasure telly – the whole point is doing something that feels good for you.

Just take time for yourself 

Yes, we know it’s terribly romantic to stroll along the beach with your partner (while, quite possibly, having a row!) Instead of a date that could turn into domestic, why not get outside on your own?

Go to the exhibition you’ve been meaning to visit 

We love the look of The Enchanted Interior at Newcastle’s Laing Art Gallery which explores the sinister implications of a popular theme in nineteenth-century painting: the depiction of the interior as a ‘gilded cage’ in which women are pictured as ornamental objects. Iconic Pre-Raphaelite paintings by artists such as Edward Burne-Jones and William Holman Hunt are shown alongside works by their female peers such as Emma Sandys and Evelyn De Morgan, who challenge and subvert the idealisation of women as captive damsels or passive beauties.

www.laingartgallery.org.uk

Go to the coast and take in the views for yourself

Wrap up and enjoy blowing away the cobwebs on your own. Don’t forget to check out our guide on the best Northumberland walks for inspiration.

Lock the bathroom door and enjoy a long soak 

If a solo day date feels a bit awkward, rope in a friend you want to catch up with. Book a brunch, or have a drink – don’t hide from the set menus and red roses!

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