Valentine’s day, despite being a holiday men and women celebrate together, has always had a distinctly feminine bent. The iconography of the holiday–the heart-shaped box of chocolate, the pink and red color scheme, the roses– are all things American culture calls girly stuff.
Nothing wrong, of course, with a guy who’s into pink hearts and roses. But maybe you’ve got a man who might not appreciate the quiet beauty of a blushing flower in bloom, or animatronic teddy bear holding a heart that says “I Wuv You”. For you, here’s a list of romantic gifts with all the manliness of a group of mustaches drinking scotch at their weekly poker game.
Thin, simple, and handsome, this rosewood wallet from Idaho’s Slim Timber is perfect for holding business cards or plastic. Each wallet is individual, as the grain of each piece of wood is unique. The wallet is bound with elastic straps and carved thumb grooves for easy removal. SlimTimber also carries watches and wallets of varying thickness and material, as well as wooden bowties(!).
This super and heroic design comes from the mind of Californian Kevin Coss. Kevin has a shop full of quirky yet sophisticated tie clips (also known as tie bars)–notably a lightning bolt, guitar neck, and a katana. If you’re looking for more traditional designs, he’s got that too. The tie clips are made of hand-finished aluminum and come in a velvet drawstring pouch. Check out the rest of his store here.
Don’t let Queen Bee Trading Co.‘s name fool you–the shop has over 80 different listings for men’s shaving products. The North Carolina store describes this “sweet and sexy” scented shaving cream as “smooth southern whiskey blended with vanilla, raw sugar, and a very light musk.” The cream is also full of skin-soothing and moisturizing goodness, like aloe vera and lactylates.
If money clips are more your guy’s style, check out Atlanta retailer Block and Hammer. The clips come personalized with intials of your choice. The metal is a sturdy 18″ gauge solid aluminum. The lettering is stamped and finished by hands, making every clip unique. The shop also carries a variety of other useful customized menswear, including collar stays and cuff links.
Elegant and simple, the Arbor watch from is where the rustic meets modern. The Arbor is handmade from high-quality rosewood, with triangle brushed steel markings in place of numbers. The strap is brown calfskin leather. The SLC company TmbrWood makes other wooden watches if maple or sandalwood suits you better. Their lumber pile also includes cell phone cases and sunglasses–check it out here.
What sold me on this soap was Blu Bayou’s Soap Company‘s description of the scent: “like a deep and musky black suede leather jacket”. Can’t get much manlier than a black leather jacket. The Florida-based Blu Bayou makes vegan soaps from all natural and organic oils that lather easily into luxurious, thick bubbles and cream. Yum.