Experts aren’t sure why people are more likely to have a heart attack during the winter than any other time of year. If Valentine’s Day and Heart Health Month are inspiring you to take better care of your ticker, here’s big news.
A 12-month human clinical study involving 577 participants conducted in Malaysia reveals we aren’t doing our hearts any favors by eating a high-carb diet. Researchers looked at different patterns of eating, from high-fat to low-fat, high-carb to low-carb, and measured the effect each way of eating had on the risk for heart disease. Turns out, fat intake didn’t move the risk needle one way or the other. The higher carb diets, on the other hand, were associated with greater cardiovascular ris.
I wasn’t the least surprised by this study’s findings! I’ve been saying for years that fat has been wrongly demonized. If anything, it’s sugar – not fat – that’s causing us to go off the metabolic rails. In this study, low-carb diets performed considerably better than high-carb diets.
The study found that healthy adults who ate higher proportions of carbohydrates (compared with the amount of proteins or fat they consumed) tended to develop several elevated risk factors for cardiovascular disease including high blood pressure and more plaque-promoting small LDL cholesterol particles. Higher proportions of dietary fat intake were not associated with elevating these risk factors.
A hormone called insulin – and a condition called insulin resistance – are at the core of pre-diabetes, and are turning out to be early warning signs for heart disease. And the results of this study showed that insulin measures were considerably better when people ate diets with a lower amount of carbs, and that was true regardless of the amount of fat consumed.
It’s insulin resistance, not cholesterol, that is the root cause of heart disease and, according to other research, probably many other chronic underlying conditions plaguing our world.
The good news is that insulin resistance is treatable, preventable and mostly reversible by diet alone. It’s time we get off the toxic diets that are causing this condition in the first place! It’s time we understand that saturated fat and cholesterol are not the problems. When you remove that outdated thinking, the current dietary guidelines collapse like a house of cards.
What’s good for the heart is good for the brain, and vice versa. I haven’t found one exception to that case. The right diet for the heart looks exactly like the right diet for the brain. And sadly, the diet we SHOULD be eating is exactly the opposite of the diet we’ve been told is heart-healthy.
Easy, no-fail heart-healthy eating changes
Most attempts to eat healthier fail quickly because the changes are too big and unmanageable. Instead of trying to completely overhaul your diet, start by making a few small changes. Here are a few simple suggestions that may have a healthy impact on your heart:
First, remove these items from your kitchen:
Corn oil and canola oil. These seed oils are filled with omega-6 which is very pro-inflammatory.
Sugar. Let’s be realistic. I know you’re probably not going to give up your favorite sweets entirely. But be kind to your heart by restricting those goodies to just a few days a month.
Canned soups, salad dressings and pasta sauces. These are often loaded with hidden sugars and a ton of sodium. Instead of relying on these cooking shortcuts, do an internet search for simple recipes you can make from scratch.
White flour and white rice. These are heavily processed and raise your blood sugar almost as much as pure sugar. And – don’t shoot the messenger – products made with ‘whole grains” don’t do much better. Whole grains still raise blood sugar, and still contain gluten, so they may not be the solution for everyone.
Then, add these items to your fridge and pantry:
Palm oil. You can find this online and in specialty markets. Millions of people around the world use it as their everyday cooking oil. Malaysian certified sustainable palm oil is rich in nutrients such as brain- and heart-healthy vitamin E tocotrienols.
Butter. This was never bad to begin with! It was banished from our tables because of our ill-advised fear of saturated fats. So we replaced it with something much worse!
Stevia and monk fruit. These are natural sweeteners that have no effect on your blood sugar.”
Nuts: People who eat more nuts have lower BMIs. Their diets are higher in magnesium, higher in fiber, higher in poly- and monounsaturated fats, all of which can have a profound effect on your health. But nuts are also easy to overeat and contribute to weight gain, so just be careful about the amount you consume.
Egg yolks: What a relief that you don’t have to suffer through one more tasteless egg white omelet! The advice to eat egg white omelets is way past its expiration date!
Dark chocolate (minimum 60% cocoa on the label): Chocolate contains cocoa flavanols; beneficial plant-based phytonutrients that support cardiovascular health.
Grass-fed beef. Grass-fed beef contains anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids and less inflammatory omega-6s. It’s also free of hormones, a very big plus indeed. If you follow this suggestion, you’ll never have to worry about how much marbling is in your steak, or if your hamburger is 70/30 instead of 90/10 or 80/20. It won’t matter.
Dark meat poultry: The USDA data shows that there are mere milligrams of differences in the nutritional content of white and dark meat.
Here’s more advice: Stick with the basics. I’ve always said that the only rule you really need to follow in nutrition is to eat real food, food your great-grandmother would have recognized as food. Eat from what I call the “Jonny Bowden Four Food Groups”: food you could hunt, fish, gather or pluck. Stay away from overly processed and get back to basics.
That doesn’t mean you can never snack. Get organic (non-GMO) popcorn with minimal chemical processing. Get away from that chemical soup called “butter flavoring” and look for a microwave popcorn that contains palm oil, because palm oil doesn’t burn easily so your popcorn will taste better.
This year, you can finally make commitments to a heart-healthy diet that are easy to achieve. These tips will help you take better care of your heart throughout the winter and may become heart-healthy habits you’ll want to follow all year long.
Biography: Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS
Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS, (aka “The Nutrition Myth Buster”) is a nationally known expert on weight loss, nutrition and health, and the best-selling author of 15 books on health. Dr. Jonny — a former professional pianist and conductor — earned six certifications in personal training and fitness, has a Master’s degree in psychology, a PhD in holistic nutrition and is board certified by the American College of Nutrition. He has written, contributed to or consulted on hundreds of articles in publications as diverse as the New York Times, People, Us, O the Oprah Magazine, In Style, Vanity Fair Online, People, GQ, Forbes Online, Clean Eating, the Huffington Post and countless others.
He is the best-selling author of 15 books, including “Living Low Carb”, “The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth” and his latest, the revised and expanded version of “The Great Cholesterol Myth” (2020).
Valentine’s Day is always a day full of romance, love and of course, alcohol. 360 Magazine has curated a list of the most divine drinks for this season of intimacy. Making these drinks for a loved one is a sure way to show your adoration.
D’USSE Between the Sheets
1 ½ parts D’USSE VSOP Cognac
1 part Bacardi Superior Rum
1 part Orange Curacao
½ part fresh lemon juice
Garnish: Lemon Twist
Method: Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake until chilled. Strain into a chilled coupe glass
Sandra Guibord’s Wine Picks
Sandra Guibord, Founder of Sandra’s Wine Life, has affordable and approachable wine recommendations for you to consider this Valentine’s (or Galentine’s) Day.
Sandra’s Top Bottle Recommendations for this Day of Love:
Made by combining two of the company’s most popular beers – Space Dust IPA and Superfuzz Pale Ale – Fuzzduster is the love child of the two, boasting bright and bitter notes that complement one another nicely and bring out each other’s best qualities.
Fuzzduster can be whipped up in a matter of seconds and is the perfect concoction to create with your significant other (or by yourself, more power to you!) before sitting down for Valentine’s Day festivities at home. All you have to do is combine half a glass of Space Dust and half a glass of Superfuzz with one another, sip and enjoy!
Elysian is also hosting a sweepstake throughout the month of February, where one lucky winner will win a $2,000 Airbnb gift card – to enter, just text “FUZZDUSTER” to 78896 between 2/1 and 2/28.
Cavit Collection Wines
Cavit Sweet Red: A new, lusciously sweet red wine cultivated in vineyards in Vallagrina and Veneto with pronounced cherry and raspberry notes. This delectable beverage pairs well with red meat dishes and are excellent with spicy foods, along with grilled meats and vegetables. The wine has an ABV of 10.5% and is available in 750ml and 1.5l.
Cavit Rosé: It’s never too early for Rose season…especially during a global pandemic. Cavit’s Rosé features beautiful aromas of fresh strawberry and cherries and comes from a blend of native Trentino red grapes. The wine is best served with fish dishes and white meat.
CavitMoscato: This sweet wine features delicious notes of apricot, white peach and sage, a true Italian gem. Cavit’s Moscato is best served with flavorful appetizers, cheeses, spicy dishes, and fruit and chocolate. The wine has an ABV of 7.5% and is available in 750ml and 1.5l.
1.Cannot Meet Because of COVID: The hallmark of a catfish scammer is to come up with excuses of why they cannot meet, such as pretending to be in the military overseas. The pandemic gives them a built-in excuse not to meet. Be careful.
2.Will Not Video Chat: The oldest excuse in the book… they cannot video chat with you because their video camera is supposedly “broken”, or they do not have the best access to Wi-Fi. These are red flags.
3.They Ask You for Money: Once they form an emotional connection with lonely victims, they ask for money. During COVID-19, scammers have begun saying they are sick and need help with treatment, or are low on food, water, and other supplies.
4.Poor Grammar: If the person claims to be American but has terrible grammar, they may be a scammer.
5.Confesses Love Quickly: If you are stuck in your house with limited contact with your loved ones, then someone else’s sweet words can win you over. Scammers know that the sooner they win your trust, the sooner they can drain your bank account. Beware of someone who is moving too fast.
5 Ways to Avoid Becoming a Victim:
1.Never Give Money: Do not give anyone you meet online money, no matter the reason.
2.Meet or Video Chat: Do not form a relationship with someone who will not video chat with you or meet you in person.
3.Do Not Give Personal Information: Scammers can use basic information to commit identity fraud, get access to your banks and steal your money.
4.Conduct Thorough Background Checks: Do not take someone’s word for it. Use reverse look-up sites to verify information, images, email addresses, phone numbers and online profiles.
5.Take Things Slow: If you like someone online, do not let them rush you. Nigerian romance scammers will be pushy about falling in love right away. If that is the case, know something is not right.
How Sandra Guibord Pivoted to Success During the Pandemic& Sandra’s Wine Life’s Valentine’s Day Wine Recommendations
What was your career like pre-pandemic?
For the past 20 years, I have been a wine educator as CEO & Founder of Sandra’s Wine Life. The in-person education aspect of my business involved leading wine seminars for large corporates, entertaining large groups of high-net-worth clientele for private banks, accounting firms, technology firms, and non-profits.
What changed about your business when the pandemic hit?
In Spring, 2020 when all my in-person presentations were canceled, I knew I had to transition to virtual events. All of my corporate clients now needed an intimate connection platform with which to reach their customers. I create Sandra’s Wine Life’s Virtual Wine Seminars to entertain small groups of advisers and their select clients.
What inspired you to make this change rather than just take a few months off?
On a Zoom call with my ski friends, we were commiserating over cocktails about our beloved ski season being cut short from the pandemic. Zoom was new to me, but it was such an easy platform to use and I realized how easy it could be to connect with people all over the world. Right away I knew that it was the path I needed to take to jumpstart my company.
How is business going?
The wine seminars have been an extreme success. I am conducting presentations at least three nights a week all year long – and I’ve had some re-bookings already from clients I just gave seminars for in September as their clients have been very responsive. Seeing the great excitement generated from these seminars is incredibly rewarding.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I started leading my organization” and why? Please share a story or example for each.
My service is more valuable than I realize.
When I started Sandra’s Wine Life, I viewed my service as simply entertainment. I have grown to realize that my services are quite valuable as a business generation tool for my clients, particularly in these pandemic times. My virtual seminars are an opportunity for agents to reach out and effectively connect to their clients. I create an environment that is relaxed and enjoyable to set the mood and facilitate open conversation. This might seem a small thing, but as there is so much to be distracted by about in these times, having the ability to keep people upbeat and in the moment right now is a skill that has proved very valuable, and it’s also very enjoyable for me to be able to provide.
People are not always nice.
Unfortunately, I have seen behavior at wine conferences and other industry events that can be reminiscent of a high school cafeteria. As an attractive woman who is friendly and approachable, people will make assumptions that I don’t take my business seriously and that I’m not as committed to my craft or qualified. I ignore their behavior and simply do what I do to move my business and initiatives forward. In my accomplishments, I prove them wrong.
Don’t be shy about developing your network.
If you never ask or reach out to those in your network, you could be missing out on enormous opportunities. For example, Thomas Preti Catering has separately been providing food to match my wine pairings to some of my clients for as long as 10 years. Just a few months ago I first approached him with an idea about the two of us teaming up to provide food and wine pairings together for exciting virtual events such as Wine & Opera with International Opera Performers, Wine & Cinema tastings. Immediately he was on board. Now I kick myself for being shy about reaching out years ago!
Your perspective and brand tone can change dramatically as your life changes. Lean into it.
When I first started Sandra’s Wine Life, I was a single woman in New York City, and as such I focused on the demographic that I was a part of. As life evolved, adding children, increased obligations and more Corporate services, the focus of my company also evolved to incorporate my perspective on how wine fits into life and its moods and situations, broadened to home entertainment, business dinners, family holidays, International travel and large-scale corporate entertaining.
Be patient and stay the course.
Over the last 20 years, I have had to go to great lengths to keep my business alive. I have had to be creative, carve out time that didn’t exist, continue selling my services, collaborate with others, and learn a number of new skills on the fly — and with great enthusiasm! I did this all while raising children, dedicating myself to growing my former husband’s business and without having any encouragement or support. My business was always my voice and I needed to keep it alive and growing slowly so when the time came that I could fly. The time finally came, and when it did, I was truly ready. Now I’m flying and loving every minute!
It’s almost Valentine’s Day – and Galentine’s Day. How should our readers celebrate?
Impress your date with romantic chocolates alongside Champagne.
Treat your best girlfriends to pizza and Pinot Noir.
Send Mom a bottle of her favorite Chardonnay.
Cook a romantic spicy seafood pasta dinner for two with a luxurious Brunello.
For that “new” special person in your life, a picnic with Prosecco and cheese is friendly and thoughtful – and pandemic friendly.
If you’re in a restaurant and in doubt, White Burgundy or Pinot Noir are great food-friendly choices that are smart to order.
What are your top wines for celebrating Valentine’s Day this year?
I will be sharing plenty of wine tips similar to these and much more in my forthcoming book, titled ‘Wine Identity’, due out this Spring. Look for more news on this shortly! In the meantime, you can check out my Instagram at @sandraswinelife each Wednesday at 6 p.m. ET for my weekly #WineWednesday recommendations, where I’ll share details about my favorite wines of the week and practical tips on how to enjoy them.
Survey shows percentage of those suffering Valentine let-downs, finds women caught cheating more often than men, and more.
The leading online resource for health, auto, home and life insurance for more than 20 years, Insurance, recently surveyed 2,000 individuals to determine how frequently Valentine’s Day disasters occur. The good news: most (83%) report escaping relationship drama around the holiday. But, for those who endure heartache, finding highlights include:
27% broke up with someone
20% had a serious argument
65% of men caught partner cheating (vs. 35% of women discovering an unfaithful partner)
52% of men initiate break ups (vs. 48% of women calling it quits)
“It’s understandable that insurance may not be top of mind when going through a stressful break up or divorce,” acknowledges Michelle Megna, editorial director for Insurance. “But failing to assess life, homeowners, auto and home insurance can be costly. Our guide makes it easy for people to understand where they may be exposed to financial risks so they can efficiently make any necessary insurance coverage changes.”
Insurance checklist during divorce
Life insurance: Consider changing the beneficiary or setting up a life insurance trust for the benefit of any children.
Home insurance: Ensure the correct name is on the policy and/or secure renters insurance if moving out of a shared home. The guide explains what to do if homeowners are underwater on their mortgage and/or leaving a home unoccupied.
Auto insurance: It is possible to stay on the same auto insurance policy until car ownership is determined. But, assess your estranged spouse’s driving habits, speeding tickets and/or accidents. It may be more cost-effective to separate your auto coverage before finalizing a divorce.
Health insurance: If an individual wants to remain on a former spouse’s health plan after divorce, it may be possible to obtain COBRA coverage for up to 36 months. COBRA is generally a high-cost option and it may be more cost effective to purchase an individual high-deductible health plan.
The report includes an interactive map showing divorce and marriage rates by state, along with their differences from national averages.
Megna is available to elaborate on break up survey findings and answer questions about how people can best assess any insurance coverage changes that may be important in the wake of divorce.
Insurance is owned and operated by QuinStreet, Inc. (Nasdaq: QNST), a leader in providing performance marketplace technologies and services to the financial services and home services industries. QuinStreet is a pioneer in delivering online marketplace solutions to match searchers with brands in digital media. The company is committed to providing consumers with the information and tools they need to research, find and select the products and brands that meet their needs. Insurance.com is a member of the company’s expert research and publishing division.
Insurance.com is a trusted online resource dedicated to educating consumers on auto, home, health and life insurance, developing relationships directly with carriers to offer consumers comparison rates from multiple companies. Since 2001, Insurance.com’s industry-first online tools, data-based reporting and experienced experts have helped consumers make informed insurance-related decisions, so they can choose the right insurance for their individual needs.
The movie experts at Redbox have just released some interesting movie insights, just in time for Valentine’s Day. They asked movie watchers what their favorite romantic comedies are from the 1990s and 2000s. Redbox is also running a campaign where they are promoting the most romantic films for Valentine’s Day. Check out their list below which features movies for all of your romance movie needs.
Which is your favorite romantic comedy from the 2000s?
Love is in the air, gals… Valentine’s Day is almost here! If you’re new to owning an online boutique and this is the first Valentine’s Day you’ll be celebrating as a small business owner, the approach of February 14th might have you mainly thinking about what you’ll get for your significant other and (maybe even more so) what he or she will get for you. Or maybe you typically spend Valentine’s Day with your best single gal pals, eating chocolate and exchanging gifts.
But Valentine’s Day isn’t all about love, romance, and cheesy cards. No matter how big or small your eCommerce business is, it can be a day that drives sales like no other – especially if you sell clothing, jewelry, or other gifts. In fact, it rivals only Christmas in consumer spending. If you play your cards right, the days surrounding Valentine’s Day could make up one of your best sales weeks of all time.
Of course, competing with major retailers isn’t easy, least of all on Valentine’s Day. Stores all over the country are spending thousands of dollars on Valentine’s marketing, trying to get people to buy their gifts from them. Sure, you could have an incredible selection of Valentine’s gifts and accessories, available for great prices – but if nobody knows about your shop, it won’t do you any good in the end.
If you’re going to drive both new and existing customers to your shop for their Valentine’s shopping, you’ve got to get creative about your Valentine’s Day marketing. Read on to learn 15 affordable Valentine’s Day marketing ideas for your boutique – and why you really should care to do something special for this holiday in the first place.
Valentine’s Day and eCommerce
The numbers are clear – Americans spend a whole lot of dough on Valentine’s Day. The average American celebrating Valentine’s Day spent $196.31 on Valentine’s Day in 2020, adding up to a total of $27.4 billion spent on the holiday in 2020. Trends show that number only heading upwards – 2020 spending was up 32% from 2019.
32% buy Valentine’s Day gifts from discount stores.
Men spend nearly three times as much as women on Valentine’s Day.
$5.8B was spent on Valentine’s Day jewelry
$4.3B was spent on a Valentine’s Day night out
$2.4B was spent on Valentine’s Day chocolate
$2.3B was spent on flowers
$2B was spent on Valentine’s Day gift cards
$1.3B was spent on Valentine’s Day greeting cards
45% of adults didn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day
15% of Americans buy themselves a present on Valentine’s Day
Americans spend an average of $12.21 on Valentine’s Day gifts for their pets
With all of that shopping and spending going on during the Valentine’s Day season, you’ll want to make sure your business ends up with even a small sliver of that massive pie. Running holiday-themed campaigns and upping your marketing efforts leading up to Valentine’s Day will help you keep your boutique fresh in people’s minds and increase the chances that they go straight to you once it’s time to shop for their Valentine’s Day gifts.
15 Valentine’s Day Marketing Ideas for Small Businesses
Don’t have a huge marketing budget? No problem – with time, effort, and the right direction, you can still get your boutique’s awesome Valentine’s Day gifts and products in front of the right people. Here are 15 Valentine’s Day marketing ideas for small businesses that you can implement for little or no money.
Send a themed email marketing campaign
Instead of generic email newsletters or sale messages, send a themed Valentine’s Day email that’s all about love, friendship, and gift-giving. Drive your audience to your website with gift suggestions and fun Valentine’s-themed wordplay. (You know… “love is in the air,” “we will always love you,” “gifts with heart,” etc!) For more tips on how to use email marketing to grow your boutique, click here.
Host a contest
Embrace the holiday and host a fun couples contest or giveaway on your boutique’s social media page. Don’t be afraid to get creative! Have participants recreate a photo, do a challenge, coordinate an outfit together using a piece from your shop – whatever sounds like a good time. Then, have your audience vote for their favorite entrant on Valentine’s Day. (No need to exclude single people from this one – you could welcome entries from couples, BFFs, family members, etc.)
Run “couples” deals
How do you make a BOGO deal more festive? Call it a couples deal, or a two for one deal! Choose a selection of Valentine’s Day items that you’ll put on sale, whether it’s chocolates, earrings, or pink scrunchies. Encourage them to gift the extra item to their significant other, give one to their BFF for Galentine’s Day, or just keep it for themselves as a token of your love for them!
Partner with another small business
Community over competition, right ladies? Partner with a local business and share the love. It could be another online boutique or a local business that doesn’t directly compete with yours but has a similar clientele, like a florist or a nail salon. Offer a combined Valentine’s Day gift package of your products/services and theirs. This is an especially great idea if you have a strong local presence (or if you’re interested in making it stronger!)
Celebrate Galentine’s Day
Don’t sleep on Galentine’s Day! Coined by Leslie Knope from the TV show Parks and Recreation, Galentine’s Day is a day reserved for celebrating female friendships. It takes place the day before Valentine’s Day, February 13th. To celebrate, bundle a few of your most popular items offer curated gift packages that’d be perfect to gift to a best friend. You could also offer a discount when they multiple of the same item to gift to their friends.
Have a V-Day themed photoshoot
Create some fun Valentine’s Day photos to post on your social media accounts leading up to the big day. You could take photos of couples wearing your clothing, flat lays of all of the red and pink items you carry, or outfit inspo photos against a red or a pink backdrop.
Create a Valentine’s Day gift guide
You and I both know how hard it can be to shop for people – especially your significant other. Make the whole V-day shopping experience a little less stressful by putting together a list of gift ideas and sharing it on your company blog.
No need to have every single item come from just your shop – in fact, it might be more helpful and comprehensive if you scour other local or small boutiques as well and feature their products in your guide. (It’s a great way to open the door to new networking relationships, too!) If you’re feeling up to it, you could create multiple gift guides with different people in mind – for her, for him, for mom, for Galentine’s Day, for your pet, etc.
Send a card
Everyone loves getting mail! Send your past and present customers a real-life Valentine via snail mail. No need to be salesy – the point of this is to show your customers how much you appreciate them and that you’re even thinking about them on the day dedicated to love. Include a coupon to be used in-store or a unique promo code to thank them for showing you and your store love throughout the years.
Share the love
Turn your social media into even more of a community. Invite your audience to share their love stories with you, whether through DMs or by using a certain hashtag in their posts. You can make this as sappy or spicy as you want to – feel free to mix things up a bit by also asking people to send you their worst or funniest dating stories as well! Once you’ve compiled submissions, feature your favorites in your stories. It’ll keep the rest of your audience engaged and help participants feel even more involved in your brand.
Show the love locally
Valentine’s Day is all about sharing the love. What better way to do that than by giving back to the people who need it most? Celebrate Valentine’s Day by hosting a service project, donating products from your store to a local organization, or pledging to donate a certain percentage of your profits in the weeks surrounding Valentine’s Day.
Make sure to advertise this throughout your social channels and your website so your customers know how much good their purchases are doing. Not only will you be able to make a real difference in your community, but you’ll also be able to involve your customers in your charity work.
Highlight date night outfits
People don’t just spend money on gifts during the Valentine’s Day season. They also spend money on themselves, buying clothing, lingerie, date night jewelry, and more. Put together a few fabulous Valentine’s Day outfits using products from your boutique and share a few outfit inspo photos on social media. Be sure to group those products together on your website so your customers can easily purchase everything they need to recreate the outfit.
Don’t alienate single people
For people who aren’t currently in a relationship, Valentine’s Day feels a whole lot more like Singles Awareness Day. Why not go out of your way to show them a little love, too? Don’t leave single people out of all the Valentine’s Day fun – consider running some sort of promo just for them. Run a sale on self-care items that make treat yo’ self gifts, like bath bombs, jade rollers, and (of course) chocolate. You could do this in conjunction with your regular Valentine’s Day promotions or the week before.
Be clear about shipping deadlines
Some people plan ahead of every holiday and finish their gift-shopping weeks in advance – but most people tend to be last-minute Valentine’s Day shoppers. Of course, placing a last-minute order from your online boutique on February 13th probably isn’t going to work out for them. Add a banner to your site reminding shoppers of the Valentine’s Day delivery deadline. Be clear and realistic about shipping cutoffs to receive items by Valentine’s Day. Encourage people to buy early, especially with COVID-related shipping delays making package deliveries even more unreliable than usual.
Make a Valentine’s Day video
When it comes to commanding your audience’s attention, video is one of the very most effective marketing tools out there. Rather than just snapping a few photos of your new Valentine’s Day products, create a video showcasing your favorite Valentine’s Day outfits or gift ideas. You could create a short-form vertical video using IG reels or TikTok, or share a longer informative video on YouTube, Facebook, or IGTV.
Host a Giveaway
Spread the love with an exciting giveaway. Partner with other small businesses in your community or your niche to give something away. It could be a romantic couple’s getaway with flowers, a hotel stay, and a new outfit, a date-night-in package with a dress, a romantic candle, chocolates, and a voucher for fancy takeout, or an epic Valentine’s Day shopping spree. Just make sure it’s somewhat Valentine’s Day related, whether with what you’re giving away, how you enter, or even just with the images and language you use to introduce it.
While implementing these Valentine’s Day marketing ideas might take some serious thought and strategizing, with a little effort they can pay off in a big way.
Out of loss and adversity emerges an uplifting global project and festival, led by Erez Safar (who produces under the name h2the), in honor of his late mother, “Frida Levona bat Shalom”.
“I lost my mom to cancer two months ago,” Safar shared, “and the pain was so intense, I knew I had to do something with it. My mom had an incredible light inside her and navigated the world with hope and positivity. I realized the best way to honor her memory would be to turn that pain and darkness I was feeling into a light that I could share with others. So I put together this project called ‘Don’t Block Your Blessings’ (DBYB), and I hope it can become a space for people to share wisdom for leading better, happier lives.”
Safar comes off as warm, playful, and relaxed as he speaks with me over video chat, from his LA apartment. He tells me he looks at the DBYB platform as a form of “Cheat Codes To Happiness,” where people can trade stories as they navigate the ups and downs of life, and share how they have been able to bring more blessings into their lives via perspective, faith and gratitude. In addition to live-stream festivals (the next of which will take place this month), the project also lives on the site here, as well as an active discussion and healing space on the new and wildly popular mobile app, Clubhouse.
Don’t Block Your Blessings (DBYB) first launched two months ago, with a one of a kind live-stream festival by the same name, featuring musicians, artists, and some of the most innovative minds in self-growth and healing. The DBYB Festival is hosted on an exclusive virtual platform, which boasts three interactive rooms and allows festival-goers to easily move from room to room, as then explore various talks, musical performances, and the creation of visual art, live in real-time.
This is not the first time Safar has wowed with his creative approach to online events. His first live-stream festival, Lo-Freq Fest, was featured in Billboard and shared around the globe. The debut DBYB festival featured over 40+ world-wide presenters with 25,774 viewers.
The next festival will be free to attend virtually and is set to take place on Valentine’s (Sunday, February 14th), between 6-9 pm PST.
The festival will feature contemporary artists, musicians, and teachers in the fields of self-growth and healing. Presenters include:
The founder of Bestseller in a Weekend, Dunams has helped more than 1500 leaders write books. She is also a leadership trainer, executive coach and certified peacemaker. She will be presenting in the healing room “The Slippery Slope vs. The Conscious Climb – Managing Our Unconscious Bias.”
Dr. Aparajita (AJ)
A social psychologist, a diversity and inclusion consultant, a certified life and executive coach, an author, a speaker, an immigrant, and a two-time traumatic brain injury survivor. She will be presenting in the healing room “Making Your Invisible Visible for Happiness.”
The Boom Bap Kids
Purveyors of funk and hip hop, founders Woes Martin, Silent John, and Mike Steel will be bringing their fabric puppetry and beats to the festival.
Founders Benjy and Heather Wertheimer have been leading kirtan (sacred chanting) worldwide since 2001. They are known for their special gift of bringing audiences into a vast and loving experience through their unique blend of exquisite voices accompanied by instruments of India and the west. In 2020 alone, their music has garnered over 14 million streams.
The face of Clubhouse and the host of its #CottonClub, Bomani X is an artist in every sense of the word, a guitarist, singer songwriter, and a celebrity digital strategist who has worked with Jill Scott, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Wyclef, and more.
A lifelong passionate artist and designer. Native to Harlem-New York City, Hill now exhibits and paints live, showcasing her nine-year figurative subject matter: “A Woman’s perspective.” In conjunction with her exhibitions, she directs an international art education foundation, “Art Education with B. Hill”, which brings art curriculum to underserved schools and communities. She will be joining the festival’s Live Art room.
See below for the full list of presenters at the multi-room DBYB festival:
Ada Pasternak, Adam Cola, Caitlin Jemma, Deborah Stokol, DJ Beatific, Drew Angus, Eko Zu, Eli Lev, Gattison, Gentleman Brawlers, Gerle, h2the, Kevin Daniel, Kindred Melodies, Kirsten Collins, Klezmer Juice, Latch Key Kid, Louii King, Lucinda Belle, Luke Kohen, Mikey Pauker, My Silent Bravery, Nina Grae, Psychic Twin, R E L, Ray Bean, RYNO, Shantala, Talia Dalton, Willow Stephens
Alexis Ware, Alicia Dunams, Casilda Zackhariyas, Danielle Grozavu, David Sacks, Dr. Aparajita Jeedigunta, Emi Ollin, Hard Charlie, Jen The Rainmaker, Kimberly Ariella, Krystal Aranyani, Lisa Stuart, Melissa Drake, Mendi Baron, Rhyanna Watson, Robyn Stern, Sara Mandel, Sarah BL, Sovereign University, The Breathe Center, Yoni Temple School
Abreesha*, B Hill, Domogee, Meira Batya, Sey x Yes, Shlome
In a time where so many of us have been confined to our homes and have lost our outlets for social connection and engagement, the DBYB festival promises to lift us up and create a community where we can come together, feel inspired and discover our own cheat codes to happiness.
As Valentine’s Day quickly approaches, the team at 360 Magazine has come together to share their favorite gift ideas that your loved ones are sure to cherish. When getting that special someone a gift, it’s important that it’s romantic as well as useful and these gifts encompass these qualities.
ArT Wine Preserver®
More people are finding reasons to enjoy a glass of wine at home these days. In some areas, the bars still aren’t open. As kids go back to school, parents are finding themselves needing an extra glass of wine or two, especially with homeschooling and distance learning this year. What’s a better gift for Valentine’s Day than a tool to preserve this romantic beverage.
Most opened bottles of wine go to waste and an estimated $1.5 billion worth of wine is poured out every year due to oxidation. ArT Wine Preserver® wants to change this wasteful drinking habit. At the same time, it’s promoting moderation drinking in a sustainable way. This made in the USA, recyclable wine saver uses pure argon gas to displace oxygen. Argon gas is the preferred method by winemakers to prevent oxidation in wine.
Argon is a natural atmospheric gas that’s non-toxic and non-reactive. It makes the perfect wine preserver because it doesn’t react with your wine flavors or aromas, it simply displaces the oxygen. It also, keeps wine fresh 7 to 30 day, preserves up to 40 bottles per can and takes two seconds to use.
Oakley® and Patrick Mahomes II recently launched the Patrick Mahomes II Signature Series. Dreamt up by the reigning Super Bowl Champion and MVP, the debut sunglass of his Signature Series is a fresh and unexpected take on the all-new Sutro Lite. The stylish and functional frame features discoverable details throughout to honor the unconventional talent who is shaping the future of the sport. These are the perfect gift for the athlete in your life.
The frame features a red color theme for the quarterback’s teams: Kansas City Chiefs and Texas Tech, an etched lens with II for Mahomes, and a unique print that nods to the MVP’s nicknames “Showtime” and “2 PM.” Each frame is also equipped with Oakley’s Prizm™ Lens Technology, designed to enhance color and contrast to see more detail, and a custom microbag that features his signature.
“When I first joined Team Oakley, I was instantly drawn to the Sutro family – a bold and sleek performance frame that is style driven for life off-the-field,” said Mahomes. “Now today, to have the opportunity to launch my own Signature Series that represents who I am as an athlete has been an honor.”
Patrick Mahomes II Signature Series – Starting at $196
David Beckham Sports NEQI Mask
David Beckham, known for his high-quality performance and superiority in the world of Professional Soccer, is known to dress as equally well as he plays. The greatest soccer player of our time spares no details, especially when it comes to wearing a mask, and is among the latest celebrities to wear superior face covering, NEQI Reusable Mask!
Stay safe (and soft) with NEQI, the UK brand that specializes in keeping you clean and safe, which has now made its way to the USA via Amazon.com. Natives of the Earth standing for Quality and Innovation, is the motto that NEQI embodies. Founded in 2020, NEQI focuses on producing premium face coverings, disinfecting sprays, and hand cleansing gel products. NEQI believes good health belongs to everyone and stands behind quality.
The design affordable, reusable, sustainable face masks are lightweight, ultra-breathable and easy to style. Designed with comfort in mind to ensure we are protecting our environment as well as ourselves. Masks come in 3 colors and multiple sizes, all perfectly pocket-size for on-the-go storage. No one imagined face masks would be the perfect Valentine’s Day gift, but in 2021, nothing says I love you like protection from Covid. The masks come in two colors and sizes and there is also a children’s option.
Nothing says Valentine’s Day quite like exquisite jewelry for that special someone. Jewelry has always been a classic gift for Valentine’s Day and The House of Luxury will ensure you pick the right piece. For Valentine’s Day The House of Luxury has created a beautiful selection of fine jewelry from their leading designers Alessa Jewelery, Tabbah, Aisha Baker, Terzihan, YEPREM and Dreamboule.
From a Y-NOT Necklace by YEPREM in 18K White Gold in Diamonds to Fizzy: Red Enamel Square Earring by Terzihan in 18K Rose Gold with Diamonds and Red Enamel, these superb selections are sure to be a hit with any woman in your life.
A variety of pieces and styles – Starting at $1,700
The “Don’t Block Your Blessings” Festival
Give your loved ones the gift of blessings and mental health as we navigate what holidays look like through Covid-19. We have loved watching the Don’t Block Your Blessings movement develop. They have announced a one of a kind live-stream festival featuring musicians, artists, and some of the most innovative minds in self-growth and healing. The DBYB Festival boasts three interactive rooms on an exclusive virtual platform allowing festival-goers to jump from room to room attending talks and sessions, accessing musical performances, and viewing live art as it’s created.
Produced by Erez Safar, whose first live-stream festival, Lo-Freq Fest, was featured in Billboard, and shared around the globe. The debut DBYB festival featured over 40+ world-wide presenters with 25,774 viewers.
The next festival will be free to participate in and free to attend virtually, and is set to take place on Valentine’s (Sunday February 14th), between 6-9pm PST.
Casio has recently introduced an all-new timepiece to G-SHOCK’s premium Full Metal Series, the GMWB5000RD-4. The new model is constructed with a tough yet fashionable exterior that boasts an eye-catching red stainless-steel case and solid stainless steel band.
The latest Full Metal 5000 model carries on the tradition of the original G-SHOCK DW-5000C with its classic square case shape and digital display. The GMWB5000RD-4 also features a band created with a bold red IP finish, and a screw back with a diamond-like carbon finish for outstanding wear resistance. This is sure to be a show-stopping gift for anyone in your life.
In addition to an updated look, the new Full Metal timepiece comes equipped with several of G-SHOCK’s new and most premium technical features, including Bluetooth Connectivity via the G-SHOCK Connected app, and Multi-Band 6 Atomic Timekeeping for self-adjusting and accurate hour / date display virtually anywhere on the globe. It also boasts a STN-LCD digital display that makes the watch easy to read from any angle, as well as Tough Solar Technology, making it capable of self-charging even with low sun exposure.
The GMWB5000RD-4 will retail for $600 and be available for purchase starting January 20th at select Jewelers, the G-SHOCK Soho Store, and gshock.com.
New accessories from ZAGG Brands that support the Galaxy S21, S21+, and S21 Ultra have just been announced and they would be the perfect gift for any Samsung Galaxy User.
The line consists of two screen protectors as well as a variety of cases in four different colors. The GlassFusion VisionGuard+ with D3O is a hybrid screen protector that is engineered to be unbreakable and features an Eyesafe® technology layer that blocks HEV blue light without distorting the color performance of the smartphone screen. It also contains anti-microbial properties that protect the screen protector by inhibiting the growth of odor-causing bacteria. The GlassFusion+ with D3O, is a slightly cheaper model without VisionGuard+.
The phone cases include the Havana , the Crystal Palace, the Copenhagen, and the Denali, all priced reasonably starting at $29.99. The cases are slim, stylish and protective, everything you could want from a phone case.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Accessories – Starting at $29.99
PUMA x Michael Lau Collection
This new unisex collection consists of footwear, apparel and accessories that features hand-drawn pencil graphics, graph paper textures and other playful design references with a hand-made inspired look and feel. Key footwear styles include bold iterations of the Mirage Mox, Ralph Sampson Mid, Ralph Sampson Lo and RS-2K. Additional items from the pack include the Two-Face track jacket which features a unique print with a pencil mark graphics, a reversible style and a tall collar, a Flat Brim Cap with a detachable “PUMA SAMPLE STUFF” graphic and a Tote Bag that comes with unique graphic prints.
The PUMA x Michael Lau collection will be available on PUMA.com, PUMA stores and select retailers starting Friday, January 22, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
Sperry has always been a classic shoe perfect for the summer. With a timeless style this shoe is 50 percent boat shoe and 50 percent sneaker which makes this boat-sneaker hybrid come with double the wearability.
It has a canvas upper featuring rawhide laces and uses Sperry’s 360° Lacing System™ for a customized fit. The shoe also features a non-marking flexible rubber outsole with molded Wave-Siping™ which provides the ultimate no-slip traction so these shoes can handle any slippery terrain. Sperry has a large selection of shoes for men, women and children which makes them the perfect gift for anyone.
Sperry Men’s Bahama II Sneaker – Starting at $59.95
Oakley® x Turtle Beach
The gaming accessory brand Turtle Beach recently announced a new partnership with Oakley®, a leader in sports performance and optical innovation. As a brand rooted in competition, Oakley continues expanding its lineup of eyewear developed for gamers who share a passion for performance. The new partnership pairs Turtle Beach’s expertise in creating high-quality, glasses-friendly gaming headsets with Oakley’s quest for optimized vision and performance in a collection designed to help gamers see better, hear better and conquer their opponents.
The new collection features two products. The Metalink RX features headset-compatible temples to ensure they stay in place even in the most intense gaming sessions and come with a custom Turtle Beach logo microbag.
The Frogskins Lite is a limited-edition set that is the newest evolution of Oakley’s most iconic lifestyle eyewear. The eyewear features a throwback Turtle Beach color scheme, Oakley’s Prizm Ruby Iridium Lenses, and a rainbow gradient Oakley and Turtle Beach logo on the temple. Either of these are a great selection for Valentine’s Day for any game lover in your life.
Oakley® and Turtle Beach Collection – Starting at $166
Whether your partner cranks up the music during workouts, listens to a podcast on a walk or has days filled with work calls, Adidas Headphones has you covered with lightweight headphones, long battery life and uncompromising sound.
In-ear headphones; knitted tangle free cord and passive transparency to hear your surroundings
16-hour battery life
$150 retail, $99 sale
The upcoming sale runs February 7- February 13 on Adidas’ website for all colorways, like the eye-popping Signal Coral. Adidas has a large variety of headphones for your loved ones, that are sure to support
Valentine’s Day is all about decadence and your Valentine’s Day meal should be no different. What better way to celebrate than with caviar, and D’Artagnan’s Ossetra Malossol Caviar is the caviar of the highest quality.
D’Artagnan’s Ossetra Malossol Caviar is unpasteurized, low-salt and preservative-free, giving it the best authentic and fresh flavor. This caviar is harvested from Siberian sturgeon on a state-of-the-art aquafarm in France. This sustainable product follows the strictest of animal welfare and environmental protocols. The high quality of the caviar is evident in its color, flavor, and texture. The round, plump pearls have a lingering and nutty flavor reminiscent of hazelnuts or fresh walnuts. With ultra-silky mouthfeel and a color that ranges from clear grey to golden chestnut to deep brown, this buttery caviar is truly unforgettable. Make your Valentine’s Day extra special with caviar.
Farm-Raised Ossetra Caviar Malossol – Starting at $124.99
WHOOP Health Monitor
In case you aren’t familiar, WHOOP is a 24/7 fitness tracker and health monitor that provides personalized, actionable feedback and tracks key metrics like heart rate variability, resting heart rate, respiratory rate, and sleep staging with industry-leading accuracy. WHOOP distills all of this data down into three key pillars – recovery, strain and sleep – and provides coaching so users can balance their daily lives, train optimally and unlock the secrets to their body’s true potential.
In April, WHOOP reported findings about the importance of tracking respiratory rate (RR) during the pandemic, and how sudden changes could be significant. In short, WHOOP found that people who had tested positive for COVID-19 had elevated respiratory rates (while people experience most other illnesses did not exhibit that change in RR). Pro golfers, Nick Watney & Scott Stallings, both used WHOOP to track RR and subsequent positive tests for COVID-19, and countless members have shared similar experiences on social media. Lots more info on WHOOP & COVID-19 here and here.
STRAIN, SLEEP & RECOVERY
Strain is a measure of the cardiovascular load your body takes on over the course of a day or during a given activity. WHOOP does not count steps, but calculates your personalized exertion and quantifies it on a scale from 0-21.
Recovery is a personalized measure of how ready your body is to take on strain each day. WHOOP calculates your recovery based on 4 physiological markers: heart rate variability (HRV), resting heart rate (RHR), respiratory rate (RPM), and sleep.
Sleep Performance is the amount you slept compared to how much sleep you needed. WHOOP auto-detects your sleep and wake times each day as well as your sleep stages throughout the night to determine your sleep performance for that night.
The WHOOP Lux Kit includes a band and clasp and is the perfect gift for your loved one this Valentine’s Day. It’s sophisticated and useful, so it’s sure to be a hit. Add a WHOOP membership to your gift so they can always stay healthy.
The apparel brand Roots Of Fight and American stand-up comedian, actor, and producer Kevin Hart recently announced that they have joined forces and launched a limited-edition apparel collection. The collection pays homage to different milestones in the comedian’s life that helped get him to where he is today.
The first capsule in the collection, titled the PHILLY 15 & ERIE COLLECTION, pays tribute to his North Philadelphia roots and the intersection where he grew up. Kevin is unequivocally Philly-made and the art in this capsule commemorates that formative time in his life. This capsule, and others to follow in the coming months, will see a portion of all proceeds going to charities.
Items included in this first capsule include a hoody, sweatshirt and tee, which retail for $48 – $85. The full collection is available in limited quantity for purchase now, exclusively on rootsoffight.com.
This month House of Luxury launched their new hyper-immersive luxury retail platform ‘Virtual Xperience‘. It is literally a virtual House of Luxury where exquisitely furnished 3D spaces like the ‘Parlour of Perfection’ and the ‘Chamber of Calibre’ accentuate choice designer products ranging from fine jewelry by renowned brands such as YEPREM, Simone and Alessa; contemporary art by Banksy, Condo and Kaws; interior décor from Fendi and Ralph Lauren; haute horlogerie from Patek Philippe and others; as well as limited-edition objet d’arts created by leading artists such as Zhuang Hong Yi.
This is the perfect way to shop for luxury gifts this Valentine’s Day in a covid friendly way. You will be able to find the most lavish, designer gifts that will wow anyone on your gift list.
These clothes are the perfect unique gift for any fashion lover in your life. With bold prints and snazzy design, this is a gift that will show your love in a BOLD way.
“We use the post-apocalyptic artwork of BOURBON SUMMER CARTOON CRISIS! to produce exquisitely constructed clothing from the most sumptuous and sustainable fabrics. Our clothes explore the tension between ostentatious prints and refined silhouettes. These garments embody the CRISIS philosophy—finding meaning and beauty amidst the chaos that surrounds us.” Find out more about the product line and the company here.
There’s no better way to say I love you than with food! This chocolate heart pizza from Sugar Plum is a unique treat to share with your loved one.
The solid milk chocolate heart is topped with a festive assortment of chocolate candies and finished with a white chocolate drizzle. Every Chocolate Heart Pizza comes with a wooden mallet, so you can feel free to break this heart into bite-sized bits knowing it’ll never return the favor! Perfect to share with your girls on Galentine’s day as well! Sugar Plum also offers complimentary two-day shipping!
LATAM Cargo, the leader in air cargo transportation to, from, and within Latin America, today announced, more than 210 LATAM Cargo Boeing 767-300 freighters took off from Colombia and Ecuador, carrying 12,600 tons of flowers for the 2020 Valentine’s Day season. Together with Mother’s Day, this represents the peak of the fresh flower export activity. This year’s figure represents a growth of 45% compared to last year.
The increase is the result of the company’s strategy implemented in 2019, which created a permanent and stable increase of operations in Colombia and Ecuador. This year, roses, mixed bouquets and carnations were the stars of the flower season which started the week of January 14 and ended on February 10. Colombia and Ecuador were the main producers, and their flowers were shipped to the United States, the Netherlands and China, among other destinations.
“In 2019 we decided to expand our cargo operations in Colombia and Ecuador to offer our customers enhanced frequency and capacity options,” said Felipe Caballero, LATAM Cargo Senior Revenue Manager for South America. “For the company, these Valentine’s Day figures are proof that our customers understand and value our commitment and effort to provide permanent and stable solutions for their shipments.”
Chrysanthemums, iris, gypsophila and greenery were also big hits this season, mostly coming from Bogota and Medellin in Colombia and from Quito in Ecuador, and heading to markets in North America, Europe, Oceania, South America and Asia. This connectivity was made possible thanks to the more than 145 destinations that make up LATAM Cargo’s network, linking Latin America to the rest of the world.
More frequencies and destinations
In Colombia, the company operated 110 flights after adding 38 new frequencies to its normal operation during this period, and in Ecuador it operated 100 flights, with 58 frequencies more than the regular operation during these four weeks.
In all, the operation was 2.2 times larger than an ordinary week in Colombia and 3.5 times larger in Ecuador, totaling 6,600 tons of flowers transported from Colombia and 6,000 tons from Ecuador.
The main consumer of fresh flowers was the United States, with 90% of all flowers transported by the company (11,300 tons). Demand went up 65% compared to a regular period and 45% compared to Valentine’s Day 2019.
Miami played a major role as one of the world’s largest distribution hubs and home to LATAM Airlines Group cargo operations base.
Other importing markets include the Netherlands with 850 tons (7%), and to a lesser extent, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing (China), Madrid (Spain) and Sydney (Australia). Flowers were also flown into New York (USA), Santiago (Chile), and New Zealand, among other destinations.
“LATAM Cargo successfully completed a highly complex operation to maintain the freshness and shelflife of our customers’ flowers. This positive result comes at the same time as we introduce to the market our new perishable care, FRESH, which seeks to safeguard the freshness and shelflife of perishable products,” said Cristina Oñate, VP of Marketing and Product Development for LATAM Cargo. “FRESH is our stable and scalable approach to meeting this challenge, and offers a global standard of cold chain management for perishables across our LATAM network.”
LATAM Cargo in Colombia
At the end of 2019, LATAM Cargo launched an expansion plan in Colombia that saw a gradual increase in frequencies to strengthen its presence in that market, and enhance the country’s export and import role.
Currently LATAM Cargo, has nearly tripled its export offerings between Bogota and Miami, going from 6 to 15 weekly flights. In Medellin, the company maintains its presence with six-per-week frequencies to Miami.
On the import side, LATAM Cargo opened the Miami–Cali route with two weekly frequencies, which will provide a greater flow of cargo from North America and offer a new gateway to Colombia. The company will also soon announce the start of operation of a new route from USA to Colombia, in addition to Bogotá and Cali, to continue exploring new destinations in the Latin American country.
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