14 Nostalgic Gifts To Give On Valentine's Day

Ad failed to load

Valentine's Day is a stressful holiday for adults, whether you're single and stuck watching 50 Shades of Grey on your couch, or in a relationship and feeling pressured to come up with a "perfect" date, or starting something new and not sure whether you're at V-Day status or not (the worst!) Back in the day, though, Valentine's Day was a great opportunity to overindulge on Russell Stover chocolates, watch Rugrats' Valentine's Day specials, and send your crush secret heart-shaped cards in class. Now, though, Valentine's Day is a good time to give nostalgic gifts, so at least that'll cut through all the happy couple noise.

Indeed, even for grownups, Valentine's Day is a prime excuse to sate your sweet tooth with abandon via childhood treats like candy hearts, gummies, and the aforementioned Russell Stover's. It's also a great time to give your, lovers, loved ones, crushes, friends and other objects of affection small tokens from a simpler time, one in which boyfriends didn't routinely break up with you a couple weeks before Valentine's Day so they could spend February 14 playing video games with their buddies while you stuck a straw in a bottle of Two Buck Chuck and marathoned Arrested Development.

Anyway, here are some good buys:

Ad failed to load

1Necco Sweethearts

Via Target.com

Necco Sweethearts, $2, Target

I'm not sure whether these are nostalgic or just necessary, but it is against the law to celebrate Valentine's Day without forcing someone to eat candy hearts. These babies are chalky, hard to chew, and odd-tasting—what even is the white flavor??!—but they also effectively convey old-timey messages of luuuuurve, like "Fax Me," and, um, "Call Me," which has also been phased out IMO.

2Valentina and Valentino

Via Amazon

Valentina and Valentino, $8, Amazon

When I was a kid, my parents gave me a little Valentine's Day gift every year, thereby tricking me into believing the holiday was a happy day for treats and plush toys instead of a celebration of Single's Awareness. One year, I got Valentino, a special Valentine's Beanie Baby with a beautiful, soft heart. The next year, Valentino got a mate, Valentina. Like all my Beanie Bears, I encased their tags in plastic and stuck them on a shelf in hopes that they would accrue worth, which, I am certain they did not, but they are still adorable, and available online for your gifting purposes.

3Romeo + Juliet Movie Poster

Via Movie Poster Shop

Romeo + Juliet Movie Poster, $14, Walmart

Baz Luhrrman's 1996 masterpiece Romeo + Juliet was THE hottest love story of my youth, in part because Young Leo has never looked better, but also because tragic romance seemed really appealing in elementary school. IRL, it is definitely NOT, but the film (and soundtrack) lives on in the hearts and minds of many a millennial. Gift your Shakespearean partner with a framed or unframed poster while playing "Kissing You" on repeat. You can thank me later.

Ad failed to load

4Miss Piggy Kissing Kermit the Frog Salt Shaker

Via eBay

Miss Piggy Kissing Kermit the Frog Salt Shaker, $22, eBay

An equally tragic love affair, Miss Piggy never quite won Kermit over, despite multiple relationship go-arounds and plenty of attempts at wooing. Though it's definitely time to Miss Piggy to move on — girl, you deserve an amphibian who worships you — you can relive the duo's better moments via this fantastic ceramic salt shaker set.

5Lisa Frank Puppy Love Binder and Notebook

Via Amazon

Lisa Frank Puppy Love Binder and Notebook, $13, Amazon

Lisa Frank is probably the most recognizable '90s icon at this point, having blessed many a millennial woman with a lifetime supply of sparkly stickers and unicorn art over the years. Puppy Love was always my favorite of her designs (because, puppies, duh), hence my excitement over this fantastic binder and notebook set. You might not use this one to hide love notes you'll never send to your third grade object of affection (Harrison Ford) but it makes for a decent budgeting ledger. ADULTING!

6Disney Lion King Sweetheart Simba & Nala

Amazon

Disney Lion King Sweetheart Simba & Nala, $53 to $65, Amazon

Someone bought this toy for me and my little sister when we were kids, which, if you think about it, is kind of weird. But anyway, I had Simba, she had Nala, and when you touched their magnetized noses together, they "kissed." It was cute. 20-plus years later, it's still cute.

Ad failed to load

7Framed Titanic Poster

Via Etsy

Framed Titanic Poster, $17, Etsy

There are two camps — those who think Romeo + Juliet is the greatest Leo love story of all time, and those who think that title belongs to Titanic. I am in the former, but those in the latter are acceptable. This gift is for them.

8Choose Your Decade Retro Candy Box

Via Candy Crate

Choose Your Decade Retro Candy Box, $35, Candy Crate

I didn't realize how era-specific come candies are, probably because my local bodega exclusively sells candy manufactured in 1992. But apparently treats like Candy Buttons, Lemonheads, Good 'n Plenty, and Chuckles are harder to come by in the 2010s, so it's worth snapping up this retro candy box to gift your millennial Valentine with lots of fun cavities.

9Now That's What I Call Music! 4

Amazon

Now That's What I Call Music! 4 CD, $24, Amazon

There are approximately 972 "Now That's What I Call Music!" iterations today, but this compilation, released in 2000, is the best one. Jam with your date to classic bangers like "I Knew I Loved You" by Savage Garden, "Meet Virginia" by Train, "Waiting for Tonight" by Jennifer Lopez, and, most importantly, "Blue (Da Ba Dee)" by Eiffel 65, which makes waaaaay more sense now that we've confirmed aliens walk among us.

Ad failed to load

10Beauty and the Beast Magic Rose

Via Etsy

Beauty and the Beast Magic Rose, $100, Etsy

Long before Emma Watson put on the iconic yellow dress, there was the OG Beauty and the Beast, in which an animated, signing Belle and Beast introduced legions of young children to the theory of Stockholm Syndrome. This recreation of the cursed rose that transformed a selfish prince into a beast is a great gift for Disney enthusiasts, Angela Lansbury fans, and dudes who never ask you any questions about yourself on dates.

11A Goofy Movie Valentine's Card

Via Etsy

A Goofy Movie Valentine's Card, $5, Etsy

Roxanne (voiced by the great Kelli Martin) was Max's crush in the seminal 1995 cinematic offering A Goofy Movie, and though the above image was definitely NOT in that film (which predates American Beauty by about four years), it makes for a funny V-Day card. Or an unsettling one. I can't really tell.

12Casper Enamel Pin

Via Etsy

Casper Enamel Pin, $8, Etsy

For most of the 1995 film Casper, the titular character was a friendly ghost. For one brief, beautiful scene, he was Devon Sawa. AND CHRISTINA RICCI JUST LET HIM GO. Huge mistake.

Ad failed to load

13Wax Lips

Via Old Time Candy

Wax Lips, $27, Old Time Candy

Wax lips are fun because they are both edible candy and a more affordable way to look like a Kardashian. Buy just one, or a whole box, for maximum pucker potential.

14A Walk to Remember DVD

Best Buy

A Walk to Remember DVD, $8, Best Buy

Of all the teen tearjerkers to grace the early aughts, this was the most defining. Shane West and Mandy Moore's doomed romance had everything: bad boys, good girls, a high school musical production, cancer, Jesus. I listen to the soundtrack at least once a month. Force your loved one to do the same.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

Here's Where Your Next Trip Should Be, Based On Your Zodiac Sign

If you've been craving a vacation, now is a good time to take the plunge. According to data collected by travel site Expedia, late winters and early spring are pretty much the best times of the year to go on vacation. Based on average airfare ticket …
By Callie Tansill-Suddath

Bustle's Editors On Jennifer Aniston + Adam Rippon

We've made it to Friday! It's been a pretty hectic week, and the news that Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux are splitting up might have put a damper on your weekend. But, if like many people you have Monday off, hopefully you can sit back and enjo…
By Rachel Simon

This Timeline Of Justin Theroux & Jennifer Aniston's Relationship Will Break Your Heart All Over Again

Just one day after Valentine's Day, actors Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux announced their breakup after seven years together. The celebrity couple, who were married for two-and-half years, separated quietly at the end of last year. This week, th…
By Priscilla Totiyapungprasert

19 Things Your Parents Told You Were Illegal In The '90s

Kids say — and think — the darnedest things. We have overactive imaginations, adults like to mess with us, and we don't always understand everything we hear. That's why some kids call strawberries "straw babies" — a boo-boo so adorable, you don't eve…
By Megan Grant

Why Uggs Are Never Going Away, Whether You Like Them Or Not

Uggs. The word alone can conjure up memories of teenage years, regrettable outfits, and undeniable comfort. But if, like me, you thought that you've already said goodbye to those fleece-lined tan boots, you can think again. It seems fashion has adopt…
By Lauren Sharkey

I Never Want To Write This Essay Again

I don't know where you were when you heard about Wednesday's high school shooting in Parkland, Florida. I don't know what you were doing, or how you tried to process the news. I do know this: you thought to yourself, not again. And yet, again. Of cou…
By Jenny Hollander

Netflix's New Romantic Movie Will Have You Crying Like It's 'The Fault In Our Stars'

Cancer movies are a heartbreaking staple of Hollywood and have been for decades. It's almost a law of nature: new year, new cancer movie. This year, it's Netflix's Irreplaceable You, a heartbreaking original about a longtime couple who get thrown for…
By Olivia Truffaut-Wong

A Study Suggests Drinking Soda Can Affect Your Fertility — But Don’t Freak Out Just Yet

An awful lot of things can affect fecundability — that is, the probability of conceiving within a single menstrual cycle — but can soda really decrease your chances of getting pregnant? A new study suggests that it might, although it turns out that t…
By Lucia Peters

Here Are All The Terms You Need To Know If You’re Watching Olympic Ski Events Right Now

Every four years the Winter Olympics rolls around to remind me that A) there are so many important Winter Olympic sports, and B) I know virtually nothing any of them. And I know for a fact, I'm not alone, I bet most people don't know what the differe…
By Danielle Colin-Thome

Money Actually CAN Buy Happiness — And Science Figured Out Exactly How Much It Costs

You’ve probably heard the saying “Money can’t buy happiness.” Personally, I’d be more than willing to test out that hypothesis myself, but researchers at Purdue University beat me to it. Researchers found that there is an actual amount of money it ta…
By Katie Mitchell

Kate Middleton Made Sales Of This $1 Secret Accessory Spike & She'll Turn You Into A Believer

There's a royal epidemic going on, people. It's one that causes any and everyone to obsess over the royal family's wardrobe and beauty routines, even if it means breaking the bank to look like them. So a frenzy was expected when Kate Middleton report…
By Summer Arlexis

Adam Rippon and Mirai Nagasu Have Matching Tattoos & The Story Is So Cute

Olympic season gives people the feels. From those shipping Canadian ice dancing pair Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir to Shaun White's gold medal win on Tuesday, the feels are real. Now, there's another reason to get all up in your emotions. Adam Rippon a…
By Shea Simmons

A New Study Says Being In A Relationship Could Change Your Taste In Wine — Here's How

I’d be willing to bet that for many of you, a nice bottle of wine is awaiting you in your near future — and if you’re planning on sharing that bottle with a partner, there might be more to your choice than meets the eye: According to recent research,…
By Lucia Peters

Carrie Brownstein On Why Even The Obama Era Should Have Enraged You

An icy January morning soon after Hollywood's show of solidarity for the #MeToo movement at the Golden Globes and almost exactly one year into the Trump Administration feels like a momentous time to be sitting across from Carrie Brownstein. The Sleat…
By Samantha Rollins

Here’s What The Upcoming Year Of The Dog Means For Your Chinese Zodiac Sign

On Feb. 16 the world will celebrate the Chinese New Year, welcoming the Year of the Dog in like the good doggo it is — we hope. A new year means new zodiac predictions for the 365 days ahead. So, what does the Year of the Dog mean for your Chinese zo…
By Brittany Bennett

7 Signs You're Ready To Get Into A Relationship, According To Experts

It can be difficult to tell when you're ready to start dating again. Maybe you're coming off of a bad breakup, maybe you've just been focused on other things. And, ironically, one of the signs that you're ready to be in a relationship is that you're …
By Lea Rose Emery

I Got A Breast Reduction & It Was About So Much More Than The Size Of My Boobs

As a young teenager, I pretty much reached peak physical maturity overnight. One day I was wearing my first training bra a la Lizzie McGuire, and the next I was sweatily fumbling around a Victoria’s Secret with 32DD boobs, trying to summon up the cou…
By Sierra Taylor Horton

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
via Romper

The 15 Best Fiction Books Of February Feature Tons Of Extraordinary Women

When the cold winds of February blow in, there's nothing I want more than to hide under my covers with a good book. Luckily, there's more than a few fantastic new fiction books coming out this month, so the only tough decision you'll have to make is …
By Melissa Ragsdale

These 10 Drugstore Red Lipsticks Are Under $10 & Actually *Amazing*

I adore makeup. There are few things I like more than getting myself fancied up in the mornings. It's a little ritual I get to do every day that makes me feel prettier and more put together. When my makeup is on, I'm ready to face the world — pun int…
via Romper

17 Moms Reveal The Most Disgusting Part Of Their Pregnancy

Pregnant bodies do weird-ass things. Weird-ass, gross things. I mean, my pregnant body did (twice), and I have long-suspected I'm not alone. So I asked other moms to share the most disgusting part of their pregnancy and I learned that, not only am I …
via Romper