From mothers and sisters to wives and girlfriends, women are some of the most important people in our lives. Therefore, finding the perfect gifts to celebrate these special females can be a daunting task. Fortunately, there are many great presents for everything from birthdays and anniversaries to holidays like Mother's Day, that are frugally priced without sacrificing quality.
Diamonds are a girl's best friend, but they can be the enemy of a budget-conscious shopper. Luckily, there are plenty of affordable jewelry items that will still make the woman on your gift list feel special and chic. Bangle bracelets are one of the hottest trends in accessories. They come in all different colors, designs and materials so it is easy to find one that will fit the recipient's taste. Retailers like Target price them from $10 to $40, while luxury brand Kate Spade sells some styles for under $50. Vintage pieces are all the rave, and they won't hurt your pocketbook.
Shoppers can become part of the thrift market, and find deals at thrift shops or purchase new jewelry that is inspired by the past. Online clothing store Mod Cloth specializes in retro looks. They offer everything from handcrafted beaded earrings to antique-inspired gold charm necklaces in the $20 to $50 price range. Cocktail rings are another top trend that has plenty of reasonably priced options. Rings that feature faceted and colored glass, stackable bands and trio designs are a hit with celebrities and regular ladies alike. Online retailer Stella & Dot offers some from $35 to $50. Macy's has a large selection of inexpensive cocktail rings from brands like Guess, Jessica Simpson and Rachel Rachel Roy that range from Art Deco elegance to bold and modern statement makers.
Social media sites like Pinterest, Houzz and Facebook have reinvigorated the interior design industry making gifts in this category hard to resist, just make sure you don't overspend out of excitement. For $50 or less, decorative pieces that can be placed on a coffee table, bookshelf or mantle don't cost much, but add tons of character to a room. Boutique online shop Dwell Studio sells small, animal-inspired statues like urchins, rhinos and sea stars in silver, white, brass and gold finishes for $24 to $36. The Pier 1 Imports chain has wall and tabletop mirrors ranging from $15 to $35. Pottery Barn's lanterns and decorative lights allow those with a shoestring budget to add a high-end look to indoor and outdoor living spaces. Colorful, cotton napkin sets and artistic candleholders are other ideas that have fancy appeal for minimal cash.
Soap, lotion, fragrance mist and makeup are luxurious treats that cost less than a month's worth of Starbucks coffee. Sephora's palettes and value sets are one way to score a beauty bargain. For example, their travel-size eyeshadow and lipstick collection contains $175 worth of products for $34. Bath & Body Works' extensive line of products includes 10-oz bottles of body gels that cost $11 and bubble baths and soaks for $12. Pair them with the shop's moisturizing body butters in matching scents and your total will still be under $30. Sister company Victoria's Secret also provides beauty products at low price points, in addition to their well-known lingerie. Steals like flavored lip glosses at four for $20, a five-piece makeup brush set for $28 and an eau de toilette gift box of four perfumes for $25 come in sophisticated packaging that gives your gift an expensive look for less.
Frigid temperatures aren't fun for the most part, but battling the chill is a bit easier in warm, cozy apparel. Nordstrom department store has a selection of fashion-forward scarves from designers like Jessica Simpson and Steve Madden, in bright colors and funky patterns along with more conservative styles, all for under $30. Fedoras, berets, felt cloches, trapper and newsboy hats are all hot trends for cold days.
Big-box store Kohl's carries all of these styles, some created by high-end designers like Vera Wang, from $10 to $30. The Isotoner brand was noted by Good Housekeeping magazine for having some of the best casual and dress gloves on the market for women. Their casual, insulated gloves priced at $35 offer layers of insulation down to the fingertips in colors like black, camel, navy, oyster and red. For a dressier appearance, try their spandex gloves that feature leather palm strips. Reviewers say these classy hand coverings, which retail for $40, are durable, water-resistant and perfect for rainy days. For extra discounts on winter accessories, shop in the early spring and summer when retailers lower prices to get them off the shelves fast.
The Bottom Line
A thoughtful Valentine's Day gift doesn't have to be expensive. Whether the women in your life like luxury items or more practical purchases, there are many choices that won't break the bank.