You may think that expensive gifts are the way to a girl's heart. Not necessarily true. You can select thoughtful, charming, cute or fun items that get your message across - all without burning a hole in your wallet.

Here are some ideas for the special lady or ladies in your life. The best part - she doesn't have to know what the price tag reads.

Of course every girl loves to receive flowers, but experts say you can always expect to pay more this time of year. The National Retail Federation reported that last year, consumers shelled out an average of $79.99 for a dozen long-stemmed roses with a vase. Instead of selecting an expensive bouquet, why not opt for a single rose or other flowers? Local florists sell single stems for just a few dollars apiece. Many supermarkets now offer a floral department well stocked with buds of all hues. A mixed bunch of stems in her favorite color - pink carnations, bright sunflowers, orange tulips, for instance - will show that you've been paying attention, and warm her heart to the tune of $5 to $10.

Precious gems and metals scream commitment! And will cost you a bundle, too. Fashion jewelry is all the rage, with faux gems, funky shapes and sparkling costume bling. Consider hoop earrings, bangle bracelets and chunky necklaces, all of which can be purchased at large retailers or discount shops. Bonus: retailers are looking to make room for the new spring styles, so deep discounts can be found.

Who doesn't own a cell phone or mobile device these days? Tiny cases in myriad styles and designs are the ideal accessory for your gal. Prices range from just a few dollars and come in a wide array of colors and patterns to suit every taste or lifestyle.

This is an excellent time of year to find great bargains on hats and gloves, with retailers looking to clear their shelves for the new spring styles. Scarves, especially the pashmina styles, are a trendy fashion item and can be purchased for less than $10, even in the larger retail stores.

Candles and Candleholders
Women love candles, regardless of whether they are scented, tapers, pillars or floating. In fact, the National Candle Association reported that U.S. retailers sell an estimated $2 billion in candles annually. If you're unsure, however, of her favorite scent, choose something on the subtle side, like vanilla (the most popular scent), citrus or soft floral, such as lilac or lavender. Likewise, etched glass or crystal candle holders can make a lovely addition to any room.

Books and Music
Cookbooks, best sellers, biographies of famous women and crafts and hobbies are always a good choice for your favorite lady. Opt for paperback versions, which are less expensive than their hardcover editions. Check out the best-seller lists for what's trending. However, steer clear of diet, how-to and self-help selections.

Music CDs and mp3 downloads also are wonderful gift selections. Better yet - make a list of her favorite tunes and burn a personalized CD for her.

Boxed chocolates are a perennial favorite - U.S. consumers spend more than $19 billion on chocolate candy each year, so you can hardly go wrong with this choice. Wide varieties can be found in supermarkets, drug stores and gift shops, many for less than $10.

But you're not necessarily locked in to chocolate. Go for homemade jams and butters (found in specialty shops) and offer to make her breakfast. Teas and fresh ground coffee beans can also make an impact. Package them with a whimsy mug for a complete look.

The Bottom Line
You don't have to break the bank on Valentine's Day to find just the right gift for that special lady. Just be daring, different and thoughtful. She'll love you for it.

Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Which Kind of Life Insurance Is Best for You?

    Parse the pros and cons of different policy types to ensure the best coverage for your needs.
  2. Investing

    Redefining the Stop-Loss

    Using Stop-losses for trading doesn’t mean ‘losing money’, but instead think about the money you'll start saving once you learn how they work.
  3. Budgeting

    10 Ways to Save Money at the Farmers' Market

    Strategic shopping can help your budget as well as your health.
  4. Savings

    6 Ways to Save Money on Back-to-School Stuff

    Those school-supply lists just keep getting longer each year. Here's how to shop smart.
  5. Insurance

    How to Shop for Home Insurance

    Tips for getting the best protection for your place and possessions.
  6. Personal Finance

    Sending Money: MoneyGram vs. Western Union

    Comparing the differences between the services – and the fees.
  7. Retirement

    Why Millennials Should Invest in a Roth IRA

    Saving for retirement is important, and it's important to start early. A Roth IRA is a great option for low-earners just entering the workforce.
  8. Home & Auto

    Are Home Inspections Worth It? - Price vs. Value

    If you’re wondering whether home inspection is worth the investment, the following information will help you decide.
  9. Budgeting

    The True Cost of Home Caregiving

    Caring for eldery family in-home might be unavoidable, but most caregivers don't realize the true cost of doing so.
  10. Savings

    Millennials' Money Habits: How to Help

    Millennials gleaned much of their financial savings habits from their parents. Here's where they could use some help.
  1. Linked Transfer Account

    Accounts held by an individual at a financial institution that ...
  2. Pension Risk Transfer

    When a defined benefit pension provider offloads some or all ...
  3. Foreign remittance

  4. Marginal Propensity to Save

    The proportion of an aggregate raise in pay that a consumer spends ...
  5. Savings Rate

    The amount of money, expressed as a percentage or ratio, that ...
  6. 529 Savings Plan

    A tax-advantaged method of saving for future college expenses ...
  1. How does the trust maker transfer funds into a revocable trust?

    Once a revocable trust is created, a trust maker transfers funds or property into the trust by including them in a list with ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How is marginal propensity to save calculated?

    Marginal propensity to save is used in Keynesian macroeconomics to quantify the relationship between changes in income and ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What is the importance of residual value in an automobile lease?

    The residual value of a car is often used by banks and auto dealerships to determine how much to charge per month for a lease. ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. When is an expense ratio considered high and when is it considered low?

    A number of factors determine when an expense ratio is relatively high or low, but a good, low expense ratio is generally ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What is the difference between residual income and savings?

    Residual income, or recurring income, is income earned on a continuous basis for completed work. It differs from linear income, ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What is the most effective way to write a successful budget?

    Before you begin writing a budget, gather all of your bank statements, bills and credit card statements for a given month. ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Trading Center

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!