This post is in partnership with Downy!
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the 17 years of Valentine’s Day with my husband, it’s that you don’t need to break the bank to have a sizzling date night.
One of our best Valentine’s Days, was back in back in 2009 when we had NO money. The idea was to go pick strawberries at a nearby U-Pick farm, then come home and make strawberry salad, strawberry cocktails and a strawberry dessert. Cute right? Our story actually ended up in the Miami Herald story about Valentine’s Day on a budget. We got the cover! This framed copy hangs in our hallway – we can never forget that Valentine’s Day!
And all these years later, we still love to make delicious meals at home for Valentine’s Day. Some have gone well, and some haven’t – like the year I tried to make ginger salmon and it was inedibly gingeriffic. Let’s just say I wish I had added Downy Fresh Protect to the laundry that day – because I really could have used some odor-protection that night!
For special date nights or romantic occasions, I try to make the event memorable by engaging all five senses – so here are a few tips to keep your date night fresh (and keep the outfit fresh, too!):
SCENT – For a lasting olfactory impression, layer your fragrances. For body it starts with a warm, fragrant body wash and lotion. For clothing, I add Downy Liquid Fabric Conditioner, which smells amazing and keeps my clothes soft, plus Downy Fresh Protect In-Wash Odor Shield Beads to keep all the bad smells from a date night OUT. Together, they keep my favorite clothes and go-to date night outfit looking their best AND smelling great all night long (like deodorant for my clothes!).
SIGHT – Even if you’re staying in, when it comes to makeup and style, go bold with your look. I actually love wearing red! I had to grow into this color and now I own it. Red makes me feel womanly. Amp up your look for a memorable occasion and it will lift your spirit (and look great in photos)! Valentine’s days, birthdays, date night all call for red lips if you ask me! I love a deep, noir red for romantic evenings. All you need is a bold lip and fresh, clean skin. Like this!
SOUND – Set the mood with music you both love. For romantic evenings, we love jazz and reggae. Mellow and with minimal lyrical distractions would be the preference.
TASTE – Whether you go out on the town or cook for each other at home, celebrate your favorite flavors. For date nights, I like spicy, flavorful food but I prefer to go light on the garlic (for obvious reasons)! I love foods like sushi, Indian, Greek — foods you can eat with your hands. There’s something sensual about that. And when I add Downy Fresh Protect to my laundry routine, I don’t need to worry about my clothes smelling like our food at the end of the night and can often get another wear out of them without needing to wash it. Score!
TOUCH – I love to wear something that makes me feel cuddly and cozy, like my favorite sweaters and cardigans for Valentine’s Day. This year, I plan to wear my favorite red Michael Jackson sweater because it’s so warm, cuddly and vibrant! But it’s starting to pill so I do my best to keep it looking it’s best. Naturally I use Downy Fabric Conditioner to keep it (and really all of my favorite sweaters) soft and to protect them from fading and fuzz.
Those are my date night/Valentine’s Day tips for a romantic experience that stimulates all your senses. Remember, if you’re cooking for two at home, try to come up with something easy and achievable that won’t have you cooking for hours. And when you try Downy, tell me how it goes for your clothes in the comments below!