Myth: Women hate gadget gifts. Truth: We know (from experience, believe it or not) that isn't true. While the old adage about never giving a woman a gift that plugs in is generally good advice, it's more rooted in men thoughtlessly giving presents they like than the often-erroneous assumption that gals and gadgets don't mix. All you need to do is pair some thought with your tech toy, and you just might reach her On switch.
But where to start? That's where we come in. Guys, we've got 10 Valentine's Gifts for your sweetheart — from tech fashion to MP3 players made for romance — to help you navigate your way through this delicate obstacle course. Yes, buying gadgets for women can be done successfully. Click Continue to see us prove it.
This is just too cute. You both wear these $25 8-Bit Dynamic Life shirts, and the closer you get to each other, the more hearts light up on your chest. Its default state has two hearts a-glowing, displaying that special place she has in your heart even when you're far away. Get within hugging distance, and the removable animated decals go nuts with all six hearts a-blazin'. There's even a special $12 transmitter for those solitary lonely hearts, and the shirt glows brighter as you get closer to the strategically-placed transmitter. Slip it inside that fancy new car of yours, or maybe place it in the middle of your Star Wars LEGO collection, and your shirt will instantly and visibly display your heart-felt affection.
There are plenty of ways to test your love, but this Addject Kissing Love Tester takes it down to the electronic level. The fun part is trying it out, an act of pure experimentation where you each hold the heart in one hand and touch your lips together. If you've hit paydirt, the little heart will emit a warm glow and burst into a rousing chorus of "Love is in the Air." If there's nothing happening between you, you'll hear a jarring buzzer sound. Not to worry — you'll just have to perform the test again and again until you get it right.
Check out this halter top with fiber optic light running all through it. The $150 shirt's lighting can shine for 12 hours on a set of three AAA batteries, and it runs as cool as your lady is hot while she's wearing it. The low-voltage light strands are barely visible by day, but get her in a dimly-lit atmosphere and watch her light up the night. You can't fold these shirts, but after a smoky, sweaty night out on the town they are thankfully hand-washable. The tech is available in a variety of styles and colors, and there's even a muscle shirt for guys.
What better way to warm your loved-one's heart than with this Warming Heart from the Museum of Modern Art? It's made of fleece and stays hot for 45 minutes after a short trip to the microwave. It has purified organic wheat inside, retaining heat and keeping her warm, perfect for a chilly Valentine's Day and days after when you may not always be there to keep those chills away. Best of all, she'll associate you with warmth and love, thinking of you every time she heats up this fleece pillow. Not a bad deal for $16, and not a pesky plug in sight.
Here's a gift that won't cost you a thing, but you might want to back it up with some candy or at least a card: a special (but tame) Valentine's Day striptease video from Jib Jab. You remember these clowns, don't you, the ones who lampooned both Bush and Kerry with that viral video in the '04 campaign? This goof electro-magically keys your face on a guy stripping for his mate (whose face you also supply — be sure to include the right gal's pic), something that you might be able to do in person, but this might go over better because it's not even supposed to be sexy. Might be good for a chuckle or two, and ladies, you can be the star of your own striptease, too.
The nylon construction of this Citizen Citizen black rose brooch will shield your valentine from even the most violent forces. Designed by Tobias Wong, the bulletproof rose is intended to be a fashion statement and conversation piece. It can also be an expression of your protective instincts. Just be sure to explain the concept to her thoroughly lest she believe you have plans for getting a little too physical. Quite a heavy statement for the only the most off-the-wall paramour, its price reflects its unusual nature — all this high fashion will cost you a cool $175.
Aw, look at this pair of little music players from Chinese manufacturer Newman. The two MP3 players can work perfectly apart, but put them together for the complete experience of … two MP3 players being near each other. Kinda like your relationship, no? Notice the two face silhouettes kissing each other as the two halves are brought together. Details are scarce, but the player supports MP3 and WMA audio formats, and their touching design operates by, you guessed it, touch-sensitive controls. You might want to keep this idea in mind for next year's Valentine's Day, because it's not quite available stateside just yet.
Here's a Swarovski crystal-festooned gadget gift that uses LEDs for a practical purpose. No matter how dark and romantic it gets, your lovely lady will always be able to apply that luscious lip lacquer with this Go Light on My Lips LED-lit lip gloss in a clever container and applicator. The $38 bauble is available with a variety of lip gloss colors inside, including (gotta love these color names) chili spice, popping pink, red carpet, brown sugar baby, and invisible. And hey, that bright little light might come in handy for a number of things you might be doing in the dark.
What would Valentine's Day be without chocolate? Tcho Chocolate must be the first to be beta tasted. Its choco-team is headed up by Wired magazine co-founder Louis Rossetto, who decided to dismantle an entire chocolate factory located in a German castle and plop it down right in the middle of San Francisco. His Ghanian chocolate bars are now available for an initial beta taste test for $4 for a 50-gram bar. Taking a tech-minded approach to the making and marketing of chocolate, Rossetto's minions monitor all the chocolate manufacturing with the latest techno-gear, and the company is working with farmers to gather only the best ingredients for these fair-traded confections. Try some, and you can go to the Tcho web site and tell 'em what you think, just like a real beta tester.