Beyond flowers, chocolate: What women are buying for Valentine's - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Beyond flowers, chocolate: What women are buying for Valentine's Day

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Valentine's Day is Friday, and men, on average, will spend more than twice what women will spend on gifts. That's according to the National Retail Federation.

While there are plenty of ads this time of year telling men to buy their partners flowers, chocolate and jewelry, women are often forced to be more creative.

Ellen Liberg owns Fig Leaf Intimates in downtown Dubuque. She says love is in the air, and that's good for her business. A flurry of pheromones ferries customers through her doors.

"We have both men and women coming in. The gentlemen come in and they're looking for some pretty things for their significant others," Liberg said. "The ladies are doing the same thing. They're coming in, trying to find the things that their significant others would like to see them in."

Romance is on the brains of men and women, alike, leading them to items in Liberg's store ranging from lingerie to chocolate sauce.

"You could drizzle it on ice cream or you can drizzle it on your significant other," Liberg said with a laugh.

Over at the Bluff Street Brew Haus, owner Jerry Anderson said women are finding gifts for their 'brew-it-yourself' sweethearts.

"I have both male and female customers out there, but beer-making, the vast majority of my clientele is the guys," Anderson said, "so wives and girlfriends come in looking for gifts for them. You know, it makes the Christmas and the Valentine's Day shopping a little easier."

At Dubuque's Calico Bean Market, owner Teri Connely said some Valentine's Day gifts have nothing to do with romance.

"We had a dad that came in, and he did three boxes for his kids at school. All of them must be at college or away," Connely said. "A lot of the flavored pretzels, peanut butter, of course, a staple. One got coffee, one got cappuccino, one got chai."

Women are also helping to pamper their significant others for Valentine's Day. Julia Theisen is co-owner of Body & Soul spa in Dubuque.

"It's one of our most favorite holidays. It's like, 'Oh, love is in the air!' And you can feel it when people come in," Theisen said. "We get a lot of women coming in, or they call in, to book side-by-side massage."

The classic Valentine's Day gifts, however, are not going anywhere. The National Retail Federation says nearly half of all Valentine's Day shoppers will still buy candy, a third will give flowers and more than half will send a card.

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