Olivia Culpo knows a thing or two about having the perfect Valentine’s Day, and her “ideal” version of our most romantic holiday involves celebrating more than just your significant other.
The former Miss Universe winner hosted the Stella Heartois Experience with Stella Artois and Bumble in Los Angeles this week, which she told us was “all about slowing down, enjoying time with friends and family and celebrating friendships and relationships.”
Part of Culpo’s Valentine’s Day plans always involves a celebration with her girlfriends, too, because “every day is a good day for Galentine’s Day.”
“An ideal Galentine’s Day night is everyone coming to the house and having a nice pregame while everyone gets ready, gets dressed up, you get a car service, go to dinner and have so much fun,” Culpo told In The Know’s Gibson Johns. “No boys allowed.”
As for her tips for celebrating Valentine’s Day with the No. 1 person in your life, Culpo, who is currently dating Carolina Panthers player Christian McCaffrey, had some salient advice for making it a special day you’ll never forget.
“Any type of surprise is really exciting, because it’s fun to give a surprise and it’s fun to receive a surprise. That kind of reciprocity on Valentine’s Day, to me, is ideal,” Culpo told ITK. “I can surprise someone I love, and I can also be surprised: Surprising someone with breakfast or them surprising you with breakfast first thing in the morning, or them surprising you with like a dinner or some type of experience.”
“Valentine’s Day more so than any other holiday is about the experience that you can have with someone,” she added. “Whether you go wine tasting or beer tasting or to a dinner or for a hike or a picnic or a beach day or a surprise weekend getaway.”
Culpo, who said she prefers chocolate to flowers, would personally err on the side of wearing something a bit more dressy than keeping it super casual — after all, Valentine’s Day is designed to be a stand out night for couples, so you should treat it like one by wearing something a bit more special.
“I personally prefer to get a little dressed up. Weirdly enough, for other holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving, I almost prefer to be casual, but something about Valentine’s Day makes me want to dress up for it,” she explained. “Even if you’re just going out with your friends, it’s about loving yourself and being with people you love in your life and celebrating you as much as others. It always makes me feel nice when I dress up and am not just wearing sweatpants.”
If your plans for Valentine’s Day involves a romantic dinner date, Culpo shared the essential items that you should keep in your purse for your date night out: “Gum or some sort of mint, because you might get close to someone you love. I always travel with a pressed powder, a lip liner and a lip gloss. So definitely those three things, and then a little bit of cash, just in case. If you’re going to a nice dinner, I always forget cash to tip a valet or something, and it’s just good date etiquette — someone should have cash!”
Not everyone’s Valentine’s Day will be spent with their S.O., which is something that Culpo likely knows a lot about, considering how busy her schedule is. If that’s the case for you this year, though, Culpo doesn’t think that that’s a good enough excuse not to celebrate.
“If you’re not in the same place, my No. 1 tip for that would just be to plan ahead. You can send flowers, cupcakes, cookies, a fruit basket — any sort of a gift basket — but the longer you wait, the harder it is to pull it off,” she said. “I definitely think for Valentine’s Day, not being together is no excuse not to do something sweet. Sometimes it won’t arrive if you don’t think ahead!”
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