Photo by tanakawho.

With Singles Appreciation Day just around the corner, you’re no doubt looking to Grist to guide you through it in the greenest way possible. Surveys indicate that over three-quarters of Americans find eco-mindedness an attractive quality in a partner, so if you’re not concerned yet about the PVC in your sex toys or the child slavery that produced your dark chocolate, it’s time to get conscious. Not to worry: We put together a last-minute Whitman’s sampler of our Valentine’s Day advice to make sure that whether you’re in lust, in love, or (happily!) alone, Mother Earth will always be your Valentine.


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First, some truth: Holidays are really just about eating. I personally like to celebrate V-Day on the 15th by hitting up the drugstore for half-priced candy. Classier (and less-single) folks probably prefer something decadent the day of; since nothing shows your devotion more than home cooking, we suggest whipping up a delicious dish from our trove of romantic recipes:

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Ask Umbra

Umbra never lets your eco-worries go unresolved — that includes dispensing wisdom on key V-Day topics like sex and the essential flowers and chocolate. Check out this roundup of Umbra’s research over the years on eco-safe sex toys, DIY gifts and treats, and setting the mood (sustainably).

Sex and dating

If you’re a disaster in the kitchen or stumped for pre-dinner date ideas, check out these suggestions for great green dates (library lovemaking, anyone?). But in case things get hot and heavy, don’t forget to do your safe-sex homework beforehand (nothing says “call me” like a whiskey-flavored condom).

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No hot date lined up? You’re cutting it close for the big day, but there’s always next year: When it comes to finding your perfect green god or goddess, location is everything. (Hint: Try riding mass transit!) And if no one on OK Cupid lives up to your standards of sustainability, you could always try your luck on a dedicated green dating site.

Then again, perhaps you shouldn’t give in to all the red-and-pink-hued peer pressure at all — there’s absolutely nothing wrong with spending Valentine’s Day alone. Think of the benefits: You keep all the fair-trade chocolate and organic vodka to yourself.