Romantic & Sexy Holiday Gift Guide (2021)
Haven’t gotten around to getting your other half their gift yet? Me neither.
With this year’s supply chain delays and longer-than-usual shipping turnarounds, many businesses have been asking customers to place their holiday gift orders, well, yesterday. No wonder many are feeling the holiday pressure and heat (and not the sexy kind!).
But alas! We at Gilly take pride in helping you reduce mental load and effort by doing the thinking for you — so that you can spend those precious moments on yourself & your relationship instead.
For this season’s holiday madness, we’ve put together a gift guide to help you find something that says to your partner, “Hey, thank you for 2021. I love you and I love us.”
This guide covers both naughty and nice gifts. There are also digital gifts so if you’re trying to be gift more consciously or are reading this one week before Christmas — we got your back. Where possible, we also featured items from independent businesses so that your money can make a difference for small businesses at the same time.
We hope this guide will help you find something truly wonderful for your other half. And if there is something here that has your name all over it, go ahead, share this with your partner — they will appreciate the help!
Wishing you a wonderful holiday season 🙂
xx, Team Gilly
Romantic & Sexy Holiday Gift Guide (2021)
PS. We are affiliates for some of the brands you see in this guide (you’ll see “affiliate” indicated). This means we receive a small commission when you purchase through the link. It doesn’t cost you extra and it helps us continue working on the Gilly app, as we are currently a team bootstrapping our way! We only work with companies and recommend products that align with our values. Thank you in advance for supporting us by buying through that link.
Gifts for Them
This is a great one if your partner’s love language is Words of Affirmation and this verbal / written expression doesn’t come naturally to you. Jot down whatever you want to say without worrying about its eloquence, and send it to her for the magic to happen. Once you receive it, you can roll it up and tie a ribbon around it, or if you have time, frame it for a completed look.
My partner is the one who does the bulk of the meal planning and cooking in our household. It’s something that I’m truly grateful for, as it relieves me of so much mental load from week to week (our deal is that he can make all the mess in the kitchen and I’ll clean it up). That said, I know it’s a lot for him to take on, especially when work travel is starting to pick up again (yes, he batch cooks and freezes so me and our little ones are still fed while he’s away!).
If your partner’s love language is Acts of Service, providing some relief to this household task will be received with a big smile — even if it’s just one meal a week. And you don’t have to do it alone. Ends+Stems puts together simple, family friendly meal plans complete with a grocery list to help meal planning go smoother for households while also reducing food waste. This gift will take some effort from you, but trust us, it will be greatly appreciated by your partner.
Erotica is a great way to tap into the biggest sex organ — the brain. Dipsea does a great job crafting stories that range from sensual to raw and spicy, without being corny. We include this gift under a gift to them but it is something you can also enjoy together… one of the benefits of airpods 🙂
A perfect gift for the creative soul, this class is intended to be a healing space for reclaiming sexuality and erotic expression through writing. Participants will be given prompts to help connect with their inner pleasure, sexuality, and eroticism. This is a great way to let the mind, body and soul wander and flow.
Is your other half a fan of the Office? Or perhaps they had a childhood soccer or basketball idol growing up? You’d be surprised who you can find on the Cameo platform to record a video with a message just for your boo. A tip: Include as much detail as possible when making your Cameo request. For example:
- How you’d like your partner to be addressed in the video message
- What’s the occasion?
- Is there something specific you want the star to say (A famous tagline? Words of encouragement?)
- What is the main message you want to convey? (This is a great opportunity to share what you are grateful to your partner for)
- Any particular sign off?
How often do you go back and enjoy the videos and photos of your family saved on your phone? Google Photos has a great feature that shows you photos and clips from past years and it’s one of the favourite things my partner and I like to do before bedtime. It brings back so many good memories. Yet, the thought of compiling all of those photos and videos into one family film is just too daunting of a task to even contemplate. Well, there’s someone who can do that for you! Just upload all the clips you want and Isbell Family Films will stitch them together, paired with just the right soundtrack.
This is a time sensitive gift so if you want to get it in time for Christmas, act fast!
Gifts to Enjoy Together
Research shows that novelty itself (anything that introduces something new to a usual routine) can strengthen intimacy in a relationship. In other words, experiencing something new, sexual or not, can enhance connection. So you can’t go wrong with whatever you choose, as long as it feels good for you both!
1. A virtual wine tasting
Create your own private date night at home with a virtual wine tasting. These sessions can range from exclusive sessions from wineries in the Napa Valley to workshops from your local wine shop. Going dry? No problem. Joyus has you covered with delicious alcohol free wines. Order a set and create your own tasting session. They recently won Gold and Bronze at the San Francisco Wine Competition so you may even be able to tell the difference in taste!
Tip: Not sure how to get the house all to yourself? Agree with friends ahead of time to take turns watching each other’s kids. Voila, free babysits.
2. A virtual whiskey tasting from Whiskies of the World
If whiskey is more up your alley, Whiskies of the World will send you a sampler set and a pre-recorded tasting session so that you can drink, pause, restart, as you go. To up your game, include fine chocolates to pair with the whiskies — together, their flavors are enhanced for a sweet, sweet evening.
Order a whiskey sampler set here (Only available in specific states in the US where Adult Beverages advertising and samples are allowed, check the fine print for details)
3. Couples Massage Mastery Course by the Pleasure Mechanics*
With the busy bustle of life, we sometimes don’t get the most out of being together with our partner. When was the last time you slowed down and enjoyed each other’s presence with touch? Learning new ways to touch each other can be a wonderful experience, and the Couples Massage Mastery course by the Pleasure Mechanics presents a well balanced mix of erotic and non-erotic touch. It shows easy to follow techniques for arms, hands, back and legs. As a nice extra, it also includes important lessons on communication and pleasure. With such a great set of choices, you can plan several date nights throughout the year to go through the course together and never get bored!
Dip your toes into pleasure products with this beginner’s set from Dame Products. The Pom is a powerful yet quiet little toy that fits nicely in one’s hand for solo or partnered play. It is small enough that it doesn’t feel intrusive when being used during partnered sex. The set also includes an aloe-water based lube and arousal serum for you to explore different sensations together.
Asking for what you want can be really scary and intimidating, especially when it comes to sex. But as frightening as sharing our desires and fantasies can be, it’s also incredibly hot. In this pre-recorded workshop by Cassandra Corrado, you and your partner will take on common barriers to sexual communication, learn simple ways to embody your dirty talking alter ego, and practice exercises that will show you that communication isn’t as scary as you once thought.
Get 10% off with coupon code: GILLY
Couldn’t decide between toys or erotica? You won’t have to choose with an erotica box from Bawdy Bookworms that pairs the best romance novels with pleasure products to match. They have a box themed especially for the holiday season or you can choose another that suits your fancy. The founder, Thien-Kim Lam, is a romance novel aficionado and author so you’re in good hands!
7. A subscription to ethical p0rn
Not all p0rn is the same. Ethical p0rn is produced with a sex-positive and inclusive lens while also paying their actors fairly. They often provide a wider range of narratives and experiences than mainstream p0rn by removing the objectification of women and taking on a more thoughtful and real approach to sex. Erotic films can be a great addition to foreplay or fantasy play with your partner. We will do a separate post on ethical p0rn and erotica — for now, here is a selection for you to consider! Each production house has its own special sauce and subscription plans:
Make Love Not Porn
MLNP is unique in that their performers are all “real” people. In other words, they are not hired performers but rather everyday people and couples who contribute their sexy videos to the platform. The platform then shares its revenues with its artists. The result is a wide range of authentic, raw and real sexual experiences that can be eye opening and beautiful to witness.
Bellesa aims to capture s*x that is real and authentic by giving their performers a carte blanche to have real, unscripted sex — sex that feels good. Performers are encouraged to communicate with their partner(s) throughout about what feels good and what they like. According to their press release, there are no fake orgasms, ever.
Crashpad Series, as described by Bustle, is “like the fun lesbian bar of p0rn.” While its content centers around queer women, there is something for everyone. If you find mainstream content repetitive and are seeking a fresh take on BDSM, kink, different types of queer sex with a focus on BIPOC, complete with aftercare and check-ins, Crashpad Series may just be your cup of tea!
Curious about kink but not sure where to begin? Kink Academy has a workbook that will walk you and your partner through essential questions to set you on your path of exploration. As you work through these questions together, you will dive deep into topics like role-playing, impact play, figuring out your kinky persona, aftercare and so much more. It’s a great way to get the lay of the kinky land, together.
9. Be one of the first to get access to the Gilly app with your partner
One of the most common questions I’d get asked when I was a practicing sex & relationship counsellor is how to “reignite the spark”, “have more sex again”, or “feel like lovers again”. Relationships go through different seasons and when life gets really busy, it’s normal to fall into a routine of all sorts. And when small kids are in the picture, the time you used to have to connect as a couple greatly diminishes overnight. This is why we’re creating the Gilly app — to make intimacy and desire easy for busy couples.
We comb through the science and work with experts to create bite-sized, interactive exercises that help you and your partner play and explore as lovers.
If this resonates with you, we invite you to beta test the Gilly app with us when it is available in the new year! We would love to have you join us on this journey, as we are building Gilly for you.
Sign up to join our early access list to receive your invite once the app is ready for download.