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Please for the Love of God Stop Buying Heart-Shaped Jewelry for Valentine’s Day

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Five heart pendant necklaces on a pink background

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Hi there ladies, quick poll: Do you have any heart jewelry laying around? I say “laying around” because I’m willing to bet that if you do own something — a $29.99 heart-shaped pendant on a chain, perhaps — you aren’t wearing it.

That’s because, to put it bluntly, most heart-shaped jewelry isn’t cute. Sorry if I’m offending anyone here, but it’s the unfortunate truth. It’s generally terrible. At worst it makes the wearer look like she’s playing Pretty Pretty Princess, and at best it screams “I didn’t pick this out for myself!”

Which leads me to something else about your heart necklace that I’d put money on: You didn’t pick it out for yourself. It was a gift given to you by your grandma, or more likely by a man — a clueless man who has been tricked into thinking all women like heart jewelry, thanks to the sheer volume of saccharine, pandering ads run by Zales, Kay, and Jared around Valentine’s Day.

Despite what Jane Seymour would have you think, there are many of us that don’t like heart-shaped tokens of affection. I’ve got three heart pendant necklaces, all given to me by well-meaning boys, and all of which have been buried in a drawer for the past decade. A friend told me she was given two in elementary school, and she still suspects to this day that they were stolen from the boys’ mothers. (Honestly, I doubt they minded.)

As a gift, a piece of heart jewelry is a total and complete cop-out. Can you think of anything less personal and more cheesy at the same time? It’s a shallow expression of intimacy and love that doesn’t bother to consider what the giftee actually likes, unless she happens to be part of the small cadre of adult women who are actually super into heart pendants.

Just in case you think I’m a scorned lover, I promise that this is not a rage against a dumb boy for buying me ugly heart jewelry. Nope, it’s a PSA. It’s an open letter to try and save a few clueless bros from embarrassment, and a few would-be owners of heart necklaces the awkwardness of having to pretend you like something that you just really, really don’t.

It’s also an appeal to Zales to PLEASE, STOP TELLING PEOPLE WE LIKE THOSE HORRIBLE “INFINITY” HEART PENDANTS, and a plea to Kay to just cut it out. Do you really need to make over a thousand varieties? Did you have to add angel wings, too? (It’s not just the mall brands, either. You’re an offender too, Tiffany. David Yurman, we see you.)

If you really want to buy jewelry for your significant other, I suggest waiting until V-Day passes — because come on, it’s the heart-shaped pendant of greeting card holidays — and buying her something legitimately cool that fits her aesthetic.

And should you need suggestions, we’ve got you so freaking covered.