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Valentine’s or Valentines: Learn Which is Correct

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You’re expressing your love for someone on Valentine’s Day and want to ensure it’s perfect. That starts with getting the spelling right. Below, we’ll cover the nuances of “Valentine,” “Valentines,” and “Valentine’s” to help you flawlessly craft your message for this special day of love.

White text over gradient red background reads "How To Spell Valentine's Day."
We’ll help you get your Valentine’s Day message just right!
Quick Summary

The correct spelling of the holiday is Valentine’s Day.

  • Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine refers to a “card you give to someone on Valentine’s Day,” but it can also mean “sweetheart or loved one you give a card or gift to.” In this sense, Valentine can be made plural by adding an “s.”

  • He asked me to be his valentine.
  • I passed out many valentines this year.

Are you puzzled over the correct spelling and proper use of Valentine, Valentines, and Valentine’s? Don’t let these variations make your heart skip a beat with worry! We’re here to clarify the confusion by teaching you when to use each term. Plus, we have an extra sweet treat for you as we demonstrate a simple way to always view spelling challenges through rose-colored glasses. 

Let’s begin this linguistic journey of love!

How Do You Spell Valentine’s—Is an Apostrophe Needed?

When sending someone well wishes on this holiday, the correct spelling is Happy Valentine’s Day.

The use of the apostrophe is key, and here’s why: Valentine’s Day—although now typically recognized as a commercial holiday that celebrates love and romance—was originally a Christian feast day that honored a martyr named Valentine. The possessive apostrophe is required because the day is dedicated to Saint Valentine, hence Valentine’s Day.

Happy Valentine Day!

Happy Valentines Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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When To Use “Valentine”

However, you should know that there is a time and place for valentine (spelled without the apostrophe + “s”).

Valentine is a noun that carries a few different meanings. It can refer to a card given to someone you love, sometimes anonymously. In the United States, it is customary for young children to pass out valentines to all their friends. 

I got a valentine, and I think it was from Jack. 
I make sure to send my niece a valentine every year. 
One year, I didn’t get a single valentine at school, but when I got home, I had a bouquet of flowers waiting for me.

It’s also common to refer to these cards as Valentine’s Day cards.

We’re going to the store to buy some Valentine’s Day cards.

Valentine also means “a special someone or chosen sweetheart that you compliment or send a card or gift on Valentine’s Day.

Ellie will be my valentine for the rest of my life.
He asked me to be his valentine, and I said yes.
Although I was shy, I asked Jessica if she wanted to be my valentine.

So, when someone says, “Will you be my valentine?,” they’re asking if you’d like to be their beloved or darling on this special day. 

Correct Capitalization

Please note that when using valentine to refer to a card or sweetheart, the first letter is not typically capitalized (unless at the start of a sentence). However, the “V” in valentine and the “D” in day do need to be capitalized when referring to the holiday, since it’s a proper noun.

  • I will ask Emiliana to be my valentine.
  • I hope you have a happy Valentine’s Day.

Red heart reads "be my" and a pink heart reads "valentine."
“Valentine” is another way to say “sweetheart,” but is usually only used during the holiday.

When To Use “Valentines” 

It’s important to note that valentine becomes plural by adding an “-s” to the end of the word. For example, if you’re feeling extra loving and want to give everyone in your office a card, you’re handing out multiple valentines. 

  • We’ve made it a tradition to give the senior residents valentines to help them remember they are loved. 
  • I was flattered when I received three valentines this year. 
  • My husband always makes sure to get all of our kids valentines

You can also have multiple valentines, or sweethearts, that you spoil and show your love to on Valentine’s Day, although we wouldn’t recommend it if you want to keep the peace. 

  • My little brother came home one year and said he had five valentines
  • My best friends competed to see who would have the most valentines by the end of the day. 
  • I told my children that all four of them were my valentines
Graphic shoes what appear to be scattered Valentine's letters in envelopes.
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How To Write a Loving Message for Valentine’s Day

Remember, when you’re using Valentine’s as a greeting, the correct spelling is:

  • Happy Valentine’s Day

When you’re referring to a singular card or loved one, it’s:

  • Valentine

But if you’re referring to multiple cards or sweethearts, pluralize the noun by adding an “s” (no apostrophe is needed). 

  • Valentines

Now that you have strong foundational knowledge of the correct spelling for this love-struck holiday, make sure you get the Valentine’s Day cards and love letters just right with LanguageTool! As your personal writing assistant, LanguageTool ensures you express your affectionate sentiments clearly, effectively, and lovingly!

Try it today and write your way into love with LanguageTool.

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