Exclusive: Actress La La Anthony Dishes On How To Be An Awesome Gift Giver (AND Get Cash Back)

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November 22, 2011

Yesterday I had a little chat with the lovely La La Anthony about conquering the holiday shopping. She’s a busy girl: not only is she an actress and VH1 reality star in her own right–she just wrapped Love, Loss and What I Wore, she’s also NBA star Carmelo Anthony’s wife and a mother to four year old Kiyan.  Oh yeah, and her BFFs are Kim Kardashian, Kelly Rowland and Serena Williams. Talk about an imposing holiday gift list! Here, she shares her best gift-giving secrets for the tricky guys in your life (no matter what your relationship stage) and a cool new way to get cash back on the stuff you’re already buying–all without hardly lifting a finger.

Being in the spotlight doesn’t mean the holidays are all about Louboutins and BMWs.

To La La, it’s all about super thoughtful gifts and using Shop.com/lala to do it all, where you can get cash back – yep, free money – on stuff you were already going to buy.

Her friends Loren & J.R. Ridinger who started the company recently brought her in to be a part of the project.

SHEfinds: You’re a popular girl. How do you handle all the people on your list?

LaLa: Well, with the economy and the way things are going and people  are really trying to save money, I’m a huge proponent of Shop.com. It’s a great way to still do shopping and I have my own group of friends and I’m telling everyone to sign up. When you use my page, Shop.com/Lala, you get my curated set of savings and gifts. Then after that, you can go to the rest of the site and shop everything. Then you can refer your own friends and get even more credit off of that. If someone only gets $50 to $100 cash back, it really makes a huge difference–and then they can get other gifts with it.

SHEfinds: You’re like a fun girlfriend that knows how to deal with any situation. Let’s talk about gifts for guys. In the past, you’ve said that Carmelo is a shoe hoarder. How do you know what to get for your guy?

LaLa: (Laughs) You have to know their personality. For me, Carmelo loves sneakers and clothes, but those are things that can get dirty and worn out, and they get discarded eventually. So I try to touch on something personal like a framed photo of you on a vacation, or a sterling silver bracelet engraved with a one-liner that’s an inside joke.

SHEfinds: What was the best gift you’ve ever given?

LaLa: My husband’s father passed when he was really young, and I had a street artist draw a picture of  him, with his father in the background. It’s a touching gift and he’ll always remember it, even though it didn’t cost a lot.

SHEfinds: What do you get a guy if you’re in a long-distance relationship?

LaLa: Melo & I were in one for a very long time. There’s no better gift than a plane ticket to see each other, or a delivery. My close friend (and wedding planner) Mindy Weiss told me about a company that drops off chocolate chip cookies and milk. These are cool things that you don’t have to spend a lot on for it to mean a lot.

SHEfinds: What if you want to make over your guy without offending him?

LaLa: I think the best thing is to say “Hey, just try this, I think you would look really hot in this.” There are ways to suggest things without being obnoxious.

SHEfinds: And if you just started dating–what do you give without scaring him off?

LaLa: It depends on how much you want to spend, but there are a lot of cool things you could do – maybe get one of those iPod Nanos and fill it up with music that they like.

SHEfinds: You have some really awesome BFFs. What do you get the girls?

LaLa: They stump me the most. Go back to the sentimental. Right now I’m looking at a picture frame in my house, it has Serena Williams, Kelly Rowland and Kim Kardashian and me. Kim gave it t me one year. I would never have framed that picture of us, but now it’s sitting in my living room and it looks great. What is a frame going to cost you to go get a picture printed up? Most people nowadays aren’t framing a digital picture–so it makes a big statement.

SHEfinds: What will you get the NBA wives?

LaLa: Sometimes what’s cool is a spa treatment–they’ll always be able to use and they’ll look forward to it. Or just a manicure or pedicure. To get a free one you’d appreciate more than some clothes you get.

SHEfinds: What are you going to get Kim?

Lala: It”ll be in that thoughtful place. It won’t be a Balenciaga bag. It’ll be a picture of us that she hasn’t seen, or when you find old pictures like I found one of me and Kelly when we were 20. It’s a throwback kind of photo.

SHEfinds: Black Friday is coming up–are you going to shop?

LaLa: It’s so funny– I am and I’m not. I go online now more. I used to go with aunts and uncles and all of my family at 3am,  and wait in line all night long. My cousins still do that. But now I hope online–and what’s great about Shop.com But now you can find so many great things online, so that’s what I do. There are also tons of Shop.com special deals and coupons. The other day they had a 30% off Gap discount–that’s a big discount!

So there you have it: thoughtful gifts that don’t take a lot of money are really key, no matter what your wallet looks like. If you haven’t used Shop.com already, you should totally try it: it doesn’t just last during the holidays–once you sign up, you can use it every day. Sign up for Lala’s page here.

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