Of all the jewelry that women wear, the piece that depends most heavily on correct sizing is a ring. While it’s possible for items like bracelets or necklaces to become “stuck,” they generally stay in place and can be easily removed when desired. Rings, on the other hand, must be the correct size and fit, or the wearer may experience discomfort that distracts from their beautiful appearance.
Not sure how to find your ring size? It starts with knowing your band size. While fashion items like clothes and shoes can vary considerably even when they’re the “same size”, ring band sizing is uniform. Thankfully, it’s easy to determine your ring size with a few tips and tricks, so you can feel equipped with the knowledge to find a perfect fit for any ring - from engagement rings to right-hand rings and ornate simulated lab created diamonds to simple metals.
How to Measure Women’s Ring Sizes
To help determine your ring size, there are a few easy methods to get you started:
If you have a ring that fits you well: Bring your ring to a local jeweler and ask to have it sized. Any reputable jeweler should be able to use a mandrel - a slender graduated cone on a handle with sizing marks – or another gauging tool to quickly and easily tell you what size band you’re currently wearing. There are also printable charts available online that allow you to lay your ring on top of sizing silhouettes to narrow down the correct size – if you use this method, make sure your sizing chart is set to print at the correct proportions.
If you don’t have a ring handy: The most straightforward and accurate way to determine your ring size is, of course, to ask a jeweler to size you in person. If you’d rather take a DIY approach, use ribbon, string, or even dental floss, and wrap it around your finger. Note where the ends meet with a pen mark and then measure the length. Take care not to pull or stretch the cord you’re using, as this will affect the accuracy of your results. Perform this test a few times with fresh cord or string each time, as this will help you find the average.
After you’ve made the measurements, you can quickly locate a conversion chart online that will tell you what your measurement “translates” to in terms of ring size. If you’d like to purchase sizing tools for better accuracy, there are also small belt-like loop measurement tools, sets of small plastic rings in graduated sizes, and mandrels available inexpensively online.
Women’s Ring Sizes: Issues With Ring Sizing Accuracy
Historically, wedding rings rose to popularity because the ring finger was thought to contain a vein that traveled straight to the heart. The wisdom of wedding rings imagined that symbolic jewelry placed on this finger echoed the love the wearer felt in their heart. Biology aside, these beliefs did get one thing right – there is a great deal of blood flow in your fingers. That means that everything from hot weather to water retention, or from medical issues to new medication can affect the girth of your finger and knuckle.
In order to prevent sizing mishaps, be sure to measure your ring size at various times of the day, as well as after exercising or a stint of hard physical work. Depending on how drastically your ring size fluctuates, you may want to size up or down to ensure a comfortable, even fit throughout your daily activities and local weather patterns. Additionally, if your knuckles are larger than average, be sure to size up a half size to allow your new ring to slide on easily.
If you don’t typically wear a ring every day, it might also be a good idea to wear a plain ring for a few weeks to make sure you’ll be used to the weight and feel of it. That way, when it comes time to slip on a beautiful engagement ring or wedding band, you’ll be ready to show it off with pride, and work efficiently without needing to adjust it constantly.
Women’s Ring Size Guide: Band Size is Only the First Step
While many jewelry enthusiasts tend to think of ring sizing as a single number, there are a number of other considerations that should also be weighed in tandem. Since a ring is a piece of jewelry that you wear every day, it’s worth doing some research to learn how various factors of design can impact the fit. Here are some basic ring-sizing rules to consider when shopping for an engagement ring or wedding band:
- Band Width. Ring sizing is based on the left-to-right measurement of the inside of the band, but width captures the front-to-back measurement of the ring when it’s on a finger. If your band is too slender, a stone setting at the top has the potential to slump forward or back, subjecting the setting prongs to stress and less-than-optimal display. If the band is too wide, it may be uncomfortable, particularly if your job or hobbies require you to be active with your hands.
- Band Height. The measurement of the top-to-bottom of a ring covers how high the stone at the top of your ring sits. A shorter ring height is best for individuals that work with their hands, as this minimizes the chances the stone will bump up against objects or machinery and become damaged.
- Style Considerations. Ring fitting is most commonly defined as physical, but a great ring will also be a perfect fit with your personal style. Shop with an eye toward styles that match rings you already own; this will help you find a ring that will sit well on your finger and with your personal style.
Dropping Hints About Your Ring Size
Your partner wants to buy the perfect ring for you – an exquisite band, the precious metal color they know you love, a sparkling Nexus Diamond™ alternative as the crowning accent. There’s just one small problem – they have no idea what your ring size is. Here are a few subtle ways to make sure they have the reconnaissance information they need to get you the perfect ring – whether it’s an accent or the one that accompanies the big question.
- Make sure they have access to a ring they know fits you well: This is one of the most common tactics that jewelers suggest when surprising someone with a ring when the wearer’s size is unknown. If your partner can safely “borrow” your well-fitted ring behind your back, they’ll be able to secretly determine your size and gift a ring that fits perfectly.
- Make sure your friends know: If borrowing a ring isn’t an option for finding your size, your partner will turn to those who know you best: your friends and family. Make sure that your social group is familiar with your ring size if it seems like your partner might be snooping around for it. Offer to memorize their ring sizes in return and proactively hint to their partners.
- Leave a browser tab open: The old joke about leaving engagement ring flyers out on the coffee table to hint at readiness still works with modern technology. Open a browser tab on your cell phone and put an everyday ring or two in your size in your shopping cart. Disappear for a while (leaving your phone out, of course) and let curiosity take its natural course.
- Be transparent about sizes – all of them: If you don’t anticipate your weight or sizes fluctuating a great deal throughout the year, making a list for one another can be helpful for gift-giving occasions. Knowing shirt, pant, ring, dress, and shoe sizes for one another can make shopping for occasions like birthdays, Valentine’s Day, and winter holidays considerably easier. It’s a win-win technique that slyly ensures your partner has the info they need to buy you the perfect ring.
What Do I Do If My Ring Doesn’t Fit?
So you’ve been given a gorgeous ring, a stunning design that you can’t wait to show off to friends, family and coworkers – the only problem is, it doesn’t fit! Either the band is too tight to slip over your knuckle without wedging uncomfortably, or you’re worried an errant hand gesture will send it flying off. What do you do now?
Don’t give up on your dream of showing off your new, sparkling treasure – here are some things to keep in mind about a ring with a bad fit:
- Have you only tried it on once? Your water retention and blood flow naturally fluctuate during the day, and your ring size will be very different when you’re overheated or just after exercising. If you’ve recently been swimming, this may also swell your fingers - so dry off, take some deep breaths, and relax for a few minutes before trying again.
- Is it falling off, but just barely? Adjusting ring sizes is much easier to do up the scale than down – shrinking a band generally involves cutting and rejoining it. Instead of taking that route, consider using a ring snuggler – a small piece of tubing that shores up the gap between band and finger. They’re comfortable and designed to be worn during everyday activities to keep your ring secure.
- Is it stuck on your finger and won’t come off? The trick is to reduce the swelling that’s holding the ring in place – this is particularly true if you’ve been pulling on the ring or applying force. Use an ice pack or cold compress on your finger and hold your hand above your head for a minute or two before trying again. Unless the finger is numb or discolored, you likely won’t need medical attention, it’s simply a matter of waiting out the swelling.
Ring resizing is a permanent solution to what may be a temporary issue, so be sure your ring genuinely needs to be resized before committing to it. For commitment jewelry like engagement and wedding rings, fine jewelry manufacturers will often offer a complimentary resizing, either once after purchase or periodically. At Diamond Nexus, we offer free resizing for all new gold and platinum engagement rings and wedding bands within the first year to help ensure your new purchase fits perfectly. If your ring’s fit changes due to pregnancy, most jewelry experts agree that it’s better to remove uncomfortable rings for the duration of pregnancy, as swelling is likely to increase the further along you are. Sentimental or commitment rings can be strung on a necklace to wear until your fingers return to natural size after the birth.
If Your Ring Does Need To Be Resized
If resizing is a must to get a perfect fit, why not take advantage of the situation to customize your ring further? While your ring is being resized, look into these alterations and upgrades to make your ring a creation that’s all your own:
- Engraving: whether it’s the initials of your partner, a special meaningful quote, or a loving nickname, engraving usually won’t add a lot of time to your repair. In addition to adding more sentiment to your ring, this customization also makes it easy to find and describe if it ever becomes misplaced.
- Additional Stones: Upgrading your ring with additional faceted stones is a little trickier than a simple engraving, but alterations are the best time to make this happen. Discuss the possibilities with your jeweler, as you may be able to secure a larger center stone or flanking stones at a price that fits your budget.
- Cleaning: Dirt, dust, skin oils, and debris all interfere with the beautiful play of light inside the facets of a natural diamond. Don’t let life literally dull your sparkle – ask your adjustment professional to clean your ring if it’s not already a part of service. Jewelry stores have cleaning methods that remove more dirt and oil than DIY or home jewelry cleaning solutions. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the sparkling difference a deeply-cleaned ring will show.
The key to ring sizes for women isn’t as complicated as most may think. There are easy tips and tricks to determining the proper ring size and effective methods to alter the size if necessary at any point. Follow an easy ring size guide to help you find the perfect new ring and adorn your finger with sparkling brilliance!
Here at Diamond Nexus, we strive to provide valuable information while being clear and honest about our products. The Nexus Diamond™ alternative is a patented lab created diamond simulate that, among all simulants, most closely imitates the look, weight and wear of a diamond, with two exceptions - it is absolutely perfect in every way, and it costs significantly less. Price points and environmental facts expressed in this blog were taken from popular online retailers and may vary. Learn more about the environmental impact of mining by visiting our blog.
1 Fisher, Claudia. “A Guide for How to Measure Your Ring Size at Home.”RealSimple.com, September 26, 2018, https://www.realsimple.com/beauty-fashion/shoes-accessories/jewelry/how-to-measure-ring-size. Accessed July 14, 2019.
2 “How to Determine Ring Size.” Overstock.com, (no publish date), https://www.overstock.com/guides/best-tips-to-find-your-ring-size. Accessed July 14, 2019.
3 “Ring Size Conversion Chart: International Ring Sizes.” 25karats.com, (no publish date), https://www.25karats.com/education/jewelry/ring_size_chart. Accessed July 14, 2019.