After your special someone proposes, your first inclination might be to place the ring on your left hand's fourth finger. It's commonly referred to as your "ring finger" because it's a popular location for wearing an engagement ring and wedding ring. If you've been confused about which finger to put a wedding ring on, you've reached the right place. It's unnecessary to wear your wedding ring on your left finger, even though most people in the United States and elsewhere do. Indeed, the meaning and tradition of the wedding ring finger are steeped in history, and it varies significantly across cultures.
So, which wedding ring finger and hand should you use? Here is a breakdown of all you should know about wearing your engagement, wedding, or promise ring.
Good news for those who aren't sure already: as with so many other aspects of wedding planning, you can choose which hand you wear your rings on. Most couples wear the wedding rings on the left hand on their fourth finger, indicating the "vein of love" symbolism.
However, if you prefer to wear your engagement ring on one finger and your wedding ring on another, you can wear both rings separately—instead of stacking them on the other. While there is no "correct" wedding ring finger, we'll go over some of the main considerations that lead to left-hand wedding ring selection.
The tradition of adorning a wedding ring on your left hand's 4th finger goes back centuries. According to Kristen Lawler-Trustey, a spokeswoman for jewelry brand Forevermark, the ancient Romans believed this finger contained a vein that connected directly to the heart, known as the Vena Amoris, or "Vein of Love." Thus, all couples must wear rings on this finger to symbolize their love and devotion.
Although we now know there is no such vein (though we still love the story! ), the tradition is widely practiced in the United States. However, in some countries where brides and grooms prefer to wear their rings on the ring finger of their right hand, such as Russia, Greece, and Colombia.
Throughout history, wedding rings have been a sweet symbol of eternal love. "The tradition of wedding rings began around 4,800 years ago in Egypt. The circle represents eternity, as it has no beginning or end. Most people don't realize that the hollow ring represents more than just a gap, a hole, or a space—it's a gateway or door. Giving someone a ring represents eternal love.
After pronouncing their vows, couples exchange rings, placing the ring on each other's wedding ring finger. However, choosing which hand to wear the wedding ring is entirely up to you. Traditions are excellent, but etiquette rules have loosened over time.
No rules state that your wedding rings must be made of the same metal or match. Some couples inscribe their wedding date or a romantic phrase in their bands.
Recently, engagement rings have emerged as a cultural norm. There are multiple reasons why his engagement ring selection became popular. For ages, diamonds have stood as the unmistakable emblem of a couple's undying devotion to one another. Since diamonds are the hardest and longest-lasting naturally occurring substance, they are the perfect symbol of undying love and the promise of a lifetime together. As if that weren't enough, every single diamond in existence is also completely unique. Just as no two love stories are the same, no two diamonds are the same.
The custom of donning an engagement ring on the non-dominant hand (the left) is by no means universal. Right-hand ring wear is customary for engagements in Russia, Germany, Norway, and India. This comes from the Latin sinister meaning of the word "left." Therefore, some people avoided using their left hand for fear of bad luck.
The promise ring is a custom with roots in the 1600s that has been misunderstood ever since its original meaning changed from a promise of engagement to a promise of marriage. Now, obviously, this isn't always the case, as some couples might not be prepared for impending marriage but would still like to demonstrate their commitment in some way. In modern times, a promise ring can signify a variety of things depending on the couple, but it is most often a sign of commitment to one another and/or love. It is a time-honored custom for newly committed couples to exchange promise rings as a token of their undying love and devotion to one another.
Since this isn't a legal engagement, some couples choose a different finger than the fourth one on the left hand, which is traditionally used for engagement and wedding rings. It is customary to switch from wearing a promise ring on the left hand to the right hand after getting married
Can I wear my wedding and engagement rings on opposite hands?
Absolutely! The decision is frequently influenced by personal or cultural preferences. Some women prefer to wear their wedding ring on the left finger and their engagement ring on the right. Whether you want to keep a time-honored tradition or start your own is entirely up to you.
How do I measure the size of my ring finger?
Sizing a ring finger involves a surprising number of considerations. You should also think about your daily routine and the ring's aesthetic before making a final decision. Your finger could swell from physical exertion or long trips, so keep that in mind if you engage in these activities frequently. The weather also plays a role, as warm temperatures can cause swelling in the hands and fingers. In contrast, cold temperatures have the opposite effect, making summer the best time to avoid swollen fingers. Thicker bands typically have a more snug fit, so width also plays a role in determining size.
To get the most accurate measurements, take them when you're at rest and not too hot or too cold (fingers may swell overnight or after eating), preferably in the middle of the day. Ring guards or beads can accommodate minute changes in finger size. Visit the jewelry store and get your size measured by a professional.
Can I wear rings on my ring finger before getting married?
According to an old wives' tale, wearing a non-committal ring on your left finger brings bad luck. Not a believer in superstitions? Wearing a ring on that finger, however, may signal to others that you are in a committed relationship, which may not be ideal if you are out on the dating scene.
Can I wear rings all the time?
Even though it's tempting to keep those rings on your finger at all times (read: something else to think about), you should protect them from being scratched, harmed, or disfigured. Take off your rings before cleaning (especially if you're using chemicals), working out, playing sports, or going to sleep. Removing your rings at night protects them, prevents swelling, and prevents hurting your spouse.
We are sure this blog has answered all your questions, like where do the engagement and the wedding rings go? Now that you know that the placement of a wedding ring and engagement ring varies worldwide, you can take the call and do what suits you best without thinking about what others might think. To follow the tradition or to make your own is your choice. Continue reading BridalFusion.com for more insights and inspirations on anything related to weddings!