What is the right Engagement Ring & Wedding Band hand?

What is the right Engagement Ring & Wedding Band hand?

Traditions & Tales of Which Ring Goes Where

For those who’ve fantasised about their perfect proposal and dream wedding before even meeting their partner, knowing the right engagement ring finger and wedding band hand is common knowledge. But for the uninitiated hopefuls and newly engaged Ring Rookies, here’s the 101 on which digit to flaunt your new bling.

First thing’s first: What hand does the engagement ring go on?

Before getting married, most people are engaged. This romantic engagement or proposal (indicating a desire to get married) traditionally begins when someone drops a knee, produces a fancy diamond engagement ring and asks their partner to marry them. 
If your answer is “YES”, go right ahead and pop that shiny solitaire engagement ring straight onto the fourth finger of your left hand like below, snap a selfie and apply the hashtag #SHmoments.

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Do men wear engagement rings?

In Western culture, it is not common practice for heterosexual males to wear a men’s engagement ring on their engagement ring finger indicating their intention to marry.

Some male celebrities, however - most notably Ed Sheeran, Michael Buble and Johnny Depp - chose to wear ‘man-gagement rings’, paving a path for other metrosexual gents to follow.

Although Ed Sheeran’s engagement ring may have been a wedding ring lookalike decoy and Johnny Depp’s engagement ring was actually designed for Amber Heard (but he failed to find her ring size and ended up wearing it on his engagement ring finger), man-gagement rings have gained traction over the years as couples are becoming increasingly passionate about equality...

Why wouldn’t both people in a relationship want to publicly announce and affirm their commitment to each other, after all?

 

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In Chile, Argentina and Brazil it is common for both men and women to wear engagement rings on their right hand before the wedding, then move them over to their left hand once they’ve tied the knot.

Other instances men might wear an engagement ring is when a woman proposes (following in the footsteps of Elizabeth Taylor, Kristen Bell, Pink, Judge Judy and Jennifer Hudson - way to go, girls!) or in a gay male relationship, where one or both men choose to wear an engmagent ring in the lead up to their wedding.

Men’s engagement rings with diamonds are a popular choice (like traditional women’s engagement rings), and the subsequent wedding band is often a more simplistic plain gold wedding band that can be worn together with the engagement ring, or on the other hand.

Next comes nuptials: what hand is a wedding ring worn on?

When you’re finally ready to seal the deal and get married, a traditional ceremony involves exchanging wedding rings after you and your partner have said your vows in the presence of the celebrant and guests.

Some women like to swap their engagement ring to their right hand for the ceremony to allow for a smooth delivery of the wedding band, which also sits on the engagement ring finger of your left hand - this is tradition for both women and men.
Once the woman’s wedding band has been fitted during the ceremony, the engagement ring can be returned to the left hand to sit in front of the wedding band, so the wedding band remains closest to your heart at the base of your finger.
Photograph by: @blissfuldreams_au https://www.instagram.com/blissfuldreams_au/
Wedding rings are traditionally plain gold wedding bands for men and commonly diamond eternity rings for women, and can be chosen as a matching pair with identical metal and design, or different designs that reflect each partner’s personal style.

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If you are planning to wear gloves on your wedding day, be sure to remove the left wedding ring finger glove to receive your wedding band. Wearing your rings on top of your glove can make them difficult to remove, and easy to lose if not fitted correctly.

 

Why is the engagement ring finger and wedding ring finger on the left hand?

Ancient Romans are to thank for this tradition that’s still widely followed in Western culture. They believed the engagement ring finger had a vein that ran directly to the heart, known as the ‘vein of love’, or Vena Amoris. Romantic as it is, unfortunately no such vein exists, but the tradition remains strong today.

 Photograph by: @blissfuldreams_au https://www.instagram.com/blissfuldreams_au/

Are there exceptions to this engagement & wedding ring finger rule?


Of course! Women with particularly active lifestyles or hands-on jobs may choose to wear only a plain wedding band or wedding band with diamonds that are well protected in a flat channel setting, and reserve their more elevated diamond engagement ring for special occasions.

 

 
Similarly, men’s wedding bands can be worn on a necklace beneath their shirt where it remains close to the heart, but well protected from bumps and scratches caused by tools and machinery. Left-handed people may also choose to wear their wedding band on a necklace, or switch it to their right hand to reduce the likelihood of scratches and bumps while working with machinery.
Men's satin finish channel set diamond wedding band (6.2mm)Men's satin finish three stone diamond wedding band (5.2mm) (TT)Men's square formed satin finish wedding band (6mm)

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Another scenario for changing your engagement ring finger or wedding ring finger is weight gain or weight loss post-wedding that causes your rings to no longer fit your ring finger. In this event, you may need to temporarily change the finger or store your rings safely at home until you have an opportunity to resize your engagement ring and wedding band.

Wed Your Own Way - You Do You!

Ultimately, there are no hard and fast rules about which engagement ring finger or wedding ring finger you and your partner choose to display your new bling.

Whether you opt for traditional engagement ring etiquette and wedding band placement, or experiment with ring stacking two identical bands on either side of your engagement ring, the symbolism of the rings remains the same: two people committed to each other for eternity, together forever no matter the weather.

18kt Rose Gold Pavé Set Black Diamond Women's Wedding Band (2.2mm) 

 

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Ask The Melbourne Engagement Rings Experts

If you need help finding your dream engagement ring or selecting a wedding band that beautifully complements your engagement ring, our Melbourne jewellery store in the heart of Springvale is open all weekend for your convenience.

Our Diamond & Jewellery Specialists have helped over 10,000 couples say “I do”, earning us the title of Australia's best Google reviewed jeweller with over 1,740 5-star reviews.

Book an appointment in store or shop Melbourne engagement rings online with our 30-day returns and money back guarantee.