For many generations now, wearing your wedding ring is the common ritual practised by almost all societies around the world. If you look through the pages of history, you will find that this concept of wearing the wedding ring has not evolved in recent times. Instead, it has been prevailing for many years.
Things You Should Never Do With Your Wedding Ring On
Boating, river rafting, kayaking, you get the idea. Water activities often involve cold water, which can make your hands contract and shrink a bit. It’s called vasoconstriction (I didn’t know the technical term until now either, so you’re good). When you’re cold, body heat is used to protect your core, so your fingers and other parts of your body don’t get the blood flow they’re used to and shrink a bit. With a bit of water and activity, your ring can slip right off your finger.
There are two obvious reasons for this. One, dirt and soil could easily get in small crevices and damage your ring. Two, you could easily lose your ring without noticing it. Last we checked, lost wedding rings do not have the same beneficial effect on soil than traditional compost has so if you lose your ring while gardening, its just a lose-lose scenario.
Doing the dishes
We’ve all heard horror stories of expensive rings ending up in the garbage disposal. Enough said.
Cleaning with chemicals
Strong chemicals or cleaning products could damage your ring’s appearance, especially for the ladies with diamonds or precious jewels. These products can gunk up your diamond, and even etch coloured gemstones. If you have a flat band, then wearing gloves may suffice to protect your hands and ring, but if you have a diamond or other jewels raised from the ring’s surface, gloves feel awkward.
From basketball to a myriad of other sports, people have lost their fingers while wearing traditional wedding bands. It’s called ring avulsion and 150,000 people per year lose their finger to it. One safe option is to remove your ring while playing sports. Another alternative is a silicone ring which won’t take your finger with it if caught on something.
When you’re at the gym, the last thing you want to worry about is damaging your expensive ring or risking an injury (ring avulsion). Not to mention that you wouldn’t want a 25-pound dumbbell making contact with your stone or band. But then there’s the scenario where you don’t want someone hitting on you, so leaving your ring off could make you feel uncomfortable. In this case, silicone wedding bands may be your best bet.
While using lotions or creams
Lotions and creams may cause unwanted buildup, dull the appearance of, or damage your wedding ring.
Baking or working with sticky foods
Dough, syrups, you get the idea. Sticky foods and wedding bands don’t go well together. Much like gardening, the residue can get stuck in crevices or potentially harm precious stones.
When you work in an industry that requires you to work a lot with your hands or operate machinery, such as construction, woodworking, electrical work, etc., it’s wise to remove your wedding ring or replace it with something non-conductive.
No, this is not a joke. There have been many instances where sleeping with a wedding ring on has caused the injury. This scenario affects women more than men, usually because of the size and shape of their rings. Sleeping with your ring isn’t a good idea because it increases the chances of it getting caught in your hair, on bedding and waking up with scratches some more painful or visible than others.
Tips on How to Wear Your Engagement and Wedding Ring
Rings on the Left Hand
Perhaps the most common way to wear them, this tradition stems back to an idea from the Ancient Egyptians, who believed we had a vein leading directly from the left ring finger to the heart. By wearing your wedding ring on the inside, you guarantee it’s as close to your heart as possible. This left-handed ring wearing custom is popular in certain regions, such as the United States, France, the UK, Canada, Mexico, South Africa and many Asian countries.
Rings on the Right Hand
How to wear a wedding band may be determined by the area you are living in or the cultural traditions you are accustomed to. While wearing your rings on your left hand is common in many Western countries, you will see many couples wearing their rings on their right hands in Northern and Eastern European countries, such as Russia, Poland and Denmark. It is also common in India, Greece, Spain and Portugal. What’s more, in some countries, like Brazil, couples will wear their wedding rings on one hand and switch hands after saying their vows at their wedding.
Wedding Ring First, Engagement Ring on Top
Some people like to stack their wedding band and engagement ring on the same finger. In this case, you wear your wedding ring first, followed by your engagement ring. So how do you wear your engagement ring and wedding band at your wedding? If you go this route, remove your engagement ring before the ceremony so that you don’t have to deal with potentially losing it or awkwardly fumbling with it at the altar. Wear it on your right hand or keep it in a very safe place. Once you’ve said “I do,” you can slip your sparkler back on for the reception or wait a little bit to admire your new band on its own.
Engagement Ring First, Wedding Ring on Top
Another popular choice is to wear them another way around. Logically it might make sense to wear your rings in the order you received them (even though Ratajkowski got her engagement ring second and still wears them in this order). Symbolically, the idea that your engagement represents a promise and your wedding ring crystallizes that promise might speak to you. Wearing your wedding ring on the outside gives your engagement story a sort of figurative bookend—first, you’re engaged, now it’s official—time to start stacking with anniversary rings (wink!).
Engagement Ring One On Finger, Wedding Ring on the Other
If you’re wondering how to wear a wedding band, this is one prime option if your band doesn’t match your engagement ring. Some prefer wearing their engagement ring on their left ring finger and their wedding band on their right ring finger. Though not a traditional choice, it’s great for those who don’t have a matching set or don’t like the way the rings sit together on one finger. It’s also perfect for those who prefer not to stack more than one ring on a finger. Aside from personal preference, you will often see couples wearing their engagement rings on the right hand and their wedding bands on their left in countries such as Germany and the Netherlands.
When it comes to how to wear wedding rings, there are no rules. No one ever said you have to wear them at the same time. Some like to wear their wedding bands every day and reserve their engagement rings for special occasions or when they dress up. Conversely, some like to wear their sparkling engagement rings all the time and forgo their wedding bands entirely. The choice is yours.
Reasons Why it’s Important to Wear your Wedding Ring?
Wedding rings are a symbol of commitment to your significant other. Wedding rings have been tokens of commitment for centuries, dating back to the middle ages where the groom would present the bride and her family with an expensive ring in order to prove his commitment to the marriage and that he would never step back from this relationship.
The ring signifies that you are in a committed relationship and having the ring on you at all times goes to show that you are open about this and that you are willing to show it off. Seeing the ring on your finger on a daily basis can also serve as a reminder to your partner about how much they mean to you and that it is them out of everyone else that you chose to spend the rest of your life with.
Wearing a wedding ring can also prove to be a symbol of attachment, love and affection. Although in some cases or societies around the world, marriage is not always believed to be the product of love but in any case, wearing your wedding ring goes to show that you are attached to the person you are married to and that they hold significant value/meaning in your life.
Furthermore, the ring can almost act as memory itself as it can make you reminisce about all of the good times who have shared with your spouse in the past, in times when you miss them the most. Along with being the representation of holy matrimony, the ring also has attached fond memories that you and your better half have shared over your time together.
Your wedding ring can also trigger you to think about the decisions you choose to make keeping your partner in mind. With your wedding ring on your finger, there comes an added responsibility, and that responsibility is to keep your partners respect in mind. You must understand that you are no longer single and that your actions can affect not only you but also your loved one. Therefore you must think twice before making certain decisions and ask yourself: “Am I being respectful to my partner by taking this decision?”
Respect is crucial not only in marriage but also in any relationship. Keeping your partner in mind will ensure that your relationship/marriage is a stable one.
A key reason as to why you should wear your wedding ring at all times is to avoid or block out any unwanted attention. Infidelity is one of the biggest reasons behind marriages ending in divorce, and it is something that a lot of married couples are in doubt of even though they may not admit to it. Having your wedding ring on can prevent such unwanted consequences from occurring as it sends a message to anyone that you may interact with daily, that you are in a committed relationship.
It is also said that the most common cause of infidelity is often emotional disconnection from your partner or feeling unappreciated or unloved. These feelings cannot be completely avoided as every married couple faces their ups and downs. Yet, you can still do your part by wearing your wedding ring every day in honour of your partner and to prove that you are and always will be attached, committed and respectful to your partner as discussed above.
The fifth reason to always wear your wedding ring is that it sets the right example for your children, along with giving them the impression that their parents’ marriage is secure. As time goes by and your children get to ages where they begin to understand the concept of marriage and healthy relationships, seeing you wearing your wedding ring every day will teach them the significance of the ring and they will learn the reasons behind both their mother and father choose to wear their rings till this day.
In other words, your future children will be more likely to have a healthy perspective on marriage by learning from the example that was set by you and your significant other.
In What Order Should I Place Rings on My Ring Finger?
If you’ve decided to wear your engagement and wedding rings on the same finger, you may be wondering about stacking. Married duos conventionally wear their wedding bands closest to their hearts, meaning they’re at the bottom of the stack, below the engagement ring and pushed towards the base of the knuckle.
If you want to honour this on your wedding day, the most popular strategy is to switch over your engagement ring to your right hand just before you walk down the aisle. Now your spouse-to-be can slide the band right up your left finger.
It can be topped off with the engagement ring during the ceremony, or later on. Some brides opt to have their wedding and engagement rings soldered together into one unified piece for added pragmatism. We love how this introduces an entirely new “marital bond” metaphor.
Can I Wear My Wedding Ring and Engagement Ring on Different Hands?
Absolutely! The choice often comes down to personal or cultural preference. Some women opt to wear their wedding ring on the left ring finger and their engagement ring on the right ring finger. Whether you choose to uphold a time-old tradition or create your very own is entirely up to you.
Can I Wear Rings on My Ring Finger If I’m Not Engaged or Married?
An old wives’ tale denotes that wearing a non-committal ring on your left-hand ring finger could be bad luck. Not the superstitious type? If the ring fits, wear it! That being said, wearing a ring on that finger could signify to others that you are in a committed relationship, which might not be ideal if you’re out on the dating scene.
Is It Okay to Wear Rings All the Time?
While it might be tempting to keep those rings on at all times (read: one last stop to think about), you’ll want to avoid any potential damage to the rings like scratching the metal, harming the stones, or disfiguring the setting. You’ll want to remove the rings when cleaning (especially if you’re using chemicals), go to the gym, participate in other physical activities, and even before bed. Removing your rings at night will not only protect your rings and thwart swelling, but it will also keep you (or your spouse) from waking up with scratches.
Have your engagement ring professionally cleaned and checked twice a year. This will maintain its brilliance and shine and ensure the ring hasn’t been damaged from wear.
How Do I Measure the Size of My Ring Finger?
A surprising amount of factors go into sizing up a ring finger. In addition to the shape and size of your finger, you’ll also need to consider your lifestyle and the actual ring you have in mind. If you’re frequently partaking in activities that may cause your finger to swell like physical exertion or flying, you’ll need to keep that in mind. Climate is an additional factor as hands and fingers swell in the summer and are more slender in the winter due to the cold. The band’s width will also impact the sizing as thicker bands tend to have a tighter fit.
To ensure the perfect fit, the best time to measure is when your body feels at its most normal—so at room temperature during the middle of the day (fingers can swell overnight), preferably not after hitting the gym or post hot meal. Ring guards or beads can help offset slight fluctuations in finger size if they arise. If you feel unsure about your ring size, consider getting professionally measured.
In conclusion, your wedding ring defines and highlights the love, commitment, and respect you have for your partner while also acting as a shield from any negative/unwanted entities. Your marriage has nothing to do with the perfect diamond ring or gold or any other metal at the end of the day, what matters most is the love between two spouses, not the ring that you gift.