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How to Measure Ring Size

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Hand holding a ring sizer tool

Ring shopping can be tricky—especially online—if you don’t know what ring size will fit you properly. The wrong ring size can make the jewel impossible to wear without getting it resized. For example, a ring that’s too big could slip off, whereas a ring that’s too small may only go on the finger as far as the knuckle—or fit so tightly that it causes physical discomfort.

 

How is Ring Size Measured?  

The size of a ring is determined by measuring its inner diameter (inside width) or circumference (length of the entire band) in inches or millimeters. While most countries measure rings in the same way, their sizing conventions may differ. For instance, the U.S. and Canada use numbers (which includes half and quarter sizes) whereas the UK and Australia use a letter-based system. So, a ring that is 16.5 millimeters (about 0.65 in) in diameter would register as a 6 in the U.S. and Canada and as an L ½ in the UK and Australia.

 

Can All Rings Be Resized?

The solution for ill-fitting rings is to have them sized up or down by a jeweler. In general, rings can be adjusted up to two sizes larger or smaller. However, anything more than that can compromise the integrity of the ring.  

Resizing a ring can cost anywhere from $20 to a few hundred dollars, depending on the jeweler and the complexity of the job. Most of the time, resizing a ring will take a day or so to complete, but there could be a significant wait time (which might be a problem if you’re planning a proposal for a specific date).

Note that some rings typically can’t be resized, which means you’ll really need to get the fit right at the time of purchase. Two examples: Rings with stones that go all the way around the ring, like diamond eternity bands, and bands made of very hard metals like titanium, tungsten carbide, or stainless steel, which aren’t flexible enough for resizing or reshaping.

Selecting a ring that fits properly from the get-go is efficient, cost-effective (no resizing required!), and ensures it can be worn immediately. Fortunately, there are several ways to accurately determine ring size, whether you’re shopping for yourself or a loved one. Ahead, we’ll share some ring-sizing techniques you can try at home, along with tips to get the most accurate results. 

Ready? Let’s see how you measure up! 

 

How to Measure Your Ring Size at Home

Here are four easy, do-it-yourself ring sizing methods to try at home. While these techniques are commonly used to determine ring size, keep in mind that they don’t guarantee 100% accuracy. That’s why we recommend trying more than one method to be extra sure!

 

How to Measure Ring Size with String 

What You’ll Need:

  • Piece of string 
  • Pair of scissors 
  • Pen or marker
  • Ruler or measuring tape 
  • Ring sizer guide 

Instructions: 

  • Cut a six-inch piece of string.
  • Wrap the string around the base of the finger, just below the knuckle. Use your thumb to hold down the base of the string or have someone assist you. 
  • With either a marker or a pen, mark the spot on the string where it overlaps the end pressed to the base of the finger. The string should have made a full circle. Do not stretch taught. 
  • Straighten out the string and measure it against a ruler in millimeters. 
  • Use the ring sizer guide to translate the measurement into a ring size. 

 

How to Measure Ring Size with Paper 

Person measuring paper ring against ruler

What You’ll Need: 

  • Paper 
  • Pair of scissors 
  • Pen or marker
  • Ruler or measuring tape 
  • Ring sizer guide 

Instructions: 

  • Draw a skinny 6 inch x 1/4 inch rectangle on a piece of paper.
  • Cut out the rectangle. 
  • Wrap this strip of paper around the base of the finger, just below the knuckle. Use your thumb to hold down the ends of the paper or have someone assist you. 
  • With either a marker or a pen, mark the spot on the paper where it overlaps the end pressed to the base of the finger. (The paper should have made a full circle.) 
  • Straighten out the paper and measure it from the beginning to the mark against a ruler in millimeters. 
  • Use the ring sizer guide to translate the measurement into a ring size. 

 

How to Measure Ring Size with a Plastic Ring Sizer Belt 

Person using a ring sizing belt

For the most accurate DIY measurement, you can buy a ring-sizing tool online. When purchasing a ring sizer, make sure to buy one that is adjustable so that you can get a precise measurement. 

  • Choose which finger you want to wear the ring on. Remember, your fingers are all different sizes! 
  • Push the end of the ring sizer through the “buckle” so it forms a ring shape and slide the sizer onto the intended finger. 
  • Adjust the tightness until you have a comfortable fit. Shake your fingers a bit to make sure it's not too loose.
  • When you have the right fit, note the size indicated at the arrow.  

 

Use a Printable Ring Sizer from Jewelers Mutual 

Here’s a sneaky way to find out someone’s ring size: Grab a ring they already own, one that you know fits them perfectly. Then, print out this true-to-size online ring sizer. Slide the ring over the circles until you find a size that matches. For best results, print the ring sizer at 100%. You may need to uncheck “fit to page” or set page scaling to “none.” 

 

Tips for Measuring Ring Size Accurately

Keep in mind that your ring won’t fit the exact same way every day—your fingers may shrink or swell in size due to a variety of factors, such as time of day, what you’ve eaten, temperature, and more.  

So keep the following tips in mind when trying to determine your ring size: 

  • Left-hand and right-hand ring fingers can differ in size. Measure the finger you plan to wear the ring on.
  • Avoid taking any measurements on unusually hot or cold days. Fingers can shrink in cold and expand in heat, so make sure your body is at room temperature when measuring.
  • Avoid eating salty foods, drinking alcohol, or performing any strenuous activity/exercising before measuring because these activities can make your fingers swell. 
  • Measure your finger midday. Fingers tend to be more swollen in the morning and evening.  
  • To increase the accuracy of your measurement, size up to three times on different days.  
  • Make sure your hands are free of any lotions or oils. 
  • Thicker bands have less “give” for slipping over your knuckle, so you may need to increase the ring size by at least a ¼ inch.
  • If your measurement falls between two sizes, choose the larger size.

 

Get Your Ring Size Professionally Measured 

Don’t want to leave anything to chance? Fair enough! Have your ring size measured by your local jeweler. They will use specialized tools and equipment—like a metal finger-gauge ring-sizer or a mandrel—to measure your ring size accurately.  

Having a ring that fits properly is a must—you won’t wear it otherwise! Once you land on the correct size and purchase a ring accordingly, the next step is to protect your investment by obtaining personal jewelry insurance through Jewelers Mutual. It’s an affordable option that covers loss, damage, and mysterious disappearances. You can receive a jewelry insurance quote in just 30 seconds by clicking the button below. No personal information is required. 

 

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About Jewelers Mutual Group

Jewelers Mutual was founded in 1913 by a group of Wisconsin jewelers to meet their unique insurance needs. Later, consumers began putting their trust in Jewelers Mutual to protect their jewelry and the special memories each piece holds. Today, Jewelers Mutual continues to support and move the industry forward by listening to jewelers and consumers and offering products and services to meet their evolving needs. Beyond insurance, Jewelers Mutual’s powerful suite of innovative solutions and digital technology offerings help jewelers strengthen and grow their businesses, mitigate risk, and bring them closer to their customers. The Group insurers’ strong financial position is reflected in their 37 consecutive “A+ Superior” ratings from AM Best Company, as of November 2023. Policyholders of the Group insurers are members of Jewelers Mutual Holding Company. Jewelers Mutual is headquartered in Neenah, Wisconsin, with other Group offices in Dallas, Texas and Miami, Florida. To learn more, visit JewelersMutual.com.