Wearing rings can be a fun way of expressing one’s personal style, showing off a commitment ring, a family heirloom, or dressing up. Knowing how to measure your finger for a ring is an immensely useful skill. While many jewelers will be able to measure your ring size in-store, if you’re ordering online, or if you need to have something refit, there are some easy ways to do it. You can use some easy-to-find household items including a piece of string, floss, or a piece of paper. You’ll need a measuring tape, a pencil, and scissors. Depending on how you want to do it, all that needs to be done after you have your millimeter measurement is to compare those numbers to a standard measurement for ring sizes.
Read on to learn how to measure your finger for a ring. We’ll discuss how ring measurement has evolved, and what the standard sizes are. Learn the methods for measuring your finger, and how to compare those in millimeters. By the end of this, you’ll be a pro in at-home ring measurement. So, stick around to learn. Never again will you not know your ring size, which makes buying second-hand jewelry more fun!
Breakdown of Ring Sizing
Ring sizing corresponds to the inner diameter of the ring, and it's done in millimeters. The U.S. ring sizes range from 3 to 13.5 depending on the finger size. These “sizes” are matched to a specific inner diameter of a ring size (via Brilliance). Since fingers can come in a range of sizes (even the same fingers on different hands may be different sizes), it is super important to get a fit that is not only comfortable but also secure.
A typical female's ring size chart breaks down as follows (via Tiffany & Co.) These numbers are in terms of size and the inside circumference (mm) :
- 3 / 44.2
- 3.5 / 45.5
- 4 / 46.8
- 4.5 / 48.0
- 5 / 49.3
- 5.5 / 50.6
- 6 / 51.9
- 6.5 / 53.1
- 7 / 54.4
- 7.5 / 55.7
- 8 / 57.0
- 8.5 / 58.3
- 9 / 59.5
- 9.5 / 60.8
- 10 / 62.1
- 10.5 / 63.4
- 11 / 64.6
- 11.5 / 65.9
- 12 / 67.2
- 12.5 / 68.5
- 13 / 69.7
Note that this chart applies to smaller fingers, of those typically belonging to a female individual. For larger ring sizing, applicable for male individuals, check out this handy chart from David Yurman. The men's sizes range from 8-14, with the most typical size/average ring size being 10.
Methods For Measuring
Now we'll move on to the methods for measuring. These are great if you don't have access to a ring-sizer (which you can order online, see the link at the bottom). Also, these methods are possible to use less obviously than outright asking, or going to a jeweler. The point is, if this ring were a secret, there are ways to measure someone's finger with these common household objects. These methods are usable, but if you want an exact measurement, it does help to go to a jeweler or to use a real ring-sizer.
The String (or Floss) Method
Taking a piece of string, or floss, simply take whatever finger you're looking to measure and tie the string/floss tightly around it. You can also simply mark where the string touches with a permanent marker. You want it to be secure, but not too tight. If you choose to tie the string, keep It in its tied position, and slide it carefully off the finger. Cut off any excess, approximate how much extra string the knot added, and undo the knot. Now lay the string out on any measuring tape or tool that shows millimeters. If you didn't tie your string, simply measure to your marking. Now compare that measurement to the list above to get a sizing for your ring.
The Paper Method
The paper method is similar to the string method, but instead, cut a slip of paper to look like a band around your finger. You can either mark where the ends touch or tape it (you will have to undo the tape momentarily). Lay the paper flat against a measuring device and take the inside circumference number. Compare this to the list to get your ring size for any given finger. Remember that each hand may be different so be sure to measure for that particular finger.
The Tracing Method
This is, perhaps, the easiest method of all. If you already have a ring that fits you well, or a partner's ring is lying about, trace the inside of the ring. Be sure to trace it carefully because much deviation could mean the ring will be too large or too small!
Other Ways to Measure Your Ring Size
A chart from the internet can be printed out and used to measure your ring size. Check out these charts from Macy's, and Noray Designs, a handmade jeweler. The company Brilliant Earth will also send you a complimentary ring sizer if you're considering a piece from their website. There are also affordable options from Amazon, check them out below:
- $3.95Buy Now
This ring sizer comes with a magnifying glass which makes it easy to measure and read out the sizing. Available for U.S. sizes 1-17. This ring is like a belt, push the tape through the buckle until its secure on your finger. Check your ring size and get to buying your new ring!
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Tips To Keep In Mind
- Try measuring multiple times if you can, this way you're likely to be more accurate.
- If you use stretchy material to measure, this could result in inaccurate sizing. Stick to the string, floss, or paper method over a hair tie or a rubber band.
- Fingers swell and contract. They often swell overnight, and when they're cold they can get smaller. Keep this in mind when you're measuring for a new ring as well (via TIME).
The image featured at the top of this post is ©SabOlga/Shutterstock.com.