Which Finger Do Wedding and Engagement Rings Go On?

Which Finger Do Wedding and Engagement Rings Go On?

You’re finally here at this very moment–the most important proposal you’re ever going to make, asking the love of your life’s hand in marriage. It’s a picturesque moment, and so far, it’s been going according to plan. The place is nice. You look great. Your loved one looks beautiful. Now you get down on your knees, take out that small box inside your pocket, pop it open and out comes the shiny ring. You say your beautifully crafted words to propose. Your loved one cries. You cry, too. You ask the million-dollar question. That person says yes. Now, you remove the ring from the box. And then it happens...where do you place the ring? Which hand? Which finger?  

Let’s get this clear first and foremost: Engagement and wedding rings are typically worn on, well, the ring finger (aka the fourth finger on your left hand).


Why is the ring traditionally worn on the left finger in the first place? 

The story behind this tradition dates back to the ancient Romans (err, the original Roman-tics). They believed that the vein in the ring finger of the left hand ran directly to one’s heart, leading them to call that vein the “vena amoris” or vein of love. Naturally, for them, there’s no greater symbolism of a union based on love than placing a ring in that vein.

Modern-day understanding of biology messes with this belief, though, as it suggests that all human fingers have vein connections to the heart. But you know what, screw science. Up in here, we’re embracing love rituals that transcend time.

Is it a rule that needs to be followed? 

Don’t worry! You’re not going to get jailed if you decide not to put the ring on the 4th finger of your left hand. Some people break the rules if they feel more comfortable or simply prefer the look. Engaged or married couples in some European countries tend to do the same. In India, the left hand was considered unclean and unlucky, so rings have always been worn on the right. Greek brides and grooms traditionally wear their rings on the right, as do Orthodox Christians.

How to wear an engagement ring with a wedding ring

Another ring-wearing confusion is the way wedding rings are worn. So the person proposed to have an engagement ring worn on the left ring finger. Where does the wedding ring then go? The wedding ring traditionally also goes to the left-hand ring finger. For that reason, the bride will have a couple of choices on the wedding day.

These days, lots of people stack their wedding and engagement rings and wear both of them on the left ring finger. The rule is that the wedding ring is placed on the finger before the engagement ring because superstition states that the wedding ring should never be taken off. Before the bride walks down the aisle, she must switch the engagement ring to the right hand, then when the wedding ceremony is over, she can slide her engagement ring on top of the wedding ring to seal it in place.

However, if a bride doesn’t want to wear both the engagement and wedding rings on the same hand, she can choose to simply wear the engagement ring on the right hand, or customise the rings and weld them together to create a bespoke ring (Customise your engagement ring to match with your wedding ring!).


What other ring-wearing questions do you have? Are you going to follow some traditions during your engagement and wedding?