How do I ring?
December 21, 2016 7:50 AM   Subscribe

So, I am recently engaged to a fabulous guy, yay! And I am wearing an engagement ring (which I like very much and which we picked out together) pretty much every day now. It is simultaneously really difficult to get off over my knuckle, and often spins so that the stones are on the inside, which is not the end of the world (it's a channel setting so the stones don't snag or anything) but is not ideal. What do I need to ask/tell the jeweler to get the ring to fit correctly?

I have zero experience wearing rings - I don't think I ever wore one for more than a few hours before, like as part of a "dressing up for a party" look, and they were mostly cheap costume pieces so I didn't worry too much about them falling off or anything. I know "real" rings are supposed to fit fairly tight, so that you don't lose them in a glove or mitten or something, but I think mine might still be too tight (except it also spins around a lot).

I agreed with the jeweler who sized me that the 6 was too big (it easily slides right over my knuckle). The ring has so far been resized twice; once before I got it from too small for me to wear (it's a vintage ring) to 5.5, which was definitely too small (salty taco night led to me having to soak my hand in ice water in order to get the ring off), then again to something bigger than 5.5 but smaller than 6. At 5.75-ish it is still very hard to get it on and off and I kind of feel like I'm pulling my knuckle out of joint sometimes; I like the ring, but not enough to give myself arthritis over it. It's very rare that I can get the ring off without using water as a lubricant. I do think my fingers have probably been on the less-puffy side when I've gone to the jeweler (cold weather, etc.) but even at my lowest puffiness it is still difficult to get the ring off (I lived the first 38 years of my life mercifully unaware of how much my finger size varies over the course of the day/month).

So what's going on here? How can 6 feel too big and 5.75 (or whatever we're at now) too small? Is it reasonable to ask the (small, independent) jeweler to resize again for free? And on a less-important note, how do I get the ring to stop spinning while still fitting over my knuckle?

Oh, also, FWIW I want to be able to put the ring on and take it off multiple times a day - among other things I put on hand lotion every time I wash my hands and the channel set stones get gross fast if I put the lotion on while I'm wearing the ring. Non-cracked skin on my hands is more important to me than the ring. Also I am afraid of leaving the ring on overnight after the aforementioned taco night incident.
posted by mskyle to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (19 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
My wife had a similar issue, complicated by the fact she's a violist, so the spinning ring would interfere with her playing. The jeweler recommended adding sizing beads instead of resizing further. While it didn't stop the ring from spinning ever, it helped significantly, and she's happy with the result.
posted by BevosAngryGhost at 8:05 AM on December 21, 2016 [6 favorites]

My engagement ring is just a little too big and so I consulted my landlord/jeweler (although she did not make the ring) and she suggested sizing beads on my slightly too large ring and to keep in mind that a wedding band (one day) will hold the ring in place a bit better. It sounds like a 6 is probably a better fit for you with some sizing beads and the possibility of a band holding it in place one day.
posted by thefang at 8:15 AM on December 21, 2016

Ah, I should probably also add that I am currently planning on just wearing the one ring and not getting an additional wedding ring.
posted by mskyle at 8:29 AM on December 21, 2016

Congratulations! For what it's worth, the ring I've been wearing for 15 years is of a looseness that if I flick my hand back and forth for a few seconds it sometimes flies off, which is about where you describe the size 6 ring. It has fallen off by accident maybe 2 times in those 15 years. So I'd argue that a little bit loose is just fine especially if you will want to take it off regularly (I take mine off when putting on lotion or preparing food.)

I think the channel design is what is letting the ring spin freely; mine doesn't have any stones but does have a right side, and sometimes it's flipped around. Rotating it to face up is such a default, it's like tucking long hair behind my ear. I think the answer is just "if it's looser you'll be able to turn it back more easily."
posted by tchemgrrl at 8:55 AM on December 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

What material is the ring? If it's gold, it might expand a little over time and start to feel more comfortable to get on and off. I was POSITIVE my gold engagement ring was a little too small at first, but now it feels perfect. As you have probably noticed, your fingers swell when it's hot outside and shrink when it's cold, so the spinning issue might just be temporary because it's cold out. I would probably try to avoid resizing it a third time, it does weaken the integrity of the band (of so I've been told).
posted by cakelite at 9:00 AM on December 21, 2016

Constant ring wearer here, including my anniversary ring for the past 10 years and engagement/wedding ring for the previous 10. This is a ring thing -- your fingers truly do change in size during the day, so a ring that is hard to remove at one time of day will come off fairly readily at a different time. Also rings do turn on fingers. I regularly adjust my anniversary ring with my other fingers as it slips to one side or another, and it is pretty much an unconscious reflex to do so at this point.

Whatever you and your jeweler decide on, and I agree beads may help to minimize the ring turning on your finger, do not increase its sizing. You so do not want your ring to slip off your finger. They have a homing instinct for drains from which they can never be recovered again.
posted by bearwife at 9:08 AM on December 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

I went through this when I was first engaged. Rings - especially on a finger where you've likely never worn one - are weird. If the jeweler thinks the size is right, then stop worrying about changing the size and let yourself settle in with it for a few months. It really does get easier within a few weeks and in a few months you don't notice it at all. For example, I unconsciously changed the way I put on hand cream. I never get gunk in the prongs anymore, but when I first got engaged I had that problem all the time.

Also, you can get a Silicone Wedding Ring for all the time when you really want to protect your gold ring (gardening, weight lifting) or when your ring might nick something (wearing my wetsuit is my biggie).

You have the rest of you life to get used to the ring and it will happen pretty quickly. Best wishes for a lifetime of happiness!
posted by 26.2 at 9:09 AM on December 21, 2016 [2 favorites]

Also, you can have the ring euroshanked, but I'd hold off on that until you've worn it for a few months.
posted by 26.2 at 9:10 AM on December 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

Would it be possible to have it hinged? When my grandmother-in-law had a jeweler prepare her mother's engagement ring for me, she had them create a hinge that could be pulled apart at the bottom to allow it to slide over an enlarged knuckle (which she had and predicted I might someday...and yeah, 25 years on it's looking like she was prescient). The ring doesn't slide around on my finger, and the hinge is quite sturdy.
posted by tully_monster at 9:12 AM on December 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

One thing that might be constituting to the spinning is that most mandrels around which rings are shaped are round, but fingers are actually more squared-off in cross section. In addition to the sizing beads suggested earlier, talk to your jeweler about whether making it a bit squarer might help.
posted by Lexica at 10:31 AM on December 21, 2016

Came here to say sizing beads as well. They come recommended on the rings board of Wedding Bee.
posted by LoonyLovegood at 10:49 AM on December 21, 2016

Thanks for all the replies! Ring is platinum and I've been wearing it at current size for almost two months.

I'm mostly concerned about how difficult it is to get off. Right now, in my cold office after sitting at my desk for a few hours with well-lotioned-up hands it takes a few seconds to get the ring off, which feels right, but after exercise, sleep, booze, or salty food it's a minutes-long process requiring cold water, and I feel like I'm pulling my knuckle out of joint. This is at least once a day and it's not my favorite.

I'm probably going to keep it as-is through the holidays at least; I guess it would be good to see how it fits in summer before I make any rash resizing decisions.
posted by mskyle at 11:08 AM on December 21, 2016

I would vote for taking your ring off less. I think over time you kind of figure out how to do stuff like hand lotion without getting your ring gross. I have an engagement ring with a lot of little fussy details that would definitely get gross from lotion if I lotion-ed over the ring, but I've sort of figured out how to do hand lotion so that doesn't happen, so that is do-able! The only thing I take my ring off for anymore is raw meat or other extremely messy activities (like kneading bread) -- otherwise I just leave it on and it's fine.
posted by rainbowbrite at 11:36 AM on December 21, 2016 [5 favorites]

Head over to Lowe's or Home Depot and buy a foot of flexible plastic tubing. Cut off a piece about 3/8" long, and then cut a slit the length of the piece. You now have a ring snuggy and enough tubing to keep you in ring snuggies for the rest of your life. Or order them from Amazon.
posted by Dolley at 11:54 AM on December 21, 2016

I am surprised you get so many responses suggesting that ring fits. If it takes a few seconds to take off in ideal conditions and you need to resort to cold water etc in frequent slightly less ideal conditions it doesn't fit. The fact that you say it is difficult to get over your joint even on a good day makes me think it doesn't fit. I have never had a ring just slide off my finger and I refuse to wear rings that take that kind of effort to put on/take off. There is a happy medium. So don't discount the possibility that the ring is too small after all.
posted by koahiatamadl at 11:56 AM on December 21, 2016

How, uh, wedded are you to the idea of wearing this particular ring? Going to second the silicone wedding ring thing.

I got hitched this year and had a hard time getting used to hard rings, having never worn them before. Finally, I gave up and copied what my husband does for day to day ring wearing: got a silicone wedding band. They're super comfortable (they're soft so they form to your actual finger which as mentioned above is more an oval than a circle), easy to get on and off (since they stretch a bit), but also stay put (grippiness of the silicone material). They're pretty cheap, and you can get a bunch of different colors to coordinate with outfits. They don't click or scratch up anything I'm using my hands on. What's more, you don't run the risk of degloving wearing one, which is why they're so popular with EMTs, machinist, and exercise enthusiasts!
posted by foxfirefey at 12:24 PM on December 21, 2016

I'd go up to the 6 and get sizing beads. I'd also recommend getting a wedding band. The more stuff that is stacked there the less it spins. Also, as an every day ring wearer with tiny fingers, my ring fits but spins. I just get used to adjusting it. I don't even realize I do it. It's just automatic like brushing your hair out of your face or adjusting glasses. I've been wearing this ring since 2011. So it may take a few months more but I do think yours sounds small. I also adjust mine with just the hand that's wearing it which involves finger wiggling and some thumb action. Again, literally a mindless adjustment at this point.
posted by Crystalinne at 2:18 PM on December 21, 2016

Thanks for all the suggestions! I think I'm most likely going to get it resized again - after a bit of further googling I wonder if part of the problem is that the sizer rings I'm using in the front of the shop and the ring mandrel that the person doing the actual work of resizing is using are a bit off from each other.

I love the ring but being able to take it off easily is pretty important to me. I would rather risk losing it than feel trapped by it.

As for the spinning I think I'll most likely get in the habit of turning it back round - I think I'm actually already starting to do this and I can now tell it's upside-down by touch. So I can reassess that once I've had it resized again.
posted by mskyle at 6:57 AM on December 22, 2016

Many shops don't do their work in house, go to a place where you can talk directly to the person who will be working on your ring.
posted by yohko at 6:04 PM on December 22, 2016

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