Wearing a Ring on Your Wedding Finger if You’re Not Married

When I put out a call for topics in May, I received a great question from Marjory:

OK, Amy… Here’s a question. What does a girl wear on her wedding band finger when she’s past the stage of wanting to get married again. Is it just a matter of individual taste or personal style? I love rings, but that finger feels naked! Should it be a statement ring, stacked or multiple small rings, any particular stones (like my birthstone)??? I’d love your opinion.

First of all, thank you for your response, Marjory. This question resonates with me for so many reasons, and I’ve given it a lot of thought the past few weeks. What I think it boils down to is the “rules” our society has created. If you’re a married woman, then you’re supposed to wear a ring on that finger. If you’re single, then you don’t. Of course, this seems to only apply to women (shocker), as even my own father did not wear a wedding ring during his 50+ years of marriage, and that was acceptable by society’s standards. I can’t name one woman I know who’s married who doesn’t wear a ring. Curious.

And of course, there’s the flip side of the coin. I am single, yet I’d like to marry one day, and I’ve kept that finger bare as a baby’s butt for my entire adult life. I certainly wouldn’t want to scare off a potential suitor in the supermarket if I had a big ring on, right?

No…not right.

So here comes my conclusion. Married or not, I think you should be able to wear ANY ring on any finger you want — statement ring, your birthstone, whatever. Just in the past 6 months, I’ve started wearing rings on my wedding finger. (And yes, if felt a bit awkward at first.) Granted, this was mostly due to the fact that a weight gain (I love peri-menopause, by the way) has changed how some of my rings fit. I decided I didn’t want those rings to go into hiding, so on to my left hand they have gone. Be done with the ring rules, my friends!

I even went a step further this week. My ultra-conservitive father, who I certainly loved dearly, had some very peculiar notions about what a proper lady should do. This list included NO pierced ears and NO colored nail polish. In his mind, these things meant you were a very loose woman. I know he developed these notions during a rough upbringing in Flint, Michigan, and I know he only wanted the very best for me, but I must say that these rules do NOT apply to me…or anyone, for that matter.

So, I did it. I went for a manicure and got COLORED nail polish on my fingers yesterday while wearing a fabulous Arik Kastan moonstone ring, which brings me much joy, on my wedding finger. Bottom line, is follow your bliss and do what makes you happy.

 

I'm a rebel at age 46!!
I’m a rebel at age 46!!

Marjory, I hope this answers your question. xoxo

20 thoughts on “Wearing a Ring on Your Wedding Finger if You’re Not Married”

  1. So interesting that were discussing this topic, Ive been wondering the same thing. Ive noticed women wearing rings that are not wedding rings on the ring finger.
    Thank you for this new freedom!

  2. Excellent article, Amy!! I’m very proud of you to buck the “old” traditions. Your happiness is most important to me!!!

  3. you go girl! funny…as i was reading this…my grandparents had the same “rules”…that were passed down to my parents…no pierced ears…and dark nail polish…i didn’t get my ears pierced until my 40’s…and i still remember the look on my mother’s face the first time i had bright red nails…now it is all so natural for them to see me this way…

    my ring finger has remained ringless as well…i’m thinking that is the next step for “rebellious” elena!

    1. Sounds like we came from similar families, Elena. I say go for it, and start wearing rings on that finger if you want to.

  4. I’ve always worn rings on that finger, even as a teen, college student and young adult. I am married now and always wear my rings, but it never occurred to me that finger was off limits! It is the “Ring Finger” after all!

  5. Thanks so much for your take on this subject, Amy. I love wearing a variety of rings on that finger (maybe it was a bit of rebellion after my divorce). I just bought a beautiful opal ring (my birthstone) for that finger.

  6. Love this topic! When I was in eighth grade my math teacher jokingly said to me (as I was sporting a ring on practically ever finger on both hands!) “people who wear lots of rings can’t do math!” Well, having recently just entered into the ‘divorced’ category, I am happy to take my anniversary ring off my left hand and place it onto my right hand (since I’m the one who drew up the design for a well known designer to create for me, I am not going to be with out it!). And now, on my left-hand “Ring Finger”, sits 4 rings I made myself!! Yep – 4! Three tiny hammered silver bands and one rather thick silver, textured band. The silver stack looks awesome and feels perfect. I believe your thinking of ‘follow your bliss and do what makes you happy’ can extend way beyond your fingers!! Great Post!

    1. Love that you’ve made your own rings for that finger!! You clearly have great energy, and I appreciate you commenting, Michelle.

  7. Several years ago I had a Sales Manager that was single start wearing a silver band on his “ring” finger…he told me it was to attract more ladies as they thought he was married so not some guy trying to pickup on them…when in reality he was luring them in!

  8. Great topic and one I’ve been pondering since my single days over 20 years ago! I used to wear band rings on my wedding finger all the time; I just didn’t care what anyone assumed about my status. In totally annoyed one of my friends who kept her wedding finger free as a sign to eligible men. When I married I chose a traditional diamond and platinum set and wore it religiously until – weight gain! So I started to create alternate wedding sets but always with the feel of something traditional. But really, I don’t care what anyone assumes about me personal life! Now I alternate between my original (2x resized) set and these other sets. Amy – my dad is 82 and swore he’d never allow me to get my ears pierced! Somehow he relented when i was 15. As for nails, long nails were a “thing” with almost all of the women on both sides of my family. It was “what a woman should do”. Color was kept subtle. Up until a few years ago when I knew I’d be seeing my dad I’d make sure to be wearing a subtle color polish so as not to shock him! Anyway, bottom line – a woman should wear whatever she wants to wear!

      1. What I didn’t say was that I was so afraid of changing the earrings i wore the same ‘starter’ ones for years!

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