How to size a ring

If you’ve ever tried to find a ring that fits your finger well, you may have wondered whether you could have your ring resized later if anything goes wrong. But is resizing always possible, and what risks does it entail?



Usually, in order to resize a ring, jewelers cut its band and then increase or decrease its size before rejoining it.

To resize a ring, jewelers cut its band and then increase or decrease its size.

To resize a ring, jewelers cut the band and then increase or decrease its size.

To increase the size of your ring, the jeweler will spread it as much as needed after cutting it and will then add a new piece of metal to fill the gap.

Decreasing a ring’s size works in a similar fashion: The jeweler will cut out a strip from the ring and narrow the band by joining the two ends together.

After the resizing is done, the jeweler will put your ring back together by soldering the band where it was cut.

Related: See the most popular fine rings offered on Amazon.

You need an Expert Jeweler for Resizing your Ring

Resizing a ring is delicate procedure. Not just any jeweler is up for the task. It’s best to hire the expertise of a seasoned jeweler. Here are some situations where ring resizing can become complicated.

Resizing your Ringsource:

  1. In case of a channel set or a pave set ring, the gemstones and diamonds can get misaligned during the resizing process.
  2. The prongs of the ring can flare out or get compressed during the resizing process.
  3. Delicate gems like opals, pearls, and emeralds, or inlaid stones can all get damaged during soldering process. These stones may even need to be removed during resizing, and then reset correctly afterwards.
  4. Engravings on the ring can be damaged during resizing. You may need to have the engravings done again after the resizing process.
  5. Very thick or very thin rings can be difficult to size up or size down.
  6. In some cases, a ring can needs to change more than 4 sizes smaller or larger. It is difficult and expensive to resize rings this dramatically.
  7. Rings with shared prongs are also difficult to resize.

If any of these situations apply to you, then you should take the time to seek out an experienced resizing jeweler. Don’t just walk into any jewelry store for the procedure.

Selecting your Ring Resizing Jeweler

Ring Resizing Jewelersource:

There are many factors to assure you that a ring resizing “expert” is actually good at what they do. Here are some tips to help you choose one.

  1. Get word of mouth referralsAsk your friends and/or colleagues if they have had their ring resized. If yes, ask them about their experience and whether they were satisfied with the work done by their selected professional.
  2. Go to the locally-owned jewelry storesMost local jewelry stores have knowledgeable staff or owner-operators to advise you about jewelry resizing.  Locally-owned, boutique jewelry stores with expert jewelers or owned by expert jewelers are usually the best at ring resizing projects. Their reputations and future sales rely on their being good at what they do. So you’ll get the care and attention your ring deserves.Be wary of mall-based jewelry stores. Generally these types of stores are sales outposts, so they don’t have a professional jeweler on site. They will send your ring back to their headquarters for the procedure.
  3. Online Ring Resizing ServicesSeveral online jewelry stores offer sales and servicing online. However, you should read through their entire website. Read their testimonials. Google for reviews about the company. Is there a number you can reach them at? If you plan on using an online service, then you will have to mail them your ring. When sending your ring, be sure to pay extra for insurance and a confirmation receipt/signature.
  4. A traveling personal jewelerMany reputed jewelers can visit you at your home. They do not have an office, so they travel from job to job. They can give you personalized service and make custom repairs to your jewelry in the comfort of your home.
  5. Don’t be cheapA resized ring should look beautiful when complete. There should be no misalignment in its stones, prongs or the color of the shank. The engravings, if any, should not appear blurred and there should be no compromise to the overall ring quality.Select a ring jeweler who will do a marvelous job, no matter if it costs you a little more. Do not compromise on this aspect just to save a few bucks. You will regret your decision later if it comes back with problems.
  6. Make sure they careDespite the jeweler you choose, make sure you get a sense that they care about your jewelry. Make sure they have the willingness and skill to deal with any challenges that come with resizing your ring. Don’t just let the first guy willing to take your money do the job. Make sure it’s the right guy or girl.
  7. Ask for your CutoutDo not hesitate to ask them for your ring cutout when you are reducing the ring’s size. The Cutout is the piece of extra metal which is “cut out” when down-sizing your ring.Why would you want it? Someday you may want to up-size your ring, so having the original matching piece of metal will make it easier and cheaper to do. A reputed jeweler will not hesitate giving it back to you.
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Checking the Quality of your Resized Ring

To resize your ring up, your jeweler will cut the ring, add a bridge and then solder its ends. To resize the ring down, the jeweler will cut a strip off from your ring’s shank and solder the ends together. Many complications may arise during these procedures.Checking the Quality of your Resized Ring

  • When you get your ring back, make sure you test all the stones. Use a sharp needle or a toothpick to poke at the stone. If the stones move, the job was not done right and you need to send the ring back to have your stones set more securely.
  • Resizing can leave a week spot in the ring’s shank. Try to press the ring in the shank. If it bends or gets distorted, your jeweler has not done a good job.
  • Improper resizing can lead to thin or narrow sections on the ring which do not conform to the rest of the shank.
  • The ring shank should not have any visible depressions in the place where the shank was soldered. The shank should be uniform in thickness, flat and well polished.A dented line along the shank indicates a weaker ring due to use of a cheaper or a different colored alloy than the original.Note that resizing a platinum ring is usually a complicated process and WILL leave a marked difference in its color at the place of soldering no matter what. This is due to the inherent properties of platinum.

Alternatives to Resizing your Ring

Now that you know all the pros and cons of ring resizing, the question remains: should you do it? Let’s help you decide whether or not to resize your ring…

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Ring Snuggies ~ Ring SizerRings tend to change size based on the season. Maybe your ring fits you well in summers, but it is loose in winter. You can use plastic re-sizers that will prevent seasonal size changes.

RinGuard Ring Size AdjusterTemporary ring guards are also available in case you have a very delicate ring that cannot be resized. Ring Guards are available in white and rose gold metal. They can be easily worn with your ring without being too obvious.

In some cases, wearing a tight fitting ring with a loose fitting ring can help. The tighter ring can prevent the large ring from slipping off your finger.

Hacks to Gauge Ring Size

Unfortunately, there’s no exact science to sizing a ring properly. The general rule of thumb is this: a ring that fits well is one that goes on the finger easily, but comes off with a bit of difficulty.

It is unlikely you can tell someone’s ring size by just looking at his or her hand. The only sure fire way to get the size right is to do some digging, to go under the radar and find out their ring size.

Here are a few tricks to snag her ring size without your her cluing in!

  • Ask one of her friends. They can help you guess the size, or ask HER what size she wears, and deliver the information to you!
  • Borrow another ring she regularly wears. Be sure to take note of which hand she wears it on!
  • If you’re worried about her missing a borrowed ring, take 5 minutes to trace the inside and outside loop of the ring on a piece of paper.
  • For a rough ballpark, you can also compare fingers when holding hands! Is her ring finger larger or smaller than your pinky?

What To Know About Resizing

Let’s say you did manage to get the wrong ring size. Now what? There are a few options. The first, of course, is to hire a professional jewelry to alter it. If modified by a professional jeweler, most rings can be altered by at most two ring sizes.

Making a ring smaller is easier than making it larger – the process of downsizing is actually pretty simple. All the jeweler has to do is cut a chunk of the band and weld it back together. Voila! A smaller ring.

Whenever a ring is professionally resized, it should be perfectly polished and look just as pristine as it did before the jewelry altered it.  

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Some rings cannot be resized. These are:

  • Titanium Rings
  • Tungsten Rings
  • Stainless Steel Rings
  • Eternity Rings with gemstones around the entire band
  • Rings With An Invisible Tension SettingRing Sizing
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