The Hows And Whys to Ring Resizing

resizing a ring

Changing A Ring’s Size Is Common

The necessity to resize your ring may arise due to a variety of reasons. For example, some people do it because of weight loss or weight gain and the band becomes too loose/tight.

Sometimes, people perform a resizing of their rings simply because they want to wear the ring on another finger.

Whatever the reasons are, one thing is certain: resizing is a very common procedure and can be done on most types of rings. However, as to every rule, there are exceptions too.

I recommend that you seek professional advice and always consult a jeweler (or maybe two, just to be on the safe side) if you really need to resize your ring.

The general rule of the thumb is, a ring can be modified up to a maximum of two sizes.

IMPORTANT: Read This First!

ring too small for finger

This ring is too small to fit comfortably on the finger.

Before you do anything rash with your current ring (especially for first time ring wearers), do you actually know how tight or loose should a ring be for it to be considered as correctly sized?

A ring which is properly adjusted to the size of your finger should feel a wee bit tight to you (while it actually is not). It should go on your finger easy and come off a bit harder, with a slight brush against your skin.

Getting used to the feeling takes a few days during which you will constantly feel and think that the ring is too tight for you. While patience is key, if your new ring still feels too tight or uncomfortable after a few days, you should consult your jeweler.

 


Resizing Your Ring to a Smaller Size

Making a ring smaller is a fairly easy process compared to making it larger. When a ring is made smaller, the jeweler usually cuts out a small portion of the band, and joins the pieces back together again.

After restoring the circular shape, the ring is soldered back together and cleaned of any oxidation caused during the soldering. The ring is also given a polish to smoothen its surface. When the job is completed, there should be no indication or visible details that the ring had been resized.

fern engraved details ring

Due to the intricate craftsmanship, it is almost impossible to rework a ring like this.

For simple ring designs with plain shanks or uniform bands, resizing is fairly easily. However, ornate rings or rings that carry a certain design around the entire length of the band are harder to work with. This is because the ornate design might have to be remade completely due to a change in ring size.

Increasing the Size of Your Ring

Depending how much your ring needs to be sized up, there are generally two methods to do this. If it just needs to be modified slightly larger, stretching is the best option to achieve your desired modification.

The limit to this is that stretching can be done to a maximum of a half size larger depending on the material and design of the jewelry. Reworks to increase the ring by more than half a size requires the ring to be cut. Thereafter, additional pieces of metal are soldered into the gap.

Increasing your ring’s size may pose a problem if your band has an ornate pattern around it as discussed above. If the ring has multiple stones (e.g. channel settings) attached to it, it might be necessary to move the diamonds or gems around the band to balance the setting in order to keep its inherent beauty.

Regardless of whether you are enlarging or shrinking your ring, you should always check that the ring had been properly polished and that the ring’s surface is smoothed out evenly with no visual signs of soldering lines.

fitting a ring correctly on finger

Make sure that the ring is a perfect fit

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Ring Resized?

Well, it really depends on a number of factors. Ring resizing involves material costs (gold/platinum) and labor fees (depends on your ring’s intricacy and where you are based geographically). Based on the current gold prices (as of August 2014), my estimate of a general ring resizing job should cost around $50 – $75.

Types of Designs Which You Should Not Or Cannot Have Reworks

Even though it may be hard to accept, there are certain rings which simply cannot be resized and those which should not be reworked. For example, eternity rings that have a continuous setting of gemstones around the band are very tough to be resized.

Any attempts to do so may damage the gemstones and also distort the original beauty of the ring. This is because resizing upsets the original continuity and balance when the ring was first custom created.

brian gavin eternity wedding bands

Brian Gavin’s beautiful eternity rings give consumers a strong incentive to stay in shape.

Also, titanium, tungsten and stainless steel rings are nearly impossible to resize due to their material properties. Likewise, non-metal bands such as wood, glass or quartz also cannot be modified and reshaped.

If you have a ring which has an invisible tension setting, altering the size of the band may upset the ring’s tensile strength. This can cause durability issues as well as misalignment of the center stone if the resizing is done correctly.

On a last note, it is advisable that you check out all the necessary details with your jeweler before you make a purchase. Upfront advice will help prevent headaches down the road and avoid unnecessary trouble should the need for ring modification arises.

Vendors like Brian Gavin, White Flash and James Allen offer great after-sales services like ring polishing and resizing for free. Besides selling high quality jewelry, they go all out to take care of their customers.

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56 Comments

  1. JK-
    July 5, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    Hi, Paul –

    Thank you for your very informative blog/ebooks! I was wondering if you had any information/advice for how to resize your ring to fit a larger stone? Is that easier than purchasing the size stone you want & waiting to fit it in a setting later?

    Thanks!

  2. Paul Gian-
    July 6, 2016 at 3:52 am

    It’s better to buy the loose diamond first and to fit it into a correctly made setting later.

  3. Marlene-
    July 31, 2016 at 6:36 pm

    I recently had several of my rings resized large. After cleaning them in an ultrasound ring cleaner with about 1/16 or less of bleach and a tiny drop of dish soap the bands show exactly where the rings were enlarged. When I picked them up from the goldsmith they looked perfect. Now there is no gold on the resized areas just a dull silver. Opinion please
    .

  4. Paul Gian-
    August 1, 2016 at 1:35 am

    The resizing material or post finishing process may not have been performed well. Bring your rings back to the jeweler and let them take a look at it.

  5. Wendi J Latus-
    February 4, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    I have my mother’s wedding set and before I can wear it I have to have it resized but before I take it anywhere I would kind of like to have and estimate on how much it’s gonna cost she had like a size 5 ring and I need it sized to a 7 so I can wear it so can you please give me a estimate price I’d be looking at thank you so much —— please let me know either way thanks again

  6. Paul Gian-
    February 6, 2017 at 3:44 am

    I’ve edited your post to remove personal identifying details like your address. You can get a quote to change the size of your ring from a local jeweler near you. It’s a relatively easy job (in most cases) and shouldn’t cost much.

  7. Jason-
    March 11, 2017 at 4:16 am

    We had our 18k gold ring re sized. They said they added gold to it . Ever since the ring always losses its shape. Does this have anything to with it being resized incorrectly?

  8. Paul Gian-
    March 11, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    It could be due to poor soldering that might have affected the ring’s integrity.

  9. Phyllis-
    June 22, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    I had my wedding ring and guard resized up 1/4 size, and they suggested soldering it together. Now the guard bands on the sides are not level nor is the under gallery flush, but it fits fine. Should it take it back or leave it alone ?

  10. Paul Gian-
    June 23, 2017 at 1:42 am

    Take it back if you think the soldering job wasn’t done well. From what I think you are describing, it was a sloppy job.

  11. Rukaiyah Ferguson-
    July 18, 2017 at 12:21 am

    I inherited my grandmothers ring and its 4 sizes larger than I need it. A jeweler told me that the ring was previously resized & because it is a platinum blend they would not be able to decrease its size. How can I get a platinum ring resized to a smaller band??

  12. Paul Gian-
    July 18, 2017 at 5:40 am

    Without looking at the ring or having details, I would offer the following advice: bring it to another jeweler and get them to take a look at it.

  13. Brunetta-
    July 22, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    Hello , I need to resize a half eternity diamond band from a size 7.5 to a 5. The jeweler told me that it can be done but that my ring would then be an oval shape rather than round. What exactly does this mean ? How would it look and would it affect the diamonds and durability of the ring? Thank-you

  14. Paul Gian-
    July 26, 2017 at 6:06 am

    Eternity rings are extremely hard to resize because the diamond sizes and prongs are made to exact specifications and measurements. Any resizing will be done at the part of the shanks with no diamonds on it. I don’t have your jewelry piece in hand and can’t tell you why or how it may turn out. When in doubt, you should be asking the jeweler who is resizing the ring what the outcome will look like. If need be, get them to sketch or draw it out.

  15. donald kaplan-
    August 12, 2017 at 10:12 pm

    I want to buy a ring but it is way way to small… Is re-sizing even possible given this description?

  16. Paul Gian-
    August 25, 2017 at 8:34 am

    My reply is, why bother to buy a ring that isn’t fitting well in the first place? Save yourself the headache and get one that’s correctly sized since this is a new purchase.

  17. Fern-
    September 9, 2017 at 5:05 am

    I have a coin filigree ring that’s 19.2k. want to resize up from 6.5 to 10.5 is this possible family heirloom

  18. Paul Gian-
    September 9, 2017 at 8:09 am

    Well it depends on the filigree details. In general, I would say that it would not be possible to do so without changing its appearance.

  19. Christina-
    September 14, 2017 at 5:54 am

    Is it possible to have a ring made bigger if it is not made of a precious metal?

  20. Paul Gian-
    September 14, 2017 at 6:33 am

    I don’t see why not and it still depends on many factors like those I listed above.

  21. Laura-
    November 10, 2017 at 8:56 am

    Hi I have recently my engagement ring resized to 2 sizes bigger and now it’s a size to big for me it’s a gold band with diamonds and stones if I get it resized again will this damage the gold band or diamonds
    Thank you

  22. Paul Gian-
    November 10, 2017 at 12:39 pm

    Theoretically, if you can upsize it to be larger without affecting the sidestones and diamonds, it shouldn’t be an issue to downsize it. In reality, there could be issues. You should be talking and discussing this with the jeweler who did the job as they can further advice on a piece they worked on.

  23. Gregory Bane-
    November 21, 2017 at 8:36 am

    Hi Paul,

    I’ve received a size X (UK Size) 18ct gold men’s signet ring with a blank face that is 13 mm x 16 mm. However, my finger is much smaller and the ring must be resized to size N (UK Size). I have been to told that it could be downsized or shrunk with the caveat that the face may bend.

    How is a ring “shrunk”? And how drastically do you believe the face might bend?

    Kind regards,
    GB

  24. Paul Gian-
    November 21, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Shrinking a ring or to make it smaller typically involves using a laser welding machine or via mechanical compression. How drastically the face might bend is actually subjective. What I may deem as significant may not be to you and vice versa.

  25. Donald Smith-
    December 26, 2017 at 7:34 pm

    I bought my wife a new ring it’s a 4.5 ring size but it’s kind of hard going over her finger knuckle, but when she gets it on it fits a little loose around her finger what suggestions do you have for me

  26. Paul Gian-
    December 27, 2017 at 3:09 am

    You may want to consider the use of spring inserts in the ring. This will make the ring hold its place on the finger beyond the knuckle. See if your jeweler can perform this “upgrade” with your current setting.

  27. Crystal-
    January 15, 2018 at 10:46 am

    I have a plain stainless steel (I think) ring with no stones. It is about 1 size too small. Is there any way I can stretch it or wear the inside down (it curves inwards on the inside of the band) so that it is a little looser? Or will I have to go the jeweller for this?

  28. Paul Gian-
    January 15, 2018 at 1:21 pm

    Stainless steel is notoriously hard to work with if you do not have the specialized equipment to do so. My advice is to get the ring to a jeweler or manufacturer and let them do the resizing for you. If all else fails, you may want to consider buying a chain and place the ring in it. You can then wear it around your neck like a pendant.

  29. Tanya MacDonald-
    January 22, 2018 at 4:22 pm

    I am looking at purchasing a new ring which will require sizing.
    a mens white gold band with white diamonds and black diamonds – from a size 10 down to an 8 1/4 – do they take gold “out” of the band to make it smaller? If so wouldn’t that ‘decrease’ the price of the ring since the weight of the ring will be less in the finished product?

  30. Paul Gian-
    January 23, 2018 at 1:49 am

    Let me response by asking a question in return: why are you purchasing a NEW ring that requires resizing in the first place? If you are getting it “new”, get it at the correct size to begin with or get to jeweler to make a new one that fits.

    Technically, removing gold to down size the band will result in lesser material in the ring. So, you are right in that regard. What you have not factored in is the man hours and labour required to perform this service. The removal of a little metal (in material cost) is not going to outweigh the cost of labour to do that.

  31. Amy-
    February 9, 2018 at 8:23 am

    I have a wedding band 14K, 6mm wide and with a diamond cut. It was shrinked for 2 sizes. When I picked up the ring it was rounded (no diamond cut) and the ingravement from the inside was barely visible. Is that normal? I wasn’t warned it will be that way after resizing and I was shocked when I was picking up the ring.
    PS. The part of gold was cut out and about that I was aware of previously.

  32. Paul Gian-
    February 9, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    I am not sure what you mean. Are you saying that there was a previous engraving on the inner shanks and that it disappeared after the resizing? If it is what you mean, then the removal could be caused by the polishing of the ring after shrinking it down.

  33. Amy-
    February 9, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    Hi again,

    Yes, there was an engravement on the inside of the wedding band, a very good visible engravement. Now it is barely visible. Yes, it was polished there, but the surface of the inside of the band is not as shiny as it was before, more ‘foggy’ I would say and I can see the smudges. Sorry don’t know how to describe it. And the engravement is barely visible. Didn’t expect something like that could happen after resizing.

    The other thing is that the ;diamond cut’ edges ( 45°) are no longer there, the edges are rounded now. Is that a normal thing after shrinking the band size?

  34. Paul Gian-
    February 9, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    This is something you would have to bring up to the person performing the job. If it wasn’t as shiny as before, it means they did do the job properly. For white gold, after polishing, it is customary for it to undergo a replating process with rhodium. As for the edges, it is likely sanded down during the touching up process. Unfortunately, I am not of good help here without seeing the piece.

  35. Amy-
    February 9, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    The band is made from yellow gold, sorry for not mentioning this.
    Thank you for all your replies.

  36. Paul Gian-
    February 11, 2018 at 7:44 am

    They probably didn’t do a good job in the finishing to polish it up properly.

  37. Jennifer-
    March 29, 2018 at 12:41 am

    Greetings.. I have a 14MM wide artcarved ring that is 14K Yellow gold with diamonds aligning each outer side (almost looks like 3 bands) but the diamonds run along the top to mid finger on both sides of the ring. It’s currently a 9.5 but I would like it to be a 7 to fit myself. Do you believe it is possible?

  38. Paul Gian-
    March 29, 2018 at 1:33 am

    It should be possible to downsize the ring. But don’t expect it to have no repercussion on the final appearance of the ring details.

  39. Barbara-
    April 19, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    Because of an enlarged knuckle I need to have my wedding ring cut off. Can it be repaired to wear on another finger?

  40. Paul Gian-
    April 20, 2018 at 3:11 am

    All rings can be “repaired”. It’s a matter of how it would look like after the work is done. Much of this is dependent on how the ring was sawn off and the original design of the setting.

  41. Alma-
    April 20, 2018 at 8:43 am

    I recently was given a ring from a friend but it is a few sizes too big. The shank is very plain and meets a sort of swirling design in the front followed by an opal in the center of it. On the inside of the ring it is engraved with ‘925’ which i think means it is made from Sterling Silver. How much would it cost to resize? And could they given the metal? The ring is a 9, and needs to be resized down to a 6.5. I can link a photo if need be.

  42. Paul Gian-
    April 20, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    Bring it to your local jeweler and ask for a quote. Sterling silver is definitely resizable but details like jewelry design may impact the final outcome.

  43. Pat-
    April 25, 2018 at 11:56 am

    Morning, My friend and I would both like to have our engagement rings resized. We have heard stories about switching out the diamond if you’re not there. Can the ring be enlarged while we watch?

  44. Paul Gian-
    April 25, 2018 at 4:16 pm

    Depending on ring design and equipment on hand, it may not be possible to get the ring resizing done the same day you bring it in.

    Read: https://beyond4cs.com/care-and-maintenance/how-to-avoid-diamond-switching/

    If you don’t trust the jeweler, why are you even thinking of getting them to perform the work to re size the ring?

  45. Fuma-
    July 28, 2018 at 6:06 am

    Hello,

    I have resized a platinium ring, once size up. The initial weight was 5.5g but it’s now 4.6g. Is it normal? The jeweler said that it’s due to the resizing process. I thought that increasing the size would involve either to stretch (same weight) or to add more metal (after cutting the ring).

    Thank you

  46. Paul Gian-
    July 28, 2018 at 7:03 am

    Ask the jeweler what was done during the upsizing of the ring that caused the reduction in weight of the ring.

  47. Fuma-
    July 29, 2018 at 2:34 pm

    Thank you for your answer.
    This is the explanation: “Because there would be consumption during the resizing process (we heat it up and craft). It is difficult to add back the platinum because the whole shape would be different. Therefore, we don’t suggest customers to resize very often, it would make the ring lighter and lighter”

  48. Paul Gian-
    July 30, 2018 at 3:18 am

    It would make sense depending on the design of your ring. I would say that if it is a solitaire design, then the ring shouldn’t become lighter and lighter in weight.

  49. Carrie-
    September 3, 2018 at 3:21 am

    About a year ago, I had my wedding ring (classic with 5 diamonds across set in platinum on a gold band) resized up about a size. There was no discussion of the method of resizing, they just measured me for my proper new size. I had not been able to wear the ring for some years. When I received the ring back and paid $90 I was shocked at how thin my ring was. I have never ever seen a ring so thin at the back (the palm side). However, I assumed that they must know what they were doing as they are so reputable and was delighted to get my ring back and wear it finally, so I did not complain. Here I am a year later and the ring started getting rougher and rougher at the bottom middle, finally upon inspection I saw it was starting to break and now it has actually broken completely at the thinnest part at the back or bottom middle (palm side). I am really disappointed. When I brought my ring to be sized up, I just assumed they would cut and add gold for it to fit me. I never thought they would just stretch it out to the point of being thin enough to break. This is a reputable local jeweler, although I have been reading complaints online lately. I called and let them know my problem and the owner himself called me back and was a bit annoyed, asking me why I did not complain at the time I picked it up. I told him I was not a complainer but had been shocked at the thinness of the ring, but assumed they had done a good job because of their reputation – afterall, I know little to nothing about resizing rings (except what I just read here) – they are the experts I trusted. I also was happy just to get my ring back wearable. He insists on a personal meeting with me, so I hope to resolve it. I am just sad and disappointed.

  50. Paul Gian-
    September 3, 2018 at 3:30 am

    Carrie, these things do happen from time to time as consumers may not fully understand what happens to a ring during resizing. Look on the bright side; the jeweler wants to talk and I think they are trying to make things right. That’s a good sign to me rather than someone trying to absolve blame onto you. So, go to the meeting with an open mind and I think things will work out eventually.

  51. Jolene-
    September 23, 2018 at 6:48 am

    I purchased a ring made to order. When it arrived the company made it an L1/2 instead of I1/2 which we originally ordered & paid for. When we asked for the ring to be remade we were advised they would resize it and have it back in a week – Ignoring our request to have it remade correctly. The ring has diamonds half way around each side with a setting on top. It has been 6 months, the band has stretched a considerable amount and a diamond fell out of the band. When i took it back to the shop they sent it off to the jeweler who completes the work. They have since emailed to advise there are now 3 diamonds missing and they can fix it “as best they can” They have also requested me to pay for the fixing of the ring.

    Would the bend in the gold and missing diamonds/ loose diamonds have anything to do with the fact the company resized my ring from an L1/2 down to I1/2? Band is 18 carat white gold with round brilliant diamonds on the band.

    I am so disappointed they would not remake the ring in the first place and now fear this can happen again

  52. Paul Gian-
    September 23, 2018 at 9:53 am

    Well, this is the kind of things you get when doing business with people who don’t stand behind their product. Readers here don’t get nonsense like this with reliable vendors. Getting a refund outright from the start if you suspected workmanship issues should have been the right thing. Diamonds can fall out of their bands for all types of reasons and resizing could be one of them. Without seeing the ring in person, I can’t offer any constructive advice.

  53. Fhaye Mouz-
    September 27, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Hi there Paul :) My name is faye from the philippines have been seeing and reading all your comments & blog regarding with choosing the right wedding bands.

    I and my fiancè is struggling what to get.

    First, we need to work on a budget we’re both middle class and no huge amounts of money to buy expensive wedding bands. We’re going to have a civil wedding first then eventually church wedding.

    Now, my question is…is it advisable to buy a one time wedding ring like platinum (expensive) instead of buying white gold for now and platinum eventually…pls we really need your advice and what are the “real” pros & cons of getting a platinum? I was told at the local jewelry shop that platinum is hard to resize compare to white gold…pls help- thank you in advance :)

  54. Paul Gian-
    September 27, 2018 at 8:22 am

    My advice is to plan ahead and buy exactly what you want in the long term. Upgrading from one material to another material is really unnecessary it it complicates things. Your jeweler is feeding you bullshit. Platinum is not hard to resize. Aside from preventing allergic reactions and a denser weight, there are practically no other benefits of paying for a platinum wedding ring.

  55. Dave Sutton-
    October 3, 2018 at 10:04 pm

    We recently had my wife’s wedding ring repaired. It has a 1.25 marquis and three smaller diamonds on either side in a channel setting. One of the diamonds had fallen out and some of the others were loose. When we picked up the repaired ring it would not fit over my wife’s knuckle? Now the jeweler wants us to pay to have it resized. We said we would wait a few days to see if it was simply a swollen finger. Should we be suspicious? Would a jeweler use 14kt white gold from a ring for resetting diamonds…

  56. Paul Gian-
    October 4, 2018 at 3:28 am

    Theoretically speaking, repairing a fallen out diamond should have zero effect on sizing as they are completely separate issues. Examine the setting at the repair area to see if you can see anything out of the norm.

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