The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Engagement Rings For Different Finger & Hand Sizes

engagement rings on fingers

When it comes to buying the perfect engagement ring, you may want to consider your recipient’s finger type and hand shape before choosing a design. Does she have short fingers? Long fingers? Large knuckles? Petite hands?

Depending on the structure of her hands and fingers, some designs will look amazing while others will fall short. In today’s write up, our goal is to take the stress out of finding the perfect ring and help you decide which is the best style for her.

For your convenience, we had listed navigational links that will bring you directly to the corresponding sections that interest you:

   
   

And if there’s any setting that you are interested in, simply click on the image to see full details of the ring!

Where is the Best Place to Buy an Engagement Ring?

When it comes to buying a diamond engagement ring, having transparent shopping processes and accessibility to tangible data is key to making educated decisions. Here are the top 3 retailers who offer reliability, good prices and great craftsmanship!

     
Retailer Why Choose Them?
James Allen Customer orientated and intuitive 360° video listings.
White Flash Super ideal cut diamonds and quality designer settings.
Blue Nile Best selection of diamonds and competitive prices.
     

If this is your first time shopping for an engagement ring, make sure you read this step by step guide first. For the complete list of recommended places to to buy a diamond ring, click here.

Engagement Rings for Short Fingers

If her fingers are short (a rough gauge would be fingers which are shorter than the palm), the ideal engagement ring should help accentuate her fingers by making them appear longer and leaner

A simple design would also be preferred as complicated designs would easily overwhelm the finger.

One of the easiest ways to do this is to select a center diamond with an elongated shape like the marquise, pear or oval. Doing so would help the wearer’s finger look longer and flatter her hands.

marquise diamond solitaire ring for short finger type
pear halo diamond ring for short fingers

Elongated diamond shapes can create the illusion of length.

The use of a narrow or thinner band would also help create a contrasting appearance by elongating the length of the fingers.

thin band petite setting with 1.5mm

French cut pavé engagement ring with a petite shank for maximum elegance and bling.

What You Should Avoid For Short Fingers – Stay away from thick bands, large size diamonds and squarish diamond shapes like Asscher or princess cuts. Basically, you don’t want designs that reinforce a squatty appearance.


Engagement Ring for Long Fingers

If you are blessed with long fingers, you have a great advantage when it comes to buying jewelry.

Whether it is a simple solitaire ring or an elaborate design, having longer fingers means your hand shape will naturally add an oomph and make most styles look great.

Besides round diamonds, you can also explore fancy shapes like princess or cushion cut diamonds. I would also like to highlight that lengthier fingers look amazing with extravagant rings.

extravagant diamond ring verragio longer length digit
tacori sculptured ring for long slender fingers

Highly intricate ring details like these 2 examples here will make her stand out!

With long fingers, you have alot of leeway to be wild and daring.

Besides intricate settings, you could also choose something bold and make a fashion statement out of it. Here are 2 examples of rings that would be hard to pull off with other finger types but would look great on hers!

wide band thickness solitaire ring plain
tension setting unique one of a kind ring

Make heads turn with outspoken ring designs like these!

What You Should Avoid For Long Fingers – If she has long and slender fingers, you might want to give designs that further emphasize length a miss. Thin, elongated diamond shapes like marquise or pear may make the finger look disproportionately long.


Engagement Rings for Stubby And Chubby Fingers

Thick fingers are the trickiest types of hands to work with. As the fingers are generally wider, you would require more finger coverage from the ring or diamond. Otherwise, the ring would look underwhelming.

For guys with a bigger budget, you can probably afford to buy a large carat size diamond to mitigate the problem. If you don’t have a generous budget to work with, a clustered ring like a halo or a geometric design would offer cost-effective solutions.

On a personal note, my wife has thick and short fingers (size 7). Here’s a comparison of how two different style of engagement rings on her hands would look like.

On the left is a plain, simple platinum solitaire design with a 0.7ct round diamond. And on the right, she’s wearing a 1ct floating halo ring I recently purchased from Blue Nile.

small size diamond engagement ring on thick chubby fingers
halo engagement ring on fat chubby fingers

A halo ring design makes the diamond appear bigger than it is.

For large and fat fingers, one great way to make a ring stand out is to select split shank designs. Similarly, a raised prong setting can create an illusion of depth which makes the finger appear narrower.

split shank engagement ring on fat fingers

Split shank designs can cover a bigger area of a fat finger and turn heads at the same time!

What You Should Avoid For Fat Fingers – Thick bands, large size diamonds and squarish diamond shapes like Asscher or Princess cuts. Basically, you want to stay away from designs that reinforce a squatty appearance. Small solitaire rings which reveal more skin should be avoided as well.


Engagement Rings for Petite Fingers

Thin fingers are great for many things. Not only are you fingers more nimble, they are also very elegant without trying. What’s more, skinnier fingers will make smaller sized diamonds appear bigger and this means you don’t have to break the bank for a decent looking ring.

verragio cathedral engagement ring for petite hands
swan solitaire elegant engagement ring for tiny hands

Smaller carat sizes are great for budget and perfect on a skinny finger.

Pave settings are also ideal candidates to suit slim fingers. Combined with a softer diamond shape like the round or cushion cut, it can do wonders to prevent an overbearing look.

petite vintage style diamond ring with leaf motifs for small size hands
rose gold twisted halo ring flower engagement rings on hands

Elegant ring designs that flatter tiny hands.

What You Should Avoid For Tiny Fingers – Less is more when it comes to petite fingers. Large size diamonds can make your finger look disproportionate. You should also stay away from extravagant designs as they can overload the hand easily.


Engagement Rings for Large Knuckles

Large knuckles present two main problems; they can cause fitting issues and stand out as sore features on her hands. To detract attention away from the knuckles, you can make use of 3-stone rings to add volume to the finger and provide a better balanced look.

3 stone engagement ring for big knuckles
3 stone engagement ring for big knuckles

For women with extremely large and defined knuckles, you can also draw attention away from them by choosing a ring with a bolder and wider band design. Here are some ring ideas to help you do that…

thick band engagement ring on hand photo

Heavier looking bands complement fingers with big knuckles really well.

What You Should Avoid With Big Knuckles – Avoid thin bands as they will make your knuckles stand out even more due to the sharp contrast in size!


Engagement Rings for Large Hands

Similar to large fingers, a bigger hand will make a small size ring look awkward and out of place. As a result, a larger hand will generally require bigger finger coverage (e.g larger size center stones). If you have a smaller budget, consider using settings with accent stones or pave side stones to accentuate the ring.

halo engagement ring on large hands

Besides emphasizing the size of the center stone, the melees add a dimension of bling and sparkle too!

Chunkier designs like split shank rings or fancy geometric rings can create a heavier look to balance a bigger sized hand. You can also take advantage of vintage style rings as they work well to complement larger hands.

vintage ring designs for big hands
twisted twin pave shank for enormous hands

What You Should Avoid With Large Hands – Proportion matters! Narrow rings that show too much skin and overly slim bands (below 1.8mm) will look underwhelming. You should also stay away from delicate or minimalist designs as they will look unflattering on the finger.


Engagement Rings for Small Hands

If she has a petite frame and little hands, the good news is that diamonds with smaller carat sizes will look proportionally better on her. Simple solitaire designs or delicate bands with round or princess cut diamonds are best suited for her hands.

carina twirly solitaire ring for little hand shape
6 prong single stone ring for smaller hand shapes

Solitaire rings are evergreen and budget-friendly!

If you had followed the blog for some time, you will know I’m a fan of pave settings. Below are 2 of my favorite pave settings that have thin shanks.

dainty pave engagement rings rings for tiny hands
elegant rings for small hands and little fingers

Pavé settings offer extra bling without going over the top.

What You Should Avoid For Petite Hands – Bold statement designs tend to overpower small, dainty hands. You should also avoid overly large size diamonds.


Conclusion – Which Style Best Suits your Finger?

So there you have it. We hope this article has showed you how to choose an engagement ring to suit different hand and finger types.

Remember, this writeup should only serve as a guideline and not be regarded as “hard and fast” rules. Besides finger/hand shape, you should also take into account her personal tastes and lifestyle.

At the end of the day, her preferences is what matters. If there’s a particular design that really speaks to her, go for it!

Find a style that she will enjoy wearing for many years to come. With that, I hope you enjoy yourself and have fun in the shopping process! Feel free to bump me an email or drop a comment below if you need help with a selection.

Are you ready to start browsing ring settings and designs? We recommend vendors like James Allen, White Flash and Blue Nile where you get to cherry pick from 1000s of beautiful ring settings.

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8 Comments

  1. Ronda-
    January 23, 2017 at 8:55 pm

    I went into a local store here in Austin to shop around for engagement rings for petite hands. I literally tried on all the designs that the shop has but couldn’t find something I like. Would you know of any jeweler in this area that specializes in such designs?

  2. Paul Gian-
    January 24, 2017 at 12:37 am

    Have you read the corresponding section above? White Flash has a physical showroom in Texas, Sugarland. Get in touch with them beforehand to make an appointment. They do have a number of suitable engagement rings for petite hands beyond the 2 I showed as examples in the writeup.

  3. Anthony E. Cornett-
    May 3, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    My fiancee is a pretty plump woman and I’m looking at engagement rings for fat fingers that cost less than $3,000. Can you point me in the right direction for vintage designs and styles?

  4. Paul Gian-
    May 6, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    $3000 for a vintage style would be an extremely tight budget to work with. Antique style settings typically cost more due to the craftsmanship for intricate detailing. In my opinion, the best engagement rings for big fingers are those with volume and bulky appearances.

    Blue Nile has a couple of nice designs and I picked out two for you to consider.

    https://beyond4cs.com/go/bn-setting-62758/
    https://beyond4cs.com/go/bn-setting-62755/

  5. david-
    September 21, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    I was browsing online and looking at rings for large fingers with the purpose of combining it with an emerald cut diamond. My gf has a finger size of 8 and somewhat longish digits by your definition. I am flexible with spending around $10k and if I can spend less, that would be best. I would also be willing to pay more for the right ring. Can you offer some suggestions?

  6. Paul Gian-
    September 22, 2017 at 2:45 am

    Here are some links to suitable rings for large fingers:
    https://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/halo/14k-white-gold-pave-set-engagement-ring-emerald-center-item-31884
    https://www.jamesallen.com/engagement-rings/three-stone/14k-white-gold-three-stone-emerald-and-pave-set-diamond-engagement-ring-item-22633

    If you need help with picking out a center stone, bump me another note. Since you are browsing around, my advice is to narrow down to the setting you want first. This would give you a better idea on your remaining budget for the diamond.

  7. vance-
    April 3, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    I’m really thankful for your sharing of knowledge and help. I’m still in the midst of figuring out how to choose and engagement ring that suits her hands. She has really dark skin tone and I’m not sure whether I should get a yellow gold or platinum setting.

    Do you have another guide on selecting suitable jewelry for different color skin tones? If you do, I would love to read it. Otherwise, I hope to get your opinion as soon as possible.

  8. Paul Gian-
    April 3, 2018 at 5:24 pm

    Thank you for your feedback. Unfortunately, I haven’t written anything on skin tones yet and I would put that as a topic to work on.

    And now to answer your question, white gold or platinum would look better on darker skin tones. However, the choice of color is really up to what she likes. Have you asked her about what she wants?

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