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What’s the Difference Between Engagement and Wedding Rings? | Rare Carat

Engagement and Wedding Rings

You wear an engagement ring while you’re engaged, and a wedding ring only after the wedding… right? But, what if you don’t want to add a wedding ring - or want to wear it on your right hand, instead of stacking it with the bling you received when your partner popped the question?

As wedding traditions continue to change and evolve, so do couples’ thoughts on rings, their meanings and how they “should” be worn.

Modern tradition dictates that an engagement ring (generally with one stone as the focus) is given upon the proposal of marriage. This is the ring worn for the pre-wedding events and the social soirees announcing the nearly-newlyweds intent to wed! 

Then, as this tradition goes, a wedding ring is chosen (it usually complements the engagement ring, and coordinates with the partners’ ring as well) to stack on the same, left-hand ring finger.

Pieces of this tradition that seem to hold true today:

An engagement ring is what’s in that little velvet box upon the proposal

A wedding ring is received during the wedding ceremony

Now, whether you choose to have a wedding ring at all, or which hand you prefer to wear it on… those are details that are up for interpretation! 

Many couples are kicking tradition to the curb. Wearing only an engagement ring, even after the wedding (gasp) or choosing to rock an extra sparkling wedding band but on the right hand (whoa), is becoming widely accepted.

Beyond individuality (and just bucking the system - you know it’s fun!), there are a few bonus benefits to breaking tradition...

Skipping the wedding ring can mean having more money to put toward the engagement ring of your dreams. Even a simple gold wedding ring costs around $1000, that’s a nice chunk of change to add to your diamond, put toward your partner's ring, spend on the wedding or save!  

More Options!

Swapping from stacking your wedding ring with your engagement ring (maybe choose your right-hand ring finger?) can mean you can go bigger and bolder with the size of the diamonds on your band! In this case, you don’t have to worry with rings matching, stacking or competing on the one, dainty finger!

So, while your grandma might cringe at the idea you’re not rocking a traditional engagement-ring-wedding-band-stack on your left-hand ring finger… We say, you do you. After all, these rings are a representation of your love and choice to marry your partner… honor that however you see fit.

Jenny Beres
Jenny Beres
Jenny is an experienced copywriter and recovering diamond-aholic. She’s been writing for Rare Carat since 2016.