The Symbolism Behind Each Ring Finger: Ring Finger Meaning Explained!

Briana Briana 06 Apr 2021 5278

Have you ever looked into the symbolism behind each ring finger? You’ve probably heard a lot about what the symbolism is for your ring finger, but did you know that there is meaning for each finger, and both for men and women? 

Do you realize that you might be sending out a certain signal or representing something just by wearing a ring on a certain finger?

While we personally believe that you should express yourself and wear all of your jewelry, including your rings, how you want, we love researching meaning and symbolism connected with things like that.

what fingers to wear your rings on

Whether you choose to change how you wear your rings is up to you, but aren’t you interested to learn what each finger symbolizes?

We will start with women, but keep reading to learn about the symbolism for men as well!

While you may associate rings more with women than men (besides of course wedding rings for men), lately there has been a bit of a shift i,n style and culture and we find that more and more men are wearing rings besides their wedding rings.

Who says women should have all the fun when it comes to accessorizing? Not us!  

Left vs. Right Hands

In addition to various fingers having unique meanings, sometimes the hand on which you wear your ring matters too! For most of us, we think of that when we think of wedding rings going on the left ring finger.

However, did you know that some people wear their wedding rings on their right hands? And did you know that there are other fingers that have different meanings on the left vs. the right hand? 

Ring finger meanings

In most cases, there is not a difference between the fingers on the left and the right hand, but if there is, we will include it below.

Some people also believe that wearing rings on your dominant hand symbolizes strength and action, whereas rings on the non-dominant hand are associated with creativity and imagination. We bet you didn’t know that before!  


Left Pinky Finger

Wearing a ring on your left pinky finger is a great symbol for trust and emotion. Remember being a kid and making a ‘pinky promise’ with your friend or sibling?

It turns out that symbolism didn’t exist just with children, it has persisted, and now people wear rings on these fingers as a symbol of trust and connection! 

The pinky is also often associated with creativity. In fact, if you are looking for some creative energy to help you, consider wearing a pinky ring on your dominant hand!

People believe this can help provide you with more creativity and to help get past a creative block. 

Right Pinky Finger

While the same meaning of trust, emotion, and creativity exists with the right pinky finger as well, it is also well known that professional rings are worn on the right pinky finger.

pinky ring finger meaning

This is a great way to show off your professional status, especially in the fields of ecology and engineering, where you wear the ring as a sign that you have received your degree.  

Left Ring Finger

Of course, the most common association with fingers is the left ring finger. This is true for western cultures, where almost always a married or engaged woman wears a ring on her left ring finger.

Once she gets married, she will typically wear her engagement ring and a wedding band. Therefore, the left ring finger symbolizes love and devotion.

Ever wondered why this finger landed the position of holding the wedding rings? It comes from an ancient Roman belief that there was a vein in the left ring finger that traveled directly to the heart. When you think of it that way, it makes sense, and is quite romantic! 

Alternatively, some women (and men) may choose to wear a ring on this finger before marriage. In this case, the ring is typically called a purity ring or chastity ring and shows a person’s devotion to abstinence before getting married. 

Right Ring Finger

Several cultures actually wear their wedding rings on the right ring finger, did you know that? It’s true!

Most commonly, people from Russia, India, Germany wear their engagement and wedding rings on the right ring finger instead of the left.

It is interesting to note that even though some cultures may choose the right hand over the left, the ring finger is still the finger chosen to symbolize love and devotion. 

Middle Finger

There is not a standard meaning or symbolism behind the middle finger. However, some people associate it with balance or harmony since it is the finger right in the middle of the hand.

Because this is also typically the longest finger for most women, it can also be associated with strength or power. Power and balance, not a bad combination!

middle finger meaning

We may just start wearing rings on our middle fingers more often. Just like there isn’t a common middle finger meaning, this finger is also one of the least popular options for wearing a ring.

While that is true, we like wearing a cocktail, statement, or name ring on our middle fingers to really show off the ring and to have it feel nice on the hand.  

Index Finger

When you think about this finger symbolism, it actually makes a lot of sense; the index finger is associated with power and leading a group!

Think about what you do when you delegate a task, give a presentation, or tell someone what to do or where to go. Which finger is usually involved? The index or pointer finger!

Wearing rings on this finger shows a certain level of confidence and power, and you are likely to be someone who enjoys leading others.

If you feel like you want a little confidence boost, consider wearing a ring on your non-dominant index finger. Some people think that will help give you the power you need to feel comfortable speaking up and leading!

Wearing the ring on your dominant hand simply reinforces the power you already have within you.

In addition to the symbol of power and leading, people also choose to wear larger statement rings on this finger (which also fits the meaning of the finger when you think about it.) Consider wearing a cocktail ring or even a class ring on this finger.

Especially if you are wearing a ring like a wedding band on your ring finger, you won’t want to put a large ring right next to it on your middle finger. Go for the index finger instead. 

Thumb Finger

Similar to the middle finger, there is not a lot of common symbolism or association with the thumb ring meaning.

However, thumb rings are a fairly common spot for a ring as opposed to the middle finger. Some people associate thumb rings and the thumb in general with independence, self-awareness, and being assertive.

Thumb finger meaning

Do you like to march to the beat of your own drum? For those with independent spirits, it would make sense if you tend to wear thumb rings! 

Another practical benefit of wearing a ring on this finger is that it is separated from all the rest of the fingers.

If you want to wear multiple rings but don’t want them to touch, a thumb is a great option that won’t interfere with any other rings. The thumb stands alone, just as you do, and independent thinker!  


Left Pinky Finger 

Here’s another instance where the hand matters! The left pinky finger has been associated with a few different meanings over the years.

Back in the 19th and early 20th century, men would wear their wedding rings on their left pinky fingers. In fact, you would wear two rings on your left pinky finger to signify that you were married. The bottom ring would be your wedding ring, and the top ring would be a signet ring.

pinky finger ring for men

There is also an association with the left pinky ring and a potential connection to organized crime rings like the mafia.

Popular mafia films and tv shows often depicted mafia members wearing rings on their pinky fingers, which has helped to keep this association in people’s minds. 

Right Pinky Finger

Just like with women, the right pinky is the spot for professional rings. This remains the most common location for these types of rings.

In addition to professional rings, pinky rings in general on men are considered more of a ‘flashy’ destination for a ring, and a great way to show off a bolder ring if you’ve got one.

If you’ve got a statement ring and want to show it off, wear it on your pinky! 

Ring Finger: Left and Right

The symbolism here is the same for men as it is for women. The ring finger is the finger of love! In this case, men typically do not wear engagement rings, but they will have a wedding ring, and that will be placed on their ring finger.

Based on the specific cultural traditions, he may wear the ring on his left or right hand. In America and many western cultures, the ring will be on the left hand.

In some places, like Germany, India, and Russia, most men will wear the ring on their right hand. 

Middle Finger

Similar to the meaning with women, the middle finger tends to represent balance, but there is not as strong of a tie as there is with other fingers like the ring finger.

While this is an uncommon location in general, it is even more uncommon with men than with women to wear a ring on this finger.

However, for those who do, it represents balance and strength as well, as it is the largest finger on the hand. 

Index Finger

The index finger (both on the right and left hand) is definitely a symbol of power, and therefore, a man wearing a ring on this finger shows off his powerful status.

In fact, in years past, men would wear rings on their index fingers to show off their social status and to symbolize wealth. While that is not typically followed today, the symbol of power remains with this finger.

ring finger meaning for men

If you have something like a family ring or class ring, you might consider wearing it on this finger. It is also a convenient location that is not right next to your ring finger, which may have a wedding band.

However, because this finger is used frequently, many men may find it cumbersome to have a large ring here.  

Thumb Finger

Finally, similar to the index finger, wearing a thumb ring is a sure sign of power. In years past, being able to wear a thumb ring would indicate that you did not have to do any hard labor, a sure sign of wealth.

Today, it remains a symbol of power and status and is definitely a rare choice for men. If you do wear a thumb ring, you likely have a lot of confidence and aren’t afraid to show off your sense of style.

Rings on this finger are almost exclusively a fashion choice, as you would not be able to easily wear something like a class ring or family ring here, and wedding bands are never worn here. You wear a ring here because you like it! 


Did you learn something new today when it comes to ring finger meaning? We hope so! Whether you choose to follow the various ring finger meanings or not, it is still interesting to learn about the history and symbolism of rings, fingers, and even hands.

Think about the rings that you currently wear; do they actually match up with any of the common meanings? Are you a loyalist who wears a pinky ring? Or a strong leader who wears an index finger ring? Maybe an independent spirit with a thumb ring?!

Whatever your preference or rings are, make sure to know your ring finger meaning!