Buying Tips / Jewelry

Ring Resizing Guide: How to Resize a Ring!

Briana Briana 18 Dec 2019 226

If you find yourself in this situation with a ring that doesn’t fit, thankfully, you aren’t out of luck. Ring resizing is very common and is your best option for getting your ring to be your perfect size.

Don’t you just love getting a new piece of jewelry? Whether it’s something your purchase for yourself, a gift, an engagement, or inheriting a piece from a family member, it is always exciting!

The one downside, however, is if the jewelry is the wrong size! This is especially true when it comes to rings. A wrong sized ring either simply won’t fit on your finger, or if it is too big, can easily slip off and get lost. Either way, not a great situation!

how to resize a ring
Source: QuickJewelryRepairs

However, as you can imagine, when it comes to ring resizing, it isn’t the easiest process, and there’s a lot you should know before deciding to resize a ring, especially if you are dealing with something antique or very intricate. 

Here is everything you need to know about ring resizing, including how to properly size a ring in the first place, what the resizing process is like, how much it costs, and so much more!  

How to Size a Ring

If you can, your best case scenario is to purchase a ring in the right size from the very beginning.

Obviously, if you are inheriting a ring from a family member that is not an option, but for new pieces, you are buying, you should really take the time to make sure the ring fits you properly.

Whether you have a professional ring sizer to use (say at a store) or if you measure at home, here are our top tips for ensuring you get the right-sized ring:

📏  We recommend measuring your finger towards the middle of the day, versus early in the morning or late at night.

Your fingers tend to swell and shrink over the day, so measuring at the midpoint of the day is a good way to get an average size. 

📏  Make sure your hands are not overly hot or cold, as the temperature can impact your finger size greatly.

As you likely know, cold temperatures will make your fingers shrink; warm temperatures will make your fingers swell. 

📏  If you notice a large variation with your fingers, we recommend measuring them when you do notice that they are swollen so that you can make sure you get a ring size that is large enough.

You would rather the ring be a little bigger than a little too small. Too small of a ring may not fit on your finger or cut off circulation.

📏  If you find your ring size to be in between sizes, go with the larger size, especially if you are shopping for a ring with a larger band. The larger the width of the ring, the more important your finger size is in terms of a size that is too small.

You may be able to squeeze on a thin ring that is a little small, but that gets more difficult the wider the ring is. 

📏  Always measure the finger you will be wearing the ring on. This may sound obvious, but sometimes people will measure the same finger but on their opposite hand (say your ring finger on your right hand instead of your left). Don’t do that!

Most people have different sized hands. While the difference is typically small, it can be enough to throw off your ring size, and you may end up with a ring that is too small or too large. 

📏  Take into consideration your knuckle size. If the base of your finger is a lot smaller than your knuckle size, you might end up with a ring that you can’t actually fit onto your finger.

Measure the size of both the base of your finger and the size at the knuckle and go with a size that is in the middle; that way, you should be able to fit the ring over your knuckle but with it still fitting securely on your finger.

Ring Resizing

If it is already too late and you have in your possession a ring that needs to be resized, that is okay!

Perhaps you inherited it from a family member, or maybe it is a ring that used to fit you but no longer does due to weight gain or loss. No matter the reason, if you want to resize the ring, you do have some options. 

Thankfully, rings can be sized up or down. Most jewelers agree that the maximum size change you can do on a ring is two sizes.

That is a pretty significant change, so for many people, you will find that you can get a ring resized to wear it comfortably. 

resizing engagement ring
Source: KimberFire

Wondering why you can only resize a ring a max of two sizes? It has to do with the pressure on the ring. If you stress the ring too much, you can risk damaging it, which you do not want to do!

Before deciding to resize a ring, really make sure that it needs to be done. See if your fingers happen to be swollen when you are testing the ring. 

We also recommend wearing the ring for a few days to get used to it. You may think the ring is too tight simply because you aren’t used to wearing it. Test it out for a few days before deciding to have it resized. 

Exceptions

Before deciding to resize your ring you also need to be aware of the types of rings and metals that are not able to be resized.

While plenty of rings can be resized, unfortunately, there are some styles and types that are simply too difficult to work with. 

Here’s a rundown of common types of rings or metals that cannot be resized:

Gemstone bands: If you have a ring that has gemstones around the entire band (typically called an eternity band), it will be very difficult to resize, and also very risky as some of the gemstones may get damaged in the process.

Tension rings: Tension rings have gemstones that are held in place by pressure instead of in a typical prong setting.

For this reason, resizing this type of ring is nearly impossible, as you would be upsetting the pressure of the ring, which may cause the stone to fall out or to be misaligned. 

Intricate design work: If you have a ring that features an intricate design that carries around the entirety of the ring, it will be very hard to resize. Additional metal cannot simply be added to the ring, and taking the metal out would throw off the design of the ring.

The ring would essentially have to be re-made to recreate the design, which may be nearly impossible, or at the very least, incredibly expensive. 

Titanium, stainless steel, and tungsten: These are the metals that you cannot resize, as they are simply too hard to work with. You don’t typically find these metals used in women’s rings, but they are fairly common in men’s rings.

If you are shopping for a ring made of any of these metals, be sure you are getting the correct size the first time. 

Resizing a Ring Down

If you need to resize a ring to a smaller size, you are in luck. This is typically an easier process and is almost always cheaper than resizing a ring up.

In this case, no additional materials are needed, and instead, some metal simply needs to be removed, and the ring soldered back together. 

sizing down a ring
Source: Amazon

In the majority of cases, the jeweler will remove a portion of the ring that is not visible (say the bottom part where it is just the plain band) and then will join the ring back together and make sure the ring is still symmetrical and perfectly round.

When done properly, you should not even be able to tell that the ring has been resized.

The entire ring, and especially the portion that was altered, will be smoothed out and polished to ensure you cannot see any marks that the ring has been cut and resized. 

As you can imagine, if you have a plain portion of your band, this will be a very easy process. It gets more complicated if you are dealing with things like an ornate design or gemstones, which is why in many cases, jewelers will not resize those types of rings where designs have to be matched up when soldered together.

Resizing a Ring Up

sizing a ring up
Source: RockMyDiamond

While it is possible to make a ring larger, it is a more complicated process and will almost always cost more money because you are adding in some type of precious metal like gold, white gold, or platinum. 

In some cases, you can get away with simply stretching a ring if you only need about a half size change. You cannot stretch a ring more than half a size for fear of the metal getting too thin where it could easily break. 

If you need to go up more than a half a size, the ring will have to be cut and a new piece of metal put into the ring. If the bottom of your ring is a plain band, this isn’t typically too difficult of a process.

The one consideration is if you have a unique shade of metal, typically say a rose gold band, as rose gold can vary in color. You will want the new piece of metal to match exactly. Otherwise, it will look obvious that the ring was resized. 

Usually, you can get up to two sizes when resizing in this manner, although in some instances, you may only be able to get around 1 size up if there is not a lot of available space to add in a piece of metal.

This is usually in cases where there is an intricate design extending for the majority of the ring, or diamonds that go almost all the way around the ring. 

If you do have an ornate design or gemstones going all the way around the ring, you either will not be able to have it resized, or will have to pay a lot of money for the jeweler to recreate the design to match perfectly in the new addition to the ring.  

Ring Resizing Cost

We have already touched on cost briefly. Resizing a ring down will almost always be cheaper than resizing a ring up, due to the added cost of the material.

If you have a simple size change and do not have to worry about matching or recreating a design, the charge will obviously be much less.

Because there are so many factors at play, it is hard to give an average cost. We do recommend that you go to a reputable jeweler so that you do not end up with a damaged or misshapen ring.

While this typically means the resizing will cost more, it is worth it if you are dealing with a priceless ring that you want to wear and keep in the family for generations. 

For a simple resizing down of a ring, you may be able to pay as little as $40 or $50. For resizing up, the cost will be more and will depend on what type of metal is present.

Platinum will cost more, followed by white gold, then yellow gold, then sterling silver. You can expect a higher range of around $100-$300 to resize a ring up. If you have to have something custom-designed, it will likely be more than that. 

We would recommend that you consult with several jewelers in your area and do a price comparison and see what the cost will be.

The cheapest option may be okay, but be sure to check for reviews of the jeweler to make sure you are dealing with someone who knows what they are doing.  

Finally…

While resizing a ring is certainly possible, there are plenty of considerations to keep in mind before deciding to go through with the change.

From the metal type, to how many sizes you need, to the cost, you want to think through everything before making your final decision.

Ultimately, if you need the ring in a different size so that you can wear it and enjoy it, you should absolutely do it so that you can get the enjoyment out of the ring instead of it just sitting in a jewelry box!

When possible, get the right size in the first place, but if that isn’t an option, always know that resizing is the way to go.

Do you have a ring collection that you can’t wear because they are the wrong size? Are you open to having them resized so that you can wear them? Let us know!