There are countless brides out there who think they know exactly what kind of engagement ring they want…. Until they try it on. Just like jeans or dresses, different rings suit different body types – or hand types, to be more specific. Here’s how to find the perfect design for you.
Good news! Dainty, delicate engagement ring designs look absolutely fabulous on small hands. Keep your ring and centre stone in proportion with your petite hand frame and your diamond will look as fantastic as any other. Princess cuts looks especially flattering on small hands in our opinion, as do non-traditional settings like the tension design. And if you do opt for a small stone there’s some even better news; you’ll get your engagement bling for a smaller price tag! And if your budget is flexible, that means you can spend more on a gem that, while small, has much better clarity, cut and colour than a larger stone of the same price. It’s win-win.
In the same way that small rings flatter small hands, large rings flatter large hands. In fact, small engagement ring designs can actually look lost on bigger hand shapes, and can sometimes even look like toy rings! On the other hand (pun intended), you can rock large gemstones and bold, chunky designs with ease. Art Deco engagement rings and large hands are a match made in heaven, and coloured gemstones in weighty sizes look fantastic too. You’ll probably want to consider a thicker band too so the design is in proportion with your fingers. If you can afford a large diamond, then we say go for it. If your hands have a square shape, consider rounded stones to soften the look.
Brides with long fingers have the luxury of being able to make pretty much any engagement ring design work. Big and bold, tiny and delicate, anywhere in between; it all looks gorgeous. However there are some styles that especially flattering. In particular, elongated stone shapes like marquise, pear or oval give your fingers the illusion of even more length. When paired with a thin band, it’s a true dream team. You can also experiment with unique designs such as stacked rings, narrow designs that wind up your ring finger, and so on. Classic round cut diamonds or contemporary princess cuts are always winners here.
The trick to making engagement rings look great on short fingers is balance. You want to choose an oblong stone to give the illusion of length, but in a not too big, not too small size so as not to dwarf your hand. The right size stone will depend on the measurements of your hand and the length of your fingers, but small-medium is usually the best ballpark. Again oval, pear or marquise shapes work quite well for short fingers, as to rectangular shapes like emerald and radiant cuts. It’s best to avoid large, round stones or large stones set horizontally across the band, as this will cut off the lengthy look and make your hands appear wider than they are.
Brides with wide fingers probably won’t find delicate, small engagement rings or narrow, oblong gemstones flattering. Showing lots of skin either side of the main stone will only accentuate things, so instead opt for wide, large stones and pair them with thicker bands to complement your hand shape. Cluster styles or rings with accent stones on the shoulders work well. A round brilliant diamond in a larger size is the optimum choice, but if your budget won’t stretch that far, then consider an emerald or marquise cut set horizontally instead; for inspiration, take a look at the engagement rings of Catherine Zeta Jones and Portia De Rossi.
A small stone on a slightly thicker band can create the illusion of width, if you’re self conscious about your fingers being too slim. If your fingers are slim but short, the aforementioned oblong shapes are ideal for lengthening and enhancing your hand shape. Very large gems might look a like overbearing on slim fingers, but medium sizes can strike the perfect balance. We like the traditional and timeless round diamond solitaire in this situation, but princess cuts, ovals, and even emeralds can look equally great. Again, horizontally set stones can also work well.
There are a few other things to remember here, too. One; if you like a certain engagement ring, and we mean really, really like it, then just go for it! Who cares how it looks on your hand? It’s your dream ring, and that’s all you need. Secondly; don’t forget to take account of your nails, if you keep them cut short or long and pointy, this can change the overall look of your hands and add length to your fingers. And lastly; no matter what you do, make sure you enjoy the experience of finding the engagement ring you’ve always wanted! Congrats!