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The Skinny On Ring Size

Ring size is based on mathematical measurements, and at David Alan, we custom make our own ring sizers. We can get as precise as 1/16 of a whole size, which is one of the perks of working with a custom fine jeweler.

The good news is that there is no “vanity” sizing when it comes to fine jewelry, unlike clothing.

Ring size is based on mathematical measurements: measuring a ring’s inner diameter in millimeters is the gold standard, although there are some nuances.

Ring sizing can differ from one brand to another, unfortunately. At David Alan, we are fastidious about our tools matching, going so far as to make our own ring sizers. When clients come to our Atelier, we know no matter which tool or which person measures, we get it right. While most brands typically offer whole or half sizes only, at David Alan we can get as precise as 1/16 of a whole size. Consider this just one of the perks of working with a fine jeweler  (or a “fine jewelry craftsman”). 

BUYER BEWARE! On the Internet, there are countless misleading tricks and tips to obtain your ring size. Many of these approaches can be wildly wrong. Here is why: Methods like wrapping paper or string around the base of your finger do not account for the width of your knuckle, the contour of the ring, and the flexibility of the material used to measure (string is not like metal!).


  1. RING GAUGE. When in doubt, use a ring gauge set to obtain your ring size. Here is a reliable and affordable set available on AMAZON. When necessary, we send these directly to clients when they are not able to visit our DA atelier. 
  1. SURPRISE RINGS. If you are purchasing a ring for another person, tracing one of their existing rings and placing it on a printable chart can give you that ring’s size. However, it doesn’t promise an exact fit.  
  1. RIGHTY OR LEFTY? Most people’s dominant hand is typically half size larger than their non-dominant hand. Most people in the US are right-handed. And in the US, we tend to wear engagement rings on the left hand.
  1. HOW WIDE? Keep in mind the width of the ring being purchased, as wider rings fit the finger tighter than thin ones do.
  1. MEN VS. WOMEN. Men and women can use the same sizing chart and tools to measure their fingers. However, men tend to have a different physical size because of their physical being. Also, gents tend to wear wider rings.
  1. WINE, SALT AND HEAT. What do they have in common? They can all alter your finger size! Daily indulgences and body temperature can affect our finger size. In general, heat makes humans swell, and so does salt. Keep this in mind when obtaining finger size.  
  1. LEAVE IT TO US: When in doubt, let David Alan do the work. Our top secret hack? We ask clients to take a picture of a well-fitting ring next to a quarter. Using our advanced design software, we can figure out the exact diameter of their ring and obtain their size.
  1. DON’T GUESS. Not all rings can be sized up or down. This is why it is so important to take precautions and take time to obtain the exact finger size. A few fun facts!
  • Jewelry made of precious metals can be sized. 
  • Alternative metals like tungsten cannot be sized. 
  • An engagement ring can be sized up or down. Sizing down is generally preferable to sizing up. 
  • Different rings styles must be handled differently when sizing. Eternity bands with diamonds or gemstones on the outside are preferable to size up (not down). 
  • Wider rings will fit tighter and therefore might need to be slightly larger to fit properly. 


Why is David Alan’s sizing so different? Not only are we sticklers for obtaining the right finger size, but we also take extra care and caution when sizing a ring. Our master jewelers use a laser welder to make the change in size truly seamless. Soldering, although faster and cheaper, results in a weaker mechanical bond and is not David Alan’s preference. Lasering, the method we use, forms a strong and seamless metallurgical bond that leaves no trace of our precise work. Like all things David Alan, this method takes more time and expertise. Further, we check each diamond and gemstone’s safety as well perform a final polish to be sure no evidence of sizing remains! 


Our expert bench jewelers, overseen by master jeweler David himself, will ensure that your ring is sized perfectly and comes back to you sparkling. Book your 15-minute consultation with David today.