Do I Have to Wear an Engagement Ring and Wedding Band?

How much bling is too much bling?

Updated 08/17/19

Amy and Stuart Photography

The easiest way to tell if someone is married? Take a look at the ring finger on their left hand, of course! That iconic two-ring stack makes it abundantly clear when a woman is committed. But do you have to wear an engagement ring and a wedding band in order to be married? We asked our experts whether wearing both rings together is an absolute must.

The thing that really makes you married is your signature on a marriage license. So whether you’re all about the bling or really aren’t the ring type, what you wear on your left hand has nothing to do with your marital status. The great news is, there are more options for accessorizing your ring finger than ever before, so find a solution that feels right to you! Here are some of our favorite options.

An engagement ring and wedding band.

Naturally, this timeless pairing will never go out of style. No matter the stones, metal, or design you choose, this option is an absolute classic.

A single ring.

Whether you have small fingers, don’t like the look of multiple bands, or would rather spend the money on your honeymoon than extra jewelry, a single ring can definitely serve as both engagement ring and wedding band. It could be a classic solitaire, an infinity band covered in your favorite stones, or a simple all-metal band.

A ring stack.

Why limit yourself to two rings when you could have three, or four, or five? Get creative with different styles, metals, and stones. Find designs that nest neatly, or let those more unique bands stand out.

A non-traditional ring.

Do you work with your hands a lot or lead an incredibly active lifestyle? Your wedding band doesn’t have to be metal! Look at affordable silicone options, which are sturdy and stylish (hello, fun colors!) but can be easily removed and sport an out-of-the-way low profile.

Other symbols.

Not the ring type? You and your partner can still exchange other symbols of your marriage, whether it’s a necklace, earrings, or even matching tattoos—on your ring fingers or otherwise.

No ring.

A wedding band does not a married woman (or man) make! If you’d rather not have to buy something to wear just so other people can “see” that you’re married, don’t sweat it! You both know that you’re married, and you don’t need a symbol to make it official.

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