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The Elena in Rose Gold

Wedding rings are meant to be worn for the long haul. Like, the rest of your life. But does that mean that they are supposed to be worn all the time, even when you are asleep? Should you shed your wedding jewelry just like you take out your contacts and kick off your shoes? Or are you supposed to honor those wedding vows by leaving rings on around the clock? After all, you do spend a third of your life asleep, and the ring doesn’t really bother you. Rest easy. Here’s the good news about this dilemma: whatever works best for you is almost certainly the right answer. It won’t give you weird blisters to wear your ring overnight nor will it cut off circulation or anything like that. If that’s happening, even if your fingers have swelled a little overnight, you have the wrong ring size and we need to remedy that.

There are indeed some reasons why you might consider removing your rings and putting them in a safe spot before you catch some Zzzs. Just as there are multitudes of people who happily wear their rings to bed their whole lives. Trust us — even men’s wedding bands that are made out of titanium feel like part of the finger after a bit of time. If you are unsure what category you fit into, here are the pros and cons of sleeping with your rings on.

8 Times When You Should Take Off Your Ring

sleeping woman wearing wedding ring

Source: Phatranist Kerddaeng /

First of all, there are definitely times when you should take your rings off. If you are handling something with a high risk of bacteria (whether you are working in a hospital or just chopping raw chicken), you don’t want your rings to carry those germs around. And if you are dealing with heavy machinery from factory floors to exercise equipment, you don’t want to risk the brutal effects of ring avulsion when your ring gets caught on an object and wrenched violently off your finger. You really want to remove every piece of jewelry you wear in those scenarios, anyway. (Or wear a silicone ring!)

What Is Ring Avulsion?

While you are unlikely to dunk basketballs or operate a trash compactor in your sleep, it is possible that your ring might snag in your hair or scratch your face while you slumber. So if you are an especially active sleeper (or have a sharp ring setting that doubles as a self-defense feature), you might put your rings aside for your own safety. Also, remove your rings if your partner, your bed or the jewelry itself starts showing signs of wear and tear. The same goes for relatively delicate gemstone jewelry that you don’t want to accidentally damage while asleep.

Generally, if you have a prominent setting with high, fancy prongs, you’ll want to remove it before you sleep. That’s going to be better for the ring’s health in the long term. You don’t have to take off your engagement ring before sleeping, but if you do, make sure you put it in the same place each night.

rose gold watch and wedding bands

Source: Stenko Vlad /

It’s also possible that if you are slightly allergic to the nickel in a ring or a little lazy about cleaning it, wearing it at night exposes the skin to additional irritation. You also can avoid any sort of buildup of oil or sweat on your ring by choosing not to wear it overnight. However, if you aren’t concerned about any health issues and your ring isn’t bothering you (probably because you shopped our hypoallergenic catalog and you keep it sparkling with our ring care suggestions), then the extra wearing time probably isn’t going to tip the scales one way or the other.

Finally, your finger itself might swell in the night, or be a little puffier than usual when you retire for the evening. Your finger tends to be a bit bigger towards the end of the day, and changing sleep positions can contribute to additional fluctuation. Or if you are the kind of person who puts ticking clocks in the closet and travels with your own high thread count sheets, the distraction of the ring might prevent quality Zzzs. If that’s the case, don’t feel guilty about setting the ring aside for the night. And don’t feel guilty if you usually take it off, but wake up with it on. 

If you do take it off, however, make sure you are putting it somewhere safe. Having a ring dish or something like that on your bedside table is only going to make your life easier. Putting your engagement ring in a safe place (and the same place, consistently) really is the best thing. If you choose to leave your jewelry on during the night, though, you do alleviate the concern of where you put your ring if you’re not great about consistency.

One of the advantages of keeping it on your finger is that you are less likely to lose it, especially if you are spending the night somewhere unusual, like a hotel. Don’t remove your ring because it has a dramatically pointy setting, only to slap your hand down on the diamond while you are fumbling for the snooze button. And if you are losing sleep about losing your engagement ring while you sleep, take comfort in knowing that affordable engagement rings are a click away. You don’t need to go into financial debt or a sleep deficit to secure a quality replacement.

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