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What’s the Difference Between an Engagement Ring and a Wedding Ring?

Navigating the world of wedding rings requires learning a new language. What’s a princess cut? Why would I want a halo setting over a solitaire? And how on earth are you supposed to understand karats and carats?!


 But by far, the most confusing aspect comes down to one small distinction: what’s the difference between an engagement ring and a wedding ring?

What’s An Engagement Ring?

Woman's left hand wearing The Enchanted on ring finger

You’ve found the love of your life, and you’re ready for the ultimate commitment. Before you propose, you’re going to need a ring - the engagement ring. This ring is the big kahuna, the gemstone-studded work of Instagram-worthy art that she shows all her friends, her mother, her cousins, that guy on the bus, everyone at the grocery store, and basically any human on earth who will look. This ring is traditionally a surprise, picked out by the one proposing and hidden until the time is right.

What’s a Wedding Ring?

Woman's left hand wearing The Eternity on ring finger

Traditionally, the wedding ring is a simple band that is coordinated with the engagement ring, with little or no stones. The woman’s wedding ring and the men’s wedding band will typically match, with slight differences to make one feminine and one masculine. Given at the wedding during the part of the ceremony when you exchange rings, wedding rings are often picked out by a couple together.

How to Use Them Together

Woman holding coffee wearing The Bliss set on left ring finger

Engagement rings and wedding rings are essentially separate pieces that eventually go together after the wedding. The wedding ring is usually put on under the engagement ring in order to be closer to the heart, and it’s entirely up to the bride whether she wears both rings together or just the band in everyday life.


If you’re looking for examples of engagement ring and wedding ring sets, Modern Gents has a beautiful collection here. We also offer his and hers sets here.

Hopefully you’re feeling more confident knowing at least one of the intricacies of the wedding world. If you need help finding the right band, we have dozens of articles highlighting the advantages of certain materials including titanium, silicone, and wood. We also offer guides to two of our wedding ring sets: Silver, and Rose Gold