The Meaning of a Ring on the Index Finger

Updated March 23, 2017

A finger ring can say a lot about a person, but where that person places the ring may also make a statement about them. Each finger on the human hand has a different character, offering a subtle shading to the rings used to adorn it. For example, some say that rings worn on the index finger often suggest power and authority.


According to Wellstone Jewelry, a broker of rings, a ring on the index finger tend to emphasise personal attributes such as leadership, executive ability, ambition, and self-confidence. The company suggests that such wearers often energetically pursue financial gain.

Expert Insight

The fashion and style website Mayvelous suggests that the index finger connotes authority, noting that it can be used to indicate disapproval with a wag, to indicate direction of commands by pointing, and to emphasise a point. Given the index finger's connection to leadership and ambition, Mayvelous suggests that these characteristics may be present in a person who chooses to adorn that finger with jewellery.


Rings placed on the index finger can have many possible functions. They can be adornment, to signify an affiliation with a particular organisation or group, or to suggest wealth or class.


Placing a ring on a certain finger, be it the index finger or otherwise, seldom offers a direct message or code. Although wearing a certain type of ring on the index finger may hold a surreptitious message in certain cultures or societies, in the United States, there is no overt significance attached to it. Rather, the ring's placement may offer a more subtle clue to the wearer's character.


The meaning of a ring on an index finger is not hard and fast, but is rather culturally specific: what it may mean in one place to one people may not hold true for everyone. Consideration should also be given to what type of ring is placed on the index finger. For example, some married couple, while separated or going through a divorce, will not take off their wedding ring, but will move it to another finger.

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About the Author

Michael Wolfe has been writing and editing since 2005, with a background including both business and creative writing. He has worked as a reporter for a community newspaper in New York City and a federal policy newsletter in Washington, D.C. Wolfe holds a B.A. in art history and is a resident of Brooklyn, N.Y.