Promise Ring vs. Engagement Ring

Promise Ring vs. Engagement Ring-Hanno Stockholm

Rings have forever held a symbolic role in relationships. We have ones denoting every stage of a bond between two people. Engagement rings may be the most popular ones out there. But there are many others that hold a special place for many couples. 

Promise, pre-engagement, and purity bands, to name a few. Promise ones are often confused with betrothal and pre-betrothal ones. The intention behind them may be similar, but they are actually very different. 

It's about where you stand in your relationship when it comes to choosing a piece of jewelery to symbolize it. Let us see what may be meant for you in the promise ring vs. engagement ring debate. 


Engagement ring

Engagement bands have been around since the 15th century. They mark the incoming wedding of a couple when one person proposes to their partner. Traditionally restricted to Christian and European societies, they have long found their way worldwide, albeit with various tweaks. 

They are usually worn by women on the third finger of their left hand post-proposal. This is the same finger where a wedding band is also worn alongside it. In many cultures such as — Norwegian, it is also worn by men.


Promise ring

Contrary to popular belief, promise rings are significantly different from betrothal and even pre-betrothal ones. Latter two denote an impending union — whenever that may be. But a promise band is given with an intention to marry with no set date in mind.

Interestingly enough, they have been around far longer than betrothal bands. There has been documented use of promise bands as early as the second century BC in ancient Rome. The idea behind them is for one partner to demonstrate to their partner that they do intend to marry but not in the near future.

Couples who are young and still pursuing life goals may use this band to show their commitment to their partners. Couples going through a particular journey together, say a long-distance job or study course may also use it. It may be worn on the third finger of either hand.


Promise ring vs. Engagement ring

Promise bands are often confused with betrothal ones. However, they are both quite different. Promise bands don’t mean engagement, neither do they promise one in the near future. They are simply a word of honour to stay committed to one’s partner and a pledge to marry them when the time is right.

If you compare the promise ring vs. engagement ring, both look quite different. Promise bands usually don’t have a gemstone as a centrepiece. This makes them cost less than betrothal bands. You may still give a betrothal ring if you have already given a promise one.

It depends on you. If you are wearing said promise band on the third finger of your left hand, you may shift it to the same finger of your right hand to make room for this new piece of jewelery.


When is it given?

An engagement band is usually given by one person to their partner when proposing marriage to them. The marriage is typically intended to be in the near future or whenever both partners find the time. In many cultures, an event is held where both partners present one another with such bands. 

A promise band is given by one person to their partner as a promise to marry them when the time is right, whenever that may be. It is a way to tell that they are not ready for matrimony as of now but would love to tie the knot with their partner when the time is right. It may be given at any point in your relationship. 



Promise bands differ in looks from engagement ones primarily because they don’t normally have a gemstone. They may be simple, extravagant, dainty, or sturdy — whatever you want them to look like. 

Low profile engagement ring styles may function as both promise and engagement bands, depending on your preferences. Many couples treat a promise band as an engagement one simply because it is budget-friendly and is great to be worn on a day-to-day basis.


Tradition behind it

Promise rings have been around for far longer than standard engagement bands. However, the latter has been more popular. The idea behind both is to demonstrate commitment. The betrothal band saw its origin in the 15th century and is widely used around the world.

The promise band has been around since the second century BC. Even though it served as an engagement band then, its meaning has now greatly evolved. It is not that formal an affair either. 


Finger it is worn on

A promise band is worn on the third finger of either hand. An engagement one is mostly worn on the same finger of the left hand. In case you already have a promise band there, you may shift it to the other hand. Or, more creatively, you may turn it into a pendant.


Promise ring vs. Engagement ring — where to get them?

If you are looking for exquisite promise and engagement rings, Hanno Stockholm AB should be your pick. We have an extraordinary collection of handcrafted, conflict-free jewellery. You may find quality bands from low profile engagement rings antique to ones that relish in the modern design.

You will also find varying designs and stunning quality for every kind of band. We only use top-notch quality of 18k rose gold, traditional yellow gold, silver, and platinum. Our low profile engagement rings yellow gold have especially been popular owing to their ease of use and exquisite quality.


Get your dream ring today

The promise ring vs. engagement ring debate has been around for a while. Both are distinctly different even though they can play the same role as well.  It’s about your desires and expectations regarding the band.

At the end of the day, you should pick a band that you feel is right for your relationship. Our premium collection will help you find just the one you are looking for. Contact us and get the ring of your dreams today.

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