This Is How Engagement Rings Work for Guys

Engagement rings are almost exclusively associated with women and have been for centuries. However, as the world becomes more progressive and equal, some guys might be interested in wearing engagement rings.

Although they’re not highly popular yet, men’s engagement rings exist and can be worn between the proposal and marriage stages of the relationship. They come in different styles, shapes, and sizes, so there’s something for everyone. The woman can buy the engagement ring or vice versa.

Interested in learning more about men’s engagement rings? This article will discuss who should pay for them, why men don’t usually wear them, where they’re typically worn, and other essential facts about men’s engagement rings. 

Who Should Pay for a Man’s Engagement Ring?

The person who should pay for a man’s engagement ring depends on the specific relationship and agreement.

If the man receiving the engagement ring isn’t aware of it, the giver should purchase it to keep it a secret. 

If it’s not a secret, the person who pays for the ring could be anyone, based on your agreement as a couple. In modern times, some couples might buy each other’s wedding and engagement rings. 

Below are some things to consider when deciding as a couple who should pay for the man’s engagement ring:

  • Who makes the most money? Some couples might agree that whoever makes the most money should pay for the engagement ring. Of course, this isn’t always the case, but it can be.
  • Who is initiating the proposal? Generally, the person initiating the proposal (i.e., the person asking, “will you marry me”) is the one who should pay for the man’s engagement ring. Again, this isn’t a hard-and-fast rule.
  • Are you both getting an engagement ring? If it’s a case where both parties are receiving an engagement ring, the agreement might be that each person will buy the ring for the other. Alternatively, the person making the most money might want to purchase both.

In the past, it was expected for the man to buy the woman’s engagement ring, and that was that. Although that tradition is still prominent today, new practices are being introduced (especially now that same-sex marriages are becoming more acceptable and mainstream).

Therefore, the person who buys the man’s engagement ring isn’t automatically expected to be the guy. Anyone can buy it as long as they don’t have an issue with the agreement.

Where Does a Man Wear an Engagement Ring?

A man typically wears an engagement ring on the left ring finger, the same finger a woman wears one on. Wearing engagement and wedding rings on this particular finger is a tradition that goes back many centuries.

It has been believed for many years that the vein in this finger connects to the heart, which is why we continue to wear our rings on the ring finger.

While it’s common for men and women to wear engagement rings on the left ring finger, it’s not a hard-and-fast rule. Many people (men and women) wear their engagement rings on different fingers and even on the right hand.

For example, in Germany, men and women often wear their engagement rings on their left hand before marriage. Once married, they switch the rings to the right hand. 

So, the finger a man decides to place his engagement ring on mainly depends on preference and the specific traditions in his culture.

Essential Facts About Men’s Engagement Rings

Below are some essential and interesting facts to know about men’s engagement rings if you’re a man planning on wearing one or if you’re planning on buying one for your male partner.

They’re Called “Management Rings”

Firstly, men’s engagement rings are known as “management rings.” Of course, you can call them engagement rings if you wish, but it’s good to know the proper term. These rings have been around for many decades.

The earliest attempt to popularize the “management ring” was in the 1920s, when companies created marketing campaigns to promote these diamond rings for men. While the idea didn’t take off back then, it has recently gained traction. One could say those companies were way ahead of their time!

Still, many people have likely never heard the term “management ring” because they haven’t reached the same level of popularity as the standard women’s engagement ring. 

They’ve Only Recently Become More Popular

Men’s engagement rings have only recently become more popular, mainly due to social progression and the rise of same-sex marriages and proposals worldwide.

For example, same-sex marriage only became completely legal in all 50 US states in 2015. Since then, more men within the country have begun wearing engagement rings that have traditionally only been worn by women.

However, it’s not just the legalization of same-sex marriage that has made men’s engagement rings more popular. Also, men in same-sex couples aren’t the only men that have started to wear these rings. 

A general shift to a more open and equal society without gender roles has sparked the popularity of straight men wearing management rings. In some cases, the woman may propose to the man with an engagement ring, which is undoubtedly a modern approach compared to the social norms 15–20 years ago.

As the world progresses and becomes more accepting of things that used to be considered “strange” or “too feminine for a man,” how we wear rings on our fingers also progresses. 

It Signifies Equality in Many Cases

A man wearing an engagement ring signifies equality within the relationship without either person having to say a word. This is especially true if both the man and woman wear an engagement ring (or, in the case of a same sex-couple, both men).

When both people in the relationship wear engagement rings, it shows that they view each other as equals and are committed to each other. Neither person views themselves as “above” the other, and it’s also likely that neither person must conform to traditional gender roles in the relationship/home.

A man wearing an engagement ring also shows he’s happy to break social norms and traditions to show his love and devotion to his partner, which many would see as highly admirable.

Since a man’s engagement ring signifies such an essential part of life, it’s vital to choose a ring that matches his style and one that he will cherish forever.

They Can Be Bought From Jewelers

You can find a man’s engagement ring in particular jewelers, but only some places will have what you’re looking for. Most men’s engagement rings are silver or gold bands (similar to wedding rings), so you could technically purchase a wedding ring but use it as an engagement ring for a man.

Most jewelers will not sell men’s engagement rings with a diamond in the middle (like the style of the typical female engagement ring), so you might need to shop around or have something custom-made if that’s what you’re looking for.

Be prepared for the people working in the jeweler to be a little shocked or confused initially when you mention “management ring” or “men’s engagement ring,” as it’s not a request they get very often.

Many People Aren’t Aware That Management Rings Exist

Despite their rising popularity, especially over the last 5-10 years, management rings aren’t nearly as popular or common as women’s engagement rings. As a result, you shouldn’t expect everyone to know they exist.

Be prepared to explain the situation to anyone who might not know what a management ring is or why you want to wear one/give one to your partner. 

Many Men Aren’t Fans of Wearing Engagement Rings

Even though the world is becoming more progressive each year, a lot of men don’t like the idea of wearing an engagement ring alongside their partner. 

One of the main reasons for this is that plenty of men don’t like the idea of wearing something inherently feminine and delicate, so they’d rather just wear the wedding band when the time comes. 

Unfortunately, this means some people may be against you wearing an engagement ring (if you’re a man) or giving an engagement ring to your male partner. The best thing you can do is ignore the backlash and judgments and do what makes you happy!

It’s also important not to judge men who don’t want to wear engagement rings because everyone has their own preferences and traditions.

Why Don’t Men Usually Wear Engagement Rings?

Men don’t usually wear engagement rings due to tradition. Throughout history, the woman’s engagement ring has been a sign that she is taken and belongs to someone. So, she’s unavailable to anyone other than her fiance.

Of course, this idea is highly old-fashioned, which is why there has been a shift in recent years. Still, most men don’t wear engagement rings because they want to keep up with the tradition, even if they disagree with the original meaning of it (i.e., that a woman is essentially their property).

One of the reasons we like to stick with traditions is that they give us a sense of belonging. So, it’s no wonder many men don’t want to wear engagement rings.

Plus, many men view engagement rings as feminine, so they aren’t interested in wearing them. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that, but there’s also nothing wrong with a man wanting to wear one to showcase his commitment to his partner.

While tradition is one of the main reasons men don’t usually wear engagement rings, there are other reasons. Below are some examples:

  • Embarrassment. People often just want to follow the crowd to avoid sticking out. Doing something out of the ordinary can cause embarrassment, and a man wearing an engagement ring would be considered “different.” With time, more men should be able to confidently wear engagement rings if they wish.
  • Functionality. Let’s face it–rings can sometimes be a nuisance, especially if you need to take them off daily before doing different tasks. If a man constantly has to remove an engagement ring, it might put him off wanting to wear one.

How To Give a Man an Engagement Ring

There are different ways to give a man an engagement ring if you want to buy it for him, and the method you choose depends on your personal preferences and what your partner would like.

Below are some different ways to give a man an engagement ring.

Let Him Choose One

You might not know which style to choose, and engagement rings can be costly. To avoid wasting your money on a ring your partner doesn’t like, it’s a good idea to let him come with you to choose a ring.

Once he chooses the one he likes, you can buy it and give it to him immediately. You could also come back and buy it later when he’s not there and give it to him later.

Another option is to let him choose a few rings that he likes. Then, you can return to the store without him and choose a ring from one of his choices. That way, you know he’ll like the ring, but there will also be an element of surprise because he won’t know which one he’s getting.

Give It To Him As Part of a Proposal 

If you want the entire thing to be a surprise, one of the best things to do is purchase a ring and give it to your male partner as part of a marriage proposal (like a traditional proposal). You can even get on one knee if you wish!

This is an excellent way to give him an engagement ring if you want an element of surprise and tradition.

Give It To Him as a Gift

A marriage proposal isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s OK! If you don’t want to give him a ring through a standard proposal, consider wrapping it and giving it as a present. Consider giving it to him as a gift on a special occasion, such as:

  • Christmas
  • His birthday
  • Valentines Day
  • New Years

You could also give him the engagement ring as a gift on any typical day. 


Although engagement rings are usually associated with women, they have become a more popular choice for men in recent years. Engagement rings for men work in much the same way as they work for women. 

Men’s engagement rings are also known as management rings, and they signify equality and respect within a relationship.

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