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Shockingly, 1 in 3 Women Are Wedding Ring Removers

According , one in three married or engaged women in the UK claim to remove their wedding or engagement ring in certain situations; with removal due to ‘fear of damaging employment prospects’ being a top reason.

It appears that the parading of engagement and wedding rings isn’t something that many women around the UK are keen on, our study has revealed that one in three women admit to regularly removing their wedding or engagement ring in certain situations.

Of these, situations in which they felt their ‘employment/ job progression prospects would be compromised’ were revealed to be the most common; whilst wanting to appear ‘single’ was also a motivating factor for many.

The study was conducted by as part of our research into the attitudes of women in the UK towards their wedding or engagement rings as we are always looking at what motivates people when jewellery is concerned. 1,712 women took part, all of whom were aged 18 and over and currently engaged or married.

Those taking part were asked, ‘Do you ever remove your wedding/ engagement ring in certain situations?’ Respondents were asked to exclude situations such as to avoid getting the ring(s) wet, during housework or when the ring(s) were being cleaned from their answers.

I was surprised that just over a third, 35%, of the women taking part said ‘yes’, they did remove their wedding/engagement rings when it wasn’t necessarily normal to do so. When asked to elaborate on what exactly these situations causing ‘ring removal’ were, the following situations were revealed to be the most common:

1)      At work- 35%

2)      When attending job interviews- 29%

3)      When out socialising- 22%

Of those who claimed to remove their wedding or engagement ring at work, just over three fifths, 62%, explained that they did so because they were afraid that the ‘signal of my relationship status would harm my career/ job prospects.’ The same went for those who claimed to do so when attending a job interview, with 71% admitting that they removed their ring as they felt the ‘signal of my relationship status would harm my chances of getting the job in question.’ In addition, the majority, 55%, of those who had removed their ring in these work-related situations claimed that their employer/ interviewer was a woman.

Furthermore, all respondents who admitted to removing their ring through fear of damaging work or employment prospects were asked why they felt this way. Three quarters, 74%, admitted that they feared that wearing an engagement or wedding ring on show would make employers think they ‘may soon leave to have a family’, and so removed their ring to avoid being pigeon-holed in this way, should their employer see this as a negative. A fifth, 19%, removed their ring in order to avoid their age being assumed by employers- which, they felt could lead to ‘limited progression prospects.’

Of all respondents taking part, 81% feared being judged by their employer on their relationship status. 60% also admitted that they felt that women’s career progression was often hindered by their relationship status, should they get married or start a family.

In contrast, of those who claimed to remove their ring when out socialising, the vast majority, 59%, claimed that they did so as they ‘wanted to appear single’ to others. Just 8% claimed that they did so as they feared losing their ring.

Of those who wanted to appear single, 56% explained that they didn’t want members of the opposite sex to ‘treat them differently’ when out, and so removed their ring to avoid this. 11% openly admitted that they did so in order to cheat on their partner.

Of all respondents who claimed to remove their wedding or engagement ring, just 9% claimed that their partner was aware of them doing so.

At Comparejewellery we specialise in helping men and women find the right rings for them at the best possible value, so we’re always interested to find out more about people’s attitudes towards their wedding and engagement rings; and particularly how they feel that others perceive their jewellery. It seems that a fair few women in the UK are ‘ring removers’, but the reasons why were incredibly interesting- with fear about the connotations that the ring holds when it comes to employment prospects being the most common factor in ‘ring removal.’

Even in modern times, many women still firmly believe that they are pigeon-holed by their relationship status- fearing fewer opportunities should they be viewed as likely to swan off to start a family, and so take their ring off to avoid this happening. Whether this be the case or not, it’s clear that these kind of stereotypes are still a problem in the workplace. It’s clear from our results that engagement and wedding rings signify so much more than simply a marriage- they’re a signal of our life plan. Whether or not others take note of the rings, as many women believe, remains to be seen.

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