Save That Finger! Help Getting Off A “Stuck Tight” Ring

Maybe some weight was gained or the hot summer heat is making your hands swell…whatever the reason, now your ring is stuck and pulling it off seems impossible. Don’t panic! Take a deep breath and calmly try one of the solutions below.

When nothing helps or pain is felt, don’t hesitate: visit the hospital. The Emergency Room Staff is equipped to handle this very common problem. Not fun, but at least they’ll get the job done.

First, here are a few remedies that might work…

Tips & Tricks For Removal

  • Use glass cleaner (ie. Windex)–spray generously, slide free.
  • Liquid dish detergent–drizzle the liquid over the location, turn the band a few times, smearing gel underneath. Wiggle free.
  • Soapy water–soak in this then try.
  • Ice water or ice pack–chill hand for several minutes (reduces swelling), pull loose.
  • More household lubricant ideas: Mineral/Baby Oil, Vegetable or Olive Oil, WD-40, Peanut Butter (smooth not chunky), Mayonnaise, Vaseline, Skin Lotion, Bubble Bath…glob whatever greasy, oily or slippery thing available around the pinkie, be generous. Twist the band a bit, smearing lubricant underneath. Then twist and pull.
  • String Hack–Here’s a quote from this old bookmark:

It was a hint sent in by someone whose husband was an embalmer, but works on the UN-dead too, as I found out:

  • You thread one end of a string (I used what was available at the shop – embroidery floss, but I wonder if dental tape would work even better) … anyway you thread one under the ring (toward the palm) and wrap the other longer end tight around the finger starting from the ring ending just past the far side of the knuckle.
  • The customer held that taught, while I started to unwrap from the other shorter end. As you unwrap, it slowly slides forward and over the knuckle!
  • I had to use some gentle force, and she said it hurt a bit, but she was thrilled it didn’t have to be cut and took so little time to do. I assume it can be a little risky – it blocks off quite a bit of the blood running to the finger tip for a couple minutes, and I wonder if there’s the possibility of it getting stuck right at the knuckle.

When all else fails, the jewelry store might be equipped to cut the bling. Jewelry pieces are usually repairable, so don’t fret about permanent damage.

Serious Problem

If it’s turning purple or severely swollen due to tightness, keep hand high, digits straight up (at least elbow even with shoulder)–this assists with blood flow and prevents further inflammation. Head directly to the emergency room at the local hospital and have them shear the band. For serious situations, call 911 for assistance and they’ll bring the cutter to you.

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    • Darla

    Use hair conditioner to ease off a too tight ring. Just slop it on generously and slide the ring right off.

    • katlyn

    Usually, any gel can work too. Once, I was trying on my freind’s pinky ring on my ring finger(I got it past the knuckle) and it, of course, got stuck. She told me any gel could work, and she let me use PURREL brand. The rest at our table were so amazed, each girl tried it. 🙂

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