If you are attuning to a magical ring the DMG magic item categories states:

Magic rings offer an amazing array of powers to those lucky enough to find them. Unless a ring’s description says otherwise, a ring must be worn on a finger, or a similar digit, for the ring’s magic to function.

(emphasis mine)

However, the DMG section Wearing and Wielding Items states

Using a magic item’s properties might mean wearing or wielding it. A magic item meant to be worn must be donned in the intended fashion: boots go on the feet, gloves on the hands, hats, and helmets on the head, and rings on the finger. Magic armor must be donned, a shield strapped to the arm, a cloak fastened about the shoulders. A weapon must be held in hand.

(emphasis mine)

This appears to contradict the previous ruling, so what would qualify as a "finger or a similar digit"?
Further on, it states

In most cases, a magic item that’s meant to be worn can fit a creature regardless of size or build. Many magic garments are made to be easily adjustable, or they magically adjust themselves to the wearer.

That leads to the question, could a toe ring work? We then move toward gifted male* adventurers, pierced horn / tusk / frill / nose / ear, etc

Related question

*male is assuming anyone with traditionally male genitalia

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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm giving an upvote here for the effort that went in to researching the question and for providing some good, relevant quotes in the question body. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 10, 2021 at 14:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thank you, nice edit to the title. DV removed. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 10, 2021 at 14:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ The party was interrogating you? If that PvP is party of the table dynamic, you may want to provide that info for future questions. I think a lot of us assume that the party works together. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Mar 10, 2021 at 16:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ Does my answer solve your problem well enough for a green check? \$\endgroup\$ Mar 15, 2021 at 19:13

4 Answers 4


The DM decides what is an appropriate digit for a ring.

You've quoted all the relevant rules; the PHB rule seems to have a broader scope than the DMG rule. There is really no other answer or way to approach this than "ask your DM".

In my games, this sort of thing isn't really something we are going to worry about. I'd probably say, "just wear your ring, I don't really care about the details", and leave it at that. I usually don't worry about the details of wearing magic items until one of my players tries to do something a bit more silly, like wear two helmets.

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    \$\begingroup\$ the reason this is relevant is the attempt to avoid a ring of mind shielding being removed from my person or preferably not found, in the first place. should that be a separate question \$\endgroup\$
    – EMTGO
    Mar 10, 2021 at 14:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Aydens Asking for the specific case in the first place would have been the better course of action, and yes, you are corret, it is a separate question. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 10, 2021 at 14:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Aydens Maybe. Generally it's best to ask a question about the problem youre having rather than the solution your considering. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 10, 2021 at 14:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ It is a minor nitpick, and I've already upvoted anyway, but I think this answer might be stronger by directly referencing the links you already included as comments to the original question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Novak
    Mar 10, 2021 at 17:50
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    \$\begingroup\$ "until one of my players tries to do something a bit more silly, like wear eleven rings" \$\endgroup\$
    – BlueMoon93
    Mar 11, 2021 at 13:44

In the first quote "or a similar digit" is likely there to account for creatures which do not have hand/fingers to provide an option for still wearing a ring as in this answer. While it is unlikely the text as written originally intended a humanoid wearer to be wearing rings in other places (and the later quote backs this up), 5e has gotten rid of the "item slots" concept from earlier editions so there is no longer a hard restriction on how items must be worn to balance the item mechanics. Since it is no longer a mechanics question, most tables likely leave it up to your GM to decide. For me, it doesn't break the game from a mechanical or logical perspective, so I'd probably allow it at my table even though I don't think that is what was intended by the original authors.


Given that the Forgoten realms books are a narrative representation of DnD setting, I will reference them. Drizzt do'urden uses speed bracers for his ankles and they still work in a similar faishon (accelerating the limb they are attached to).

In that sense, the DM should consider how to apply the ring efects to the foot instead of the hand.


I think you already quoted the necessary rule from the DMG:

A magic item meant to be worn must be donned in the intended fashion

However the item was intended to be worn by it's creator, that is how it must be worn. If a ring was intended to be worn on a finger, it must be worn there to benefit from it's magical effects.


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