How to Put On a Cuff Bracelet

Silver cuff bracelet, view of opening

Small Opening on Cuff Bracelet

In my never-ending quest to educate people on jewelry, I thought I’d try another instructional video. Putting on a cuff bracelet sounds really simple, but it is not an intuitive skill.  There are three reasons I made this video.

First – I very often see people force their cuff bracelets on and off of their wrists, pulling the small open space in back, wider, then pushing it back to a smaller opening once it is on.

Second – I repair a lot of broken cuff bracelets.

Third – I hear the complaint that the cuff bracelet falls off while the wearer is driving.


Why Cuff Bracelets Break

As far as forcing the cuff on and off, many metals can certainly handle this flexing for some time, but like a paper clip, if you pull it back and forth enough times, it will ultimately break. If you want to keep your cuff bracelets for as long as possible, I think it’s worth checking to see if you’re putting it on and taking it off correctly.

If for some reason you can’t watch the video I’ve outlined the steps below.

Putting the Bracelet On – Some Anatomy Required


1. The first thing you’ll want to do is locate your radius and your ulna bone.

Thumb up Exposing Your Radius Bone

Thumb up Exposing Your Radius Bone

2. Point your thumb facing up. This exposes your cuff to the narrowest part of your forearm, or to your radius bone.
3. Place the cuff’s opening about one inch behind your wrist.

Gently Wiggle the Cuff Opening Over the Radius Bone

Gently Wiggle the Cuff Opening Over the Radius Bone

4. You’ll want to rock your wrist back and forth while lightly pushing your bracelet opening down over your radius bone.

Cuff Bracelet Over Radius and Ulna

Cuff Bracelet Over Radius and Ulna

5. As you rock your wrist/forearm back and forth, you’ll feel the tendons move out of the way. Your cuff will work its way lower. Once you work it past your ulna bone, it’s on.

Cuff Bracelet All the Way on

Cuff Bracelet All the Way on

6. Next, you’ll want to rotate your bracelet right, so that it’s lying flat on your wrist.

Push Your Cuff Forward of the Bump on Your Ulna Bone

Push Your Cuff Forward of the Bump on Your Ulna Bone

7. Once I have my cuff bracelet on, I move it forward toward my hand, over the bump of the ulna bone. In this position, it tends to stay put. If your bracelet isn’t at least slightly over your ulna bone’s bump, then it’s liable to slowly work its way off as you move your wrist around, such as when driving.

Taking the Cuff Bracelet Off

  1. First, push the bracelet behind the ulna bone’s bump, so it’s around an inch behind your wrist.
  2. Turn your wrist so that your thumb is up.
  3. Turn the bracelet toward you, moving the opening over your ulna bone. Rock your wrist back and forth. It will work its way over the bone, past the tendons and off your radius bone. Do not pull hard, just gently apply pressure upward, as you work the bracelet off.

How Big Should the Opening of a Cuff Bracelet Be?

The Opening of a Cuff Bracelet

The Opening of a Cuff Bracelet

When you buy a cuff bracelet or unearth one you haven’t been wearing, you’ll want to adjust the opening, so once it’s on, it fits snuggly. That takes a bit more doing, but ideally, it needs wiggling to get on and off, but does not need to be pulled open, to do so. In my case, the opening width of this cuff, looks as if I’d be trapped in it, unless I made the opening larger. Happily, I do not have to open it wider when using my method to remove this cuff.

If you follow these steps, your cuff bracelets will last a long time and will be less likely to fall off when you’re driving!

Your Personal Jeweler,”

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About Calla Gold

Calla Gold is a Personal Jeweler and Author who takes pride in working with clients one-on-one to integrate their personal sense of style and taste into custom designed jewelry and repaired jewelry pieces.   Unlike typical Santa Barbara jewelry businesses, Calla Gold has no brick-and-mortar location. Calla Gold comes to you, bringing you the jewelry collection you want to see and collaborating with you to create unique custom jewelry. Calla also works with at-a-distance clients.

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