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Signet rings are officially back on the agenda thanks to One Day's Dexter Mayhew

The Netflix heartthrob has got us in pursuit of a chic signet ring...

Assortment of signet rings
Orin Carlin
Content Writer
Updated: March 18, 2024
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Forget Connell's chain, we're all about Dexter's signet.  

Netflix tearjerker One Day, adapted for screen from David Nicholls' best-selling novel, has everyone hooked right now – and for fashion fans, the inescapable draw lies in one key accessory moment. 

Cast your mind back to the sweeping obsession with Normal People and softly spoken Connell's silver chain. 

Still image from One Day featuring the character Dexter Mayhew smiling and showing off a silver pinky ring © Teddy Cavendish / Netflix
One accessory in particular has stolen the limelight: Dexter's silver pinky signet ring

Mass thirst for a leading man and his jewellery choices is back with a bang, and this time, it's arrogant heartthrob Dexter Mayhew's (played by Leo Woodall) silver pinky signet ring that has stolen the spotlight. 

The heartbreaking show, which follows the lives of will-they-won't-they couple Dexter and Emma, has won over audiences, but here at Hello! Fashion we're head over heels for Dex's silver status symbol above all else.

What is the history of the signet ring?

According to The History Press, the 'signet ring' was used as long ago as 3500 BC. Records show the people of Mesopotamia used limestone carved cylindrical seals as marks of authenticity. "By the time of the ancient Egyptians the seal had become attached to a ring and Pharaohs and other important people of the day would wear them to show their position," the publisher writes. 

Fast forward to medieval Europe and signet rings were usually emblazoned with a family crest and they would be used to stamp, or sign an official document. The metal shapes would leave a permanent mark in any soft wax and sometimes on clay stamps. "Some of the most important documents in history have been stamped with a signet ring. In its day the stamp of a ring was seen as more authentic than a signature." Steeped in history the signet ring has become a staple in our jewellery boxes to this day. 

MORE: 7 stylish chunky rings to boost your jewellery game

READ: The 10 best pieces of chunky jewellery to add to cart right now

How we chose:

  • Style: Naturally, style is imperative. When combing through the internet's top fashion sites for the best signet rings, we made sure that each of our picks felt elegant and seasonless for maximum wearability.
  • Price: Whether you're planning on splashing out or bagging a bargain, we've got a signet in your price range. We've selected this season's best, ranging from affordable-luxe brands to high-end jewellery labels if you're looking to invest. 

Hello! Fashion shares the best signet rings to shop now: 

  • Best Signet Rings

    Monica Vinader dark gold signet ring

    Guiding Star Signet Ring

    Monica Vinader

    Crafted from...

    18ct Gold Vermeil on Sterling Silver. 

    If you're on the hunt for something elegant, this piece by Monica Vinader lends itself to a calculated stacking moment - it would look great styled alongside slim bands. The celestial motif feels chic and timeless and I love the warmth of the satin-finish gold vermeil.

  • Silver heart signet ring

    Engraveable Heart Signet Ring

    Crafted from...

    Rhodium-plated Sterling Silver.

    Steeped in soft romance, this heart-shaped silver signet by royal-approved jewellery label Missoma is super sweet and would look great on your pinky à la Dex Mayhew. The design features minimalist line etchings either side of the heart focal point, and it can even be engraved to turn it into the ideal bespoke gift. 

  • Liberty gemstone encrusted signet ring

    9ct Gold Equinox Morganite Signet Ring

    Crafted from...

    9ct gold, lab-grown pink morganite stones and lab-grown diamond accents.

    Epitomising the notion of a contemporary classic, this signet by Liberty London would make for a gorgeous modern heirloom. Encrusted with soft pink lab-grown morganite stones and sprinkled with flecks of diamond, it feels precious and utterly pretty. 

  • Silver circular signet ring

    Engravable Signet Ring

    Crafted from...

    Sterling silver. 

    Affordable-luxe jewellery label Pandora has delivered a simple, elegant silhouette with this sterling silver signet. Subtle and delicate, it can be worn alongside other minimalist cool-toned rings, or alone to allow a personal engraving to take precedence. 

  • Brassy gold signet ring with green stone

    Ring Classic Green-Gold

    Crafted from...

    925 Sterling silver with yellow-gold plating and an imitation malachite.

    Deep emerald and brassy gold is one of the most beautiful colour combinations out there, and this unisex signet by jewellery stalwart Thomas Sabo is a case in point. The yellow-gold finish is pretty and warming against the skin, and each piece is completely unique, owing to the individual cut of each piece of imitation malachite. 

  • Alex Monroe gold heart signet ring

    Gold-Plated Victoriana Heart Signet Ring

    Alex Monroe

    Crafted from...

    Sterling Silver with 22ct Gold Plate. 

    Featuring a heart-shaped silhouette with a delicate motif of a swallow delivering a letter, Alex Monroe's Victoriana signet ring evokes an endearing narrative. I love the botanical texture running all the way round the band and think it would make for a fitting investment piece. 

  • Gold and silver signet ring

    Jean Gold Signet Ring in Spinel Blue

    Crafted from...

    18ct Yellow Gold Plated Recycled 925 Sterling Silver.

    I am a sucker for Art Deco style in all areas, not just jewellery, and this two-tone signet by V by Laura Vann is the pinnacle of 1920s-inspired elegance. I love the clarity of the emerald cut spinel blue gemstone, and the unique mixed metals look. 

  • Astrid and Miyu gold thin signet ring

    Signet Ring in Solid Gold

    Crafted from...

     14k solid gold. 

    Astrid & Miyu's Signet Ring feels categorically classic and enduring. Slim, unfussy and infused with a really pretty shine, the piece would work beautifully in a stack or alongside a delicate chain bracelet.  

  • Pave-stud cocktail ring

    Sabbia Ring

    Crafted from...

    18k Black Rhodium-Plated Rose Gold with 86 Brown Diamonds, 46 White Diamonds and 40 Black Diamonds.

    Milanese jewellery label Pomellato technically describes this piece as a "cocktail" design, but it deserves a special mention because the flat face gives it a definite signet-esque feel. Given how the jewellery classic has evolved and been reworked for modern audiences, this pavé-encrusted design fits the bill if you're going for unadulterated opulence. 

  • Square silver signet ring

    Square Signet Ring

    Crafted from...

    Sterling silver. 

    With a distinctly classic air, this square-shaped signet by heritage jewellery brand Tiffany & Co. feels androgynous and refined. The sleek flat top can be engraved for a personal imprint, a modern heirloom to be cherished for generations to come.

  • Seb Brown gemstone encrusted signet ring

    9ct Gold Neapolitan Orange Multi-Stone Signet Ring

    Seb Brown

    Crafted from...

    9ct Gold, Yellow Sapphire, Citrine, Ruby, Pink Tourmaline and Pink Sapphire. 

    Handmade in Melbourne, this piece by Seb Brown feels vibrant and contemporary, allowing coloured gemstones to take centre stage. I love the difference in sizing and cut between each stone for an added sense of individuality. 

  • Carrie Elizabeth gold celestial signet ring

    Diamond Star Set Signet Ring

    Crafted from...

    14k Gold Vermeil and diamonds. 

    For cosmic lovers, this star-engraved signet by Carrie Elizabeth will go down a treat. The size of the face feels large enough that it won't go unnoticed, without ever verging into obnoxious territory. And the glinting diamond accents add a beautiful, luxe power. 

  • Alighieri silver molten signet ring

    The Lost Dreamer Ring

    Crafted from...

    Sterling Silver. 

    I am completely obsessed with Alighieri and the age-old narratives that serve as Rosh Mahtani's inspiration. Handcrafted in Hatton Garden, each Lost Dreamer ring is totally unique, infused with an abstract, molten-effect design.

Why you should trust me:

Orin Carlin is Hello! Fashion’s SEO Content Writer. Promising to leave no stone unturned in the name of fashion and beauty journalism, she is the proud creator of our ‘Try The Trend’ series. With a particular interest in formula innovation, microtrends, royal and bridal beauty, perfume, rituals, treatments, fashion history and vintage icons, she can either be found interviewing major industry names (previous subjects include Georgia May JaggerMary Greenwell and Sam McKnight) or scouring the internet for must-have pieces. It's not just a job; it's a personal quest to unearth noteworthy pieces that resonate with style and beauty enthusiasts.

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