The Ring of O – History and meaning

Author: Marina
A to Z | Basics

Content/trigger warning: term “slave”

What does the ring of O mean?

The ring of O is a finger ring to which a smaller, movable ring is attached. Its shape is reminiscent of a so-called slave collar, to which a movable ring is attached so that a leash or chain can be attached. Occasionally the corresponding collars, especially those made of metal, are also referred to as the ring of O or O-rings.

Was does the ring of O mean?

The fing of O gained its importance with the film adaptation of the scandalous novel “Story of O” by Pauline Réage from 1975. The submissive protagonist with the name O receives the ring from her master as a symbol of identification: whoever knows the meaning of the ring has the right to dispose of her sexually. For this reason, the ring is still often given today as a special, possessive gift from the dominant to the submissive.

Of course, in reality today this right does not exist. Nevertheless, it serves as a symbol of recognition for BDSM adherents around the world, saying: I know the meaning and history of this piece of jewelry and by wearing it, I commit myself to BDSM.

What to pay attention to

You can buy O-rings in common BDSM shops, offline and online or on Amazon. Since it is usually made of solid steel, it is important to measure the appropriate size.

Much more important, however, is to ask yourself: Do I want to identify myself as a BDSM practitioner in everyday life? Because many people only wear the ring at scene events or regulars’ tables. On the other hand, as in the film, usually only initiated people know its meaning as a confession. In addition, the ring of O-model is finding its way into mainstream fashion and is therefore becoming more and more socially acceptable. For example, as a finger ring with a less massive shape, a bangle or a delicate chain with an O-shaped pendant.

The second question is: Do I even want to display my preferred role? As a rule, wearing it on the right hand is seen as a display of bottom status, while wearing the O ring on the left hand is intended to show that someone is dominant. The latter comes from the idea of not injuring the submissive part with the metal when hitting with the bare hand. However, this only applies to right-handed people who hit with their right hand. If they hit at all. Switchers often wear the ring on a chain around their neck.

Since, as already mentioned, the model has also become a common fashion accessory, it does not always have to be a BDSM symbol. So think twice before dating a person.

Discover more about

Share The Article

You could also be into