Women’s jewellery is a fascinating subject. Typically, it’s classified according to the part of the body on which it is worn. If we think about jewellery on the arm, the terms bracelets and bangles come to mind – but what’s the difference between the two?

The Main Difference Between Bangles and Bracelets

Both bracelets and bangles are fashion accessories used to decorate the wrist. Like other items of jewellery, they are ornamental. However, the terms are not one and the same thing, but rather entirely different items.

The Bangle

Bangles originate as Asian ornaments, worn by Asian women. Bangles are widely worn in countries such as Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, India and Pakistan. In these countries, bangles are worn on a woman’s wrist. If we look at the history of bangles, we know that they were also used in ancient times. They used to be made of materials such as seashells, stones, gold and woods. Today, there shape and design has certainly changed, and you can even find bangles made of glass. However, silver and gold bangles are also available at various online jewellers.

Other common features of today’s bangles are diamonds and pearls, which often make up part of bridal jewellery. Red bangles tend to be the most popular amongst some cultures. 
Bangles are typically available in two kinds: flexible bangles and rigid bangles. Many women choose to wear bangles in sets of four or eight. Bangles are usually closed with a hook or are a full circle that slips over the wearer’s hand.


The Bracelet

A bracelet is either a loop or a combination of interlaced or attached loop of material like a strap or chain. Bracelets are more flexible than bangles, and are most commonly made of metal, gold, silver or even plastic. Stylish silver bracelets for women may also be embellished with crystals and stones and are usually equipped with a clasp to secure the bracelet around the wrist.

Bracelets date all the way back to 5,000BC to Ancient Greece. During those times, the Scarab Bracelet was believed to symbolise rebirth and regeneration. Today, there are many different kinds of bracelets available. Some common bracelets include:


  • Sports bracelets
  • Bead bracelets
  • Slap bracelets
  • Health bracelets
  • Ankle bracelets
  • Charm bracelets


The Main Differences Between Bangles and Bracelets

There are so many different kinds of jewellery on the market that it can be difficult to distinguish between them, such is the case with bracelets and bangles. Here are the key differences:

  • Bracelets can be traced back to Egyptian times and tend to be more popular in western cultures. Bangles, though, can be traced back to Asia and are still an important part of Asian culture.
  • A bangle is a non-flexible, rigid piece of jewellery whereas a bracelet tends to be malleable.
  • Bracelets are made with clasps so you can fasten them around your wrist. A bangle doesn’t have a clasp and is slipped over the hand and onto the wrist.
  • Bangles are typically round but today they do come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Bracelets don’t really have a shape as they are a strip or chain of material that you fasten around your wrist.


This article is published in a collaboration with Mediabuzzer