The engagement ring. She's pointed to it a million times. The squareish-cut diamond, with a bunch of diamonds around it (ok, so you weren't listening that well, but you could pick it out of a magazine if your life depended on it). The symbol of your love is just one bank account clearing transaction away - when you realize... you don't know the ring size.

The ring size is the bane of your existence. It's the last thing you want to think about when you're popping the big question, but it's the first thing that can ruin your magical moment. Finding a ring size isn't like finding your best man's shirt size for your groomsmen gifts. Ring sizes don't come up in everyday conversation.

If you'd rather pass on the "let's go ring shopping together" experience, take our advice on ring sizing reconnaissance.

Ring Size: 101 - Size Does Matter

Jewelers don't make this easy. Ring sizes in the United State and Canada are on their own system with quarter and half sizes. What makes it more confusing is that fingers can swell up to a full ring size throughout the day from eating or exercising. When it comes to measuring a ring, anything more specific than a half size is irrelevant.

Finding the Ring Size:

There are five ways to find your gal's ring size without her knowing (but only three will work):

5. Use a Printable Ring Size Chart

This printable ring size chart from Blue Nile is a great piece of marketing, but it's not a tool of the trade. The paper sizer is suspect because... um, IT'S PAPER. Paper is flexible. It moves and takes the shape of your finger. You'll get inaccurate results when you compare it to a medal ring.

4. Tie a String Around Her Finger

A string takes less work (no cutting out paper sizers) but still just as shoddy. The string is more likely to give a tight measurement than a loose one.

3. Steal One of Her Rings

Your mission, should you decide to accept it... Snoop through her jewelry box. Swipe a "ring finger" ring. Slide it in your pocket and dash to the jewelry store. If you or any team member be caught or killed, GroomStand will disavow any knowledge of your actions. Good luck. This message will not self-destruct in five seconds (so don't let her find out).

2. Use Your Own Finger

If you can't make it out the door with her ring, place it on your own finger. It's likely that your hands are wider than hers - take note by marking the spot the ring rests (just so you don't confuse yourself, mark your finger on both sides of the ring).

1. Use Soap

This method sounds asinine, but we're not the only ones recommending this stunt. Smash one of her rings into a bar of soap. The circle impression should be an accurate mold of her ring to take to the jeweler.

Ring Shopping - Before You Buy

Understand the return policy. Always make sure you can get a full refund, or at the very least trade the ring back for store credit. If the future fiancé needs an alteration, find out if those services are included with the purchase.

Have fun with the surprise. Remember this is a story you'll have to share about a million times over the next year.