I Tried It: The Oura Ring Generation 3


Whether you’ve seen the shiny ring in an Instagram ad or an episode of And Just Like That…, there’s something intriguing about it. I was at an event in Manhattan when I first spotted someone wearing the tech bling. I initially thought it was a normal piece of jewelry, but then the wearer began telling me that her ring—the Oura—is really good at knowing when she’s had too much to drink or when she’s about to get her period. I asked as many questions as I could without being too intrusive, and then I walked home to do some googling.

Though the Oura Ring was invented back in 2013, it’s picked up momentum in recent years from being selected as one of Time’s Best Inventions of 2020 to being sported by the likes of various royalty, movie stars, and CEOs. As someone who picks and chooses the trends to join in on, I couldn’t help but become fascinated by this ring. I had to try it for myself. Plus, because I wanted to get some comparison on the usefulness and accuracy of the Oura Ring, I got one for my partner too.

Ordering and delivery

When you’re ready to get started with the Oura Ring, the first step is ordering a free sizing kit from the company. In a week or so, you receive a selection of rings in an array of sizes that you can wear around the house for a day to ensure the best fit. Anticipation builds with the multi-part ordering process! It’s also worth noting that it takes about two weeks for the software to calculate the baseline of your health data and make accurate estimates, so know going into this journey that nothing is instant.


The Oura Ring starts at $299, and that isn’t cheap, but the ring is about on par with other wearables like a nice fitness tracker or an Apple Watch. There’s also a choice of finish: Silver, black, stealth (matte black), and gold—the latter two cost $100 more than the latter. Those who preorder, or are new users of the ring, get a six-month free membership, but otherwise memberships are around $5.99 per month.

When getting into the specs of a tech device, things can read like a manual. The Oura is regularly getting new updates with added features. In a brief overview, the four-gram ring packs a suite of sensors into less than one centimeter of space, including those that track temperature every minute, daytime heart rate, workout heart rate, and all with a long-lasting battery life of up to seven days.

Some of the latest updates have included improved temperature sensing, so you can look out for signs that indicate you might be getting sick—sometimes even before you notice symptoms. Plus, the ring also boats a period prediction feature that accurately forecasts your next period 30 days in advance and alerts you six days before it starts, so you’re always prepared.

Coming soon, users can also expect improved sleep staging and blood oxygen (SpO2) sensing, which gives you a more accurate read on the quality of your sleep.


I was most excited to have the Oura Ring to track (and better understand) my sleep. Equipped with my gold ring and my partner with his silver ring, we both found them to be quite flashy, comfortable, and sized as expected. Once charged and synced with our phones, they were ready to go.

Although I’ve worn an Apple Watch and Garmin smartwatch in the past and present, I’ve never wanted to wear them to bed—both from a charging and comfort perspective. That was a great thing about the Oura, it doesn’t feel cumbersome to wear all the time. It’s also nice to not have it pinging or buzzing at you throughout the day. The ring notifies my phone once or twice a day: The first being if I haven’t moved in a while, and the second when it’s two hours before my suggested bedtime, and I should start to wind down for the day.

There was a bit of a gamification element to the ring—each morning I woke up hoping I had a better score. I also found it a bit disheartening that nearly every night I could not get to bed during my suggested ideal bedtime, which negatively affected my score. There’s something to the ring in wanting to up your scores (and feel better), but also knowing that one’s health and wellness is not always in our own control. It was fascinating to see when I was waking up in the night and when I was typically getting the most REM sleep. Some of these patterns help me form better habits, like getting that extra hour of sleep and taking proper rests days or naps to feel better.

Comparing notes with a partner was interesting, too, because often we would wake up at the same time at night, but it wasn’t always accurately reflected in our own sleep data. Same with movement and fitness—the ring doesn’t always understanding what you are doing and crosses wires with the memory of an activity and your location setting. For example, I once went to an event at a hill I regularly ski at, and the ring assumed I was downhill skiing versus the standing around that I was actually doing.

I appreciate the research and advancements Oura is doing by investing in illness detection and women’s health, but I don’t know if wearing the ring has improved how I feel or function day to day. I’ll likely spend more time understanding how the ring and its tracking of my movements coincide, but when it’s time to pay for a membership, I don’t know if I’ll make the commitment.

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