Bracelets, bangles and anklets. All gorgeous pieces of jewellery but each has its own unique style, shape and history. In this article, we are going to talk through the differences as well as our favourites in each collection. Read on to find out the difference between bracelets and bangles and the difference between bracelets and anklets.

The Difference Between Bracelets and Bangles

All bangles are bracelets but not all bracelets are bangles. This is the main definition to think of when comparing the differences. A bangle is a type of bracelet whereas bracelets come in many different shapes and styles, which includes bangles.


The word ‘bracelet’ is derived from the Middle French word ‘bracialle’, which can be loosely translated to ‘armlet'. But bracelets actually have a much longer history than their French word origins. Bracelets have been found in burial sites from ancient Egypt, dating back to 5000bc. Bracelets decorated with scarabs, which were an especially sacred animal, have been found from this time period. Bangles on the other hand came from the South Eastern Asian area and date back to 2600bc. The word ‘Bangle’ can be translated from the Hindi word ‘bangri’, which means ring-shaped armlet. These bangles have been worn since this period and have come to be associated with the Indian subcontinent.


The main difference between the bracelet and bangle is the shape. The word bracelet would cover any circular piece of jewellery that sits on your wrist. A bangle still sits on your wrist but is a firm, solid loop that is usually pushed over the hand onto the wrist. The unyielding shape is the definitive characteristic of the bangle. Bracelets on the other hand can be loose or firm in shape. They can be smooth, have a chain or decorative links. The fastening can be a trigger clasp, watch closure or they could just be a cuff bracelet that you slip onto your wrist. As you can see, the bracelet variety is much larger in styles. However, bangles can be decorated in countless ways so they are very versatile too.

Wearing Bracelets & Bangles

One other traditional difference between bracelets and bangles is in how they are worn. Bracelets are usually considered a stand alone piece. They can be worn on their own to compliment your outfit and can be the main focus of your style. Bangles, however, are usually stacked and paired with other bangles. While this may be the traditional way to wear these jewellery items, we always encourage our customers to find their own style.

The Difference Between Bracelets and Anklets

Bracelets and anklets can be very similar in style but bracelets are generally worn on the wrist, while anklets are worn on the ankle. The anklet actually predates our first bracelets, with some found in the Indian Subcontinent from 8000 BC. While it was a common jewellery item in this period and area, it has not been a staple piece of the west until recent years. Anklets are very on-trend now for the summer.

Size & Wearing Style.

The main difference between a bracelet and an anklet is the size. They can have exactly the same design but anklets are generally much longer than a bracelet. This is simply because most people's ankles are much larger than a wrist so a bigger size is required. Therefore, many people can wear anklets as bracelets if they have an adjusting chain. On the flip side, bracelets can't usually be worn on the ankle unless they happen to be much larger. While we frequently see bracelets being stacked together, especially bangles, anklets still tend to be worn as a single item on just one leg.


Difference Between Bracelets, Bangles and Anklets Horus Eye Bracelet

Our Favourite Bracelets, Bangles and Anklets

Now we know the difference, it's time to go shopping. Here are our favourite bracelets, bangles and anklets in our collection.

Bracelets & Bangles

If you are on the lookout for a bracelet, why not check out our article, our favourite bracelets for women. This has all our favourite bracelet styles currently, including bangles. Some new bracelets that have landed recently include our Gold Lila Horus Eye Bracelet. This is a stunning bracelet that harks back to ancient egypt, the perfect piece for this article since that's where bracelets were first worn. We have also added to our chained bracelets recently and love this Flat Rope Chain Bracelet.

We have a gorgeous array of bangles in our collection. Our most popular bangles are from our Roman Bracelet Bundle which feature roman numerals and cut-out designs. We also have a selection of gem-encrusted, silver and gold bangles if that's more your style.


Check out our full range of anklets here. The majority of our anklets have link chains to provide a flexible and comfortable fit for everyone. The chains come in a variety of styles including, classic link, curb link, rope and snake chains. Almost all our anklets also come in both gold and silver so you always get the right look for yourself. As specialists in personalised jewellery, our custom ICY Initial Anklet, Custom ICY Letter Anklet and Custom Name Anklet, are our favourites to create for our customers. A piece of jewellery that is truly unique to the wearer.

Shop Bracelets and Anklets

We hope you've enjoyed reading about the differences between bangles, bracelets and anklets. If you would like to browse our collection, you can view our bracelets, anklets and personalised jewellery in the shop. Get in touch if you can't find what you are looking for. Or access our help centre for information about ordering, delivery and returns.