It is intended that wearing a purity ring is accompanied by a religious vow to practice celibacy until marriage. The ring is usually worn on the left ring finger with the implication that the wearer will remain abstinent until it is replaced with a wedding ring. Although the ring is worn on the hand, where others can see, its main purpose is to serve as a constant reminder to the wearer of their commitment between themselves and God to remain pure until marriage. There is no particular style for purity rings; however, many worn by Christians have a cross in their design in reference to Jesus Christ. Some rings contain a diamond chip or other gemstone and/or "True Love Waits", "One Life, One Love", or another similar saying embossed somewhere on the ring.
Critics of purity rings argue that virginity pledges are an unrealistic approach to curbing teenage sexuality. A recent review of a number of independent American studies concluded that abstinence programs "show little evidence of sustained impact on attitudes and intentions", and furthermore "show some negative impacts on youth's willingness to use contraception, including condoms, to prevent negative sexual health outcomes related to sexual intercourse".
Miss Manners's opinion is that "polite society does not recognize such a thing as a chastity ring. It is so polite that it presumes that a lady is chaste unless publicly proven otherwise.