Oura Ring Review - Can it help my work-life balance?

Honest Oura Ring Review (Gen 3) – Can It Track Work-Life Balance?

There’s a tiny smart wearable that can track your health in detail, giving us insight into our body.

In this article, we’re diving headfirst into the world of the much-talked-about Oura Ring.

Can it give us the needed insights to create a more balanced life?

With the hustle and bustle of modern life, finding that delicate work-life balance can feel like an elusive goal. What can this ring do against that?

Let’s find out…


…In this honest review, we’ll be examining whether the Oura Ring Gen 3 lives up to its promises of giving us insights that improve our well-being. From sleep tracking to stress management, we’re looking at all the main functions and features that might just revolutionize the way you are looking at your body.

No fluff or shallow internet summaries. I’ve worn the ring since spring 2023 and will share real learnings and experiences.



Oura Ring Generation 3


What is Oura ring?


What does Oura ring track?


Oura Ring Generation 3 Review


Design and Fit of the Oura Ring Generation 3


Oura Ring Pricing


Oura Ring Unboxing and First Impression


Battery Life of the Oura Ring Generation 3


Oura App


Subscription with Oura Ring Generation 3


My Thoughts on the Oura Ring and its Ability to Track Stress and Work-Life Balance


How these health data points helped me to reflect on my work-life balance


Oura Ring 3 Review Conclusion: Should you buy an Oura Ring?

Oura Ring Generation 3

Design options:

  • Heritage (original design, with a plateau top)
  • Horizon (fully round)

Weight: 4-6g, depending on ring size (is lighter than a comparable design in solid metal)

Battery life: 3 – 7 days


  • Detailed tracking
  • Sleep tracking
  • comprehensive visualization of data
  • waterproof
  • comfortable to wear day and night
  • multiple design options, in different colors
  • Well-documented and detailed info and insights on the home page
  • free sizing kit
  • looks at the balance between activity and rest


  • Not comfortable to wear when carrying heavy items (e.g. work in the garden, weight lifting)
  • Need for a monthly subscription (for full data insights in the Oura app)

What is Oura ring?

The Oura ring is this super cool smart wearable that’s all about helping you understand your health and well-being better, disguised in a simple finger ring.

Picture this: it’s a tiny, stylish ring packed with high-tech sensors that keep track of your sleep patterns, activity levels, heart rate variability, body temperature, and more!

It’s like having your own personal health detective, gathering all this data to give you some serious insights.

And the best part?

You don’t need to be a tech geek to make sense of it all:

The Oura Ring’s app makes it a breeze to see how you’re doing and what areas might need a little boost.

So, whether you’re an athlete looking to crush your goals or just someone who wants to find that perfect work-life balance, the Oura Ring is here to help you live your best, healthiest life!

Oura ring should you buy it?

What does Oura ring track?

Oura ring measures the following data points:


With those data points, Oura gives you insight into:

How does Oura Ring measure these data points?

Tracking works over the sensors on the inside of the ring.


  • Red and green LEDs will measure your blood oxygen levels (sensors measure how much light is reflected or absorbed); there are 3 sensor bumps with LEDs
  • Infrared sensors will measure heart rate and breathing. Temperature sensors measure skin temperature
  • A 3D accelerometer tracks movement
  • And a final sensor will notice if your ring is seated properly (if not, the measured data will be adjusted or not tracked)
Oura ring sensor bumps

How Your Oura Ring Can Help You Create a Healthy Lifestyle by Measuring and Tracking

Do you know what’s becoming super crucial in today’s crazy fast-paced world?

Work-life balance!

When we manage to find that sweet spot between work and personal life, we unlock a whole new level of happiness and well-being: We recharge our batteries, reduce stress, and are better at handling challenges effectively.

Oura ring takes care of measuring a balance. In my opinion, it can add a lot to adding healthy habits to your life (and keep them!). It translates the hints and clues that your body sends out constantly, and it can help you see trends and irregularities long before you would realize the effect yourself consciously.


But of course, it’s not done by wearing the ring. You truly need to closely look at your scores and make healthy decisions every day.

Work-life balance and intention with the Oura ring

Oura Ring Generation 3 Review

If you’re anything like me, you are curious to know how it is to wear an Oura ring, what data you receive, and how this looks.

When I consider buying something – especially if it’s in the price range of an Oura ring – I want to know exactly what’s behind the few features highlighted on a sales page.

What functions are there?

Is there even more to it?

Is it practical to use?

Is it accurate?


What’s cool about the Oura ring is that they do an amazing job of describing your full experience on their high-end home page.

You can go there to research what the ring can do.

And it helps better understand the data and the app once you bought it.


Here’s a summary of it all, together with my take, as someone who wore an Oura ring for months (I have the Generation 3 ring, in silver heritage design).

Let’s look at all Oura ring functions and features in detail.

Design and Fit of the Oura Ring Generation 3

A good fit for your Oura ring is absolutely crucial!

If it doesn’t fit, it will not measure correctly or at all.

Ideally, wear it on the index finger. The middle finger and ring finger are alternative options that might work too.

Oura will send you a free sizing kit so that you can confidently choose the correct ring size.


Note that Oura ring sizes are not 1:1 like standard ring sizes so even if you know your ring size it’s a good idea to order the sizing kit to confirm your guess.

I have done a full guide on the Oura ring sizing process, check it out here:

036 | The Ultimate Oura Ring Size Guide Finding Your Perfect Fit XS

Oura Ring Pricing

You pay a lot for colors!

The pricing of the Oura rings is a bit …surprising.

Truth is: You pay extra for design. A lot!

Currently, there are two different designs of Oura ring:

Heritage is the original ring design with a plateau top.

Horizon is the newer design, fully round, and a slightly bit thicker.

Both rings come with the exact same technical capabilities, so no functional differences there.


The 5 Colors are silver, black (glossy black), stealth (matte black), gold and (only in Horizon design:) rose gold.


The price difference between the Heritage in silver and Horizon in rose gold is 80%!

Oura ring 5 color options

Just be aware of that before you decide on a color.

My opinion

I would have loved the rose gold ring but the price turned me away from that option. Matte black seemed too risky to turn out to look too bulky so I went for silver.

And honestly, it was the right choice all along.

What I love about the silver Oura ring is that it does not at all give away that it’s a smart wearable. People who have never heard of Oura will just think it’s a piece of jewelry if you wear it in the jewelry color you most often wear.

I was surprised that I didn’t get one single “What is that thing on your finger?” question with the silver ring. Which I like; the risk of it looking or feeling too bulky and foreign on my finger was the main fear before buying.

…So in turn – if you want it as a conversation starter – go with a different color than your usual jewelry, or jewelry at all (for example with black).



Fair pricing, compared to other wearables

Apart from the fact that you pay so much extra for color, the price is reasonable. It’s priced below the Apple Watch, in the higher range of other wearable smart devices and fitness trackers.

This is absolutely fair since it’s a lot smaller than other wearables, typically wristbands, and it gives a very detailed analysis that is visualized extremely well.

Oura Ring Unboxing and First Impression

Oura gives you a premium experience!

The comparison that came to my mind multiple times was that it feels like opening an Apple product. In the best way possible – nice, high-quality packaging, everything meticulously sorted, you know what to do and where to pull.

From the sizing kit to the box of the real ring and even the video instructions, it was just a very satisfying unboxing experience.

Oura ring unboxing

Battery Life of the Oura Ring Generation 3

I was impressed by Oura’s battery life when I first started to use it.

The official home page states up to 7 days battery life and a charging time of 20 to 80 minutes.

Battery levels are displayed on the home screen of the app (there’s no indication on the ring itself).

From my personal experience, the battery lasted min. 3 days – max. 5 days. Battery life depends on the functions you use, whether or not you put your ring into airplane mode and temperatures. A full charge ranges between 30 and 45 minutes when it’s completely empty.


Charging is really easy and convenient:

There’s a charging dock that holds your ring perfectly. Simply put the ring on. The control light on the dock will pulse when the ring is charging and turn green when the battery is full.


What I like to do is try to remember charging before it’s completely empty so that charging only takes around 20 minutes – this way it’s less likely that I forget the ring on the charging station for a full day.

Oura ring how to charge

Oura App

The absolutely necessary companion to your Oura ring is the Oura app.

With the app, you initially install your ring.

During regular use, you get infos on your ring, like battery levels, notifications (for example your ideal time to go to bed, or reminders to move your body), and of course, all the data that your Oura ring tracks.

The Oura Ring app does an amazing job of visualizing all the data in an easy-to-understand way; it gives you exactly what you need to know, in a format that you can easily comprehend.

The app is structured in the following way:

Home Screen

On the home screen, you have info on your ring (battery levels, info on your personal device (like serial number), etc.), the main menu, and a bottom menu for detailed insights into each area of tracking.

The main part of the home screen shows activity score, readiness score, sleep score, and heart rate graph.

Then, based on your personal focus areas (you will define those when installing your ring), you will get selected trends.

If you’ve chosen to track your female cycle, your body temperature graph will also show on the home screen.

On top of this main screen, you have the option to change the day, to review data of past days. And there is a button where you can add tags, workout sessions (workouts need to be added manually), or [for females] the start of your period to your day.

Oura ring app home screen

Sleep Score Screen

The sleep score tab gives you insight into your sleep cycles.

It’s Oura’s prime feature, and what sets the ring apart from a usual fitness tracker.

By measuring your resting heart rate, movement, and body temperature, the Oura ring is able to measure your sleep stages, in a very precise way for a non-medical device.

You will get visualizations of sleep cycles (light, deep, REM, time awake), detailed graphs for sleep cycles and heart rates during the night, and an overall sleep quality score; the Oura sleep staging algorithm is definitely advanced.

I like that on top of the overall score, you will get the factors that contribute to the overall score, rated individually, with a small explanation of what is ideal.

So when your score is not ideal, you know which areas to improve.

Oura ring app sleep

Activity Score Screen

Similar to sleep, your activity is shown in a few nicely visualized graphs, an overall score, and the factors that contribute to the overall score.

You get insights into active time, step count, and calorie burn.

The activity score is the one that needs the most manual inputs: While the other metrics are collected automatically, the activity score gets a lot more precise when you enter your workouts (including movement in your every day like walking). Workouts you will always need to add for the current day, and you will need to select the type of activity and enter the time span.

Oura ring app activity screen

Readiness Score Screen

The last detailed metric is your readiness.

The readiness score will tell you how prepared you are to tackle the day. It measures your body’s recovery response, so basically the balance of activity and rest.

Resting heart rate is the most important factor, along with activity from the previous day, and some 14-day average scores.
Oura ring app readiness


Lastly, there is a tab with practical resources. Think guided meditations, breathing exercises, and soundscapes for better sleep, and learning.

In the learning sessions, you get small nuggets of information, with science-backed guidance on how to ideally shape your routines.

Oura ring app ressources

Subscription with Oura Ring Generation 3

Important to mention is that, from the Oura generation 3 forward, all those detailed functions are only available with a monthly subscription.

There is the option to manage your ring and view some basic metrics without a subscription, but the valuable insights are behind this monthly subscription paywall of currently around 6$/€.

That’s a big factor to consider when deciding if you want to invest in an Oura ring.

My Thoughts on the Oura Ring and its Ability to Track Stress and Work-Life Balance

Oura Health Tracking – Personal Experience

Sleep Tracking with the Third Generation Oura Ring

Sleep tracking was one of the main reasons why I bought the Oura ring.

I love that this smart ring doesn’t only look at activity but also measures sleep quality and gives you a daily sleep score. It measures three stages in your sleep cycle – REM sleep, light sleep, and deep sleep.

Let me say: It’s remarkable how precisely the Oura ring tracks sleep cycle patterns! Apparently, it’s the most precise sleep tracker outside professional sleep labs; their sleep algorithms are definitely on point.

From my experience, it was noticing when I fall asleep on point.

The sleep phases were insightful to reflect on – I had a look at the scores and values of the sleep phases every few days and reflected on how I felt during those days. Interestingly, I often didn’t notice my sleep efficiency decreasing as fast as the smart ring did. In contrast to that, I overestimated time awake during rougher nights – when I thought that I was not falling back asleep for half an hour, for example, my sleep data revealed that yes, I was awake during the times I noticed. But also that I was back asleep in between and actually didn’t have a lot of awake time at all.

I truly think that Oura will help you evaluate sleep in a granular way, objectively, and form better sleep habits.

Oura ring should you buy it?

Activity & step count with Oura Ring Gen. 3

What I like about the Oura ring’s activity tracking functions is that generally, it records your heart rate throughout the day, not only during a recorded workout session.

I found that if you want accurate tracking, you will need to log your activity data manually (you can do this until the end of the day) or record it actively (through the workout heart rate tracking function). Otherwise, Oura will miss a lot of times in the day when you were active – especially for low heart rate activity in your daily routine, like walking.

This makes sense so that your Oura ring gets a better picture and doesn’t purely measure according to your heart rate.

The Oura ring considers 3 levels of physical activity: Low, middle, and high intensity.

Step count accuracy and calories burned accuracy is hard to judge because I didn’t wear other health tracking devices where I could compare the tracking results. The Oura home page states that the step count could be off when you engage in activity with heavy hand movements (as with a fitness tracking bracelet or Apple watch). What I could see though is that the ring’s tracking was much more complete than my phone’s step count on apple health (your phone will never be on you as much as a wearable).

Oura ring doing sports

Readiness Score with Oura Ring Third Generation

The overall readiness score is one of the values that don’t say much to me. But what’s interesting is the single components that make up the overall score.

This section looks at balance. It evaluates if you’re active enough but then rest accordingly. It compares your heart rate variability and resting pulse to your downtime to see if you’re truly relaxing when you’re not active.

I found that these balanced values set the Oura ring apart from so many other health tracking devices which tend to give the impression that more is more (more activity, more steps, more calories burnt; not looking at recovery and a healthy mix).

Oura ring reflection

Female Health Tracking with Third Gen. Oura Ring (Body Temperature)

This ring has temperature sensors that measure your body temperature throughout the day and night. Those values are influencing some of the above-mentioned scores. So it only makes sense that Oura uses this feature for female cycle tracking and period prediction (your nighttime skin temperature values are used, for as much accuracy as possible).

Hormones’ rise and fall throughout the female natural cycles make your body cooler during the first half and warmer during the second half of your cycle. Factors like hormonal birth control can influence your natural cycles.

I found it interesting to track my cycle, especially comparing variability across multiple cycles. It gives you a better understanding of your body and opens the door for more in-depth research.

Oura ring - female cycles period prediction

How these health data points helped me to reflect on my work-life balance

It was jaw-dropping how precise and detailed the Oura sleep tracking is.

From my experience, sleep is one of the key indicators for a healthy lifestyle long-term. It’s also one of the values that will flag first and go back to normal last in hectic times. It was crazy to see that long after I thought I was back to normal, my nightly heart rate reflected my impression. This means: My body still dealt with stress for weeks after a stressful time.

With the Oura ring, I truly saw the physical effects of a stressful period at work on my body.

Knowing the patterns, I can recognize better when stress starts to have an effect on my body again and compensate with extra stress-relieving activities.


Another data point I try to keep an eye on is heart rate: It’s helpful to look at the heart rate graph at the end of the day and try to recognize what activity I was doing during a remarkable peak or dip. That’s a good indicator of what stresses your body more than you think, and which activities can help relax.


Monitoring and reflecting on sleep and activity data helped me to make small but impactful adjustments to my everyday life.

Oura Ring 3 Review Conclusion: Should you buy an Oura Ring?

The Oura ring can unlock precious insights into the signs our body sends out.

I truly think that if we reflect on the tracked data and compare it with our conscious impressions we get a step closer to early recognizing (un)healthy patterns. Add your overall feelings and deeper reflection to the mix and you might uncover why you are happy or unfulfilled in your life.


Of course, all data in the world is useless if you don’t act on it.

The smart ring will do the activity tracking but you will need to get your ass off the couch.

The Oura app will tell you your ideal time to go to bed and wake up but you will need to form habits for your nighttime routine that are calming.

On the contrary, the ring will give you recommendations on how to improve your lifestyle and if you do pay attention and take action, you can see the effects in your health metrics pretty fast, within a few days or weeks: Breathing regularly will improve blood oxygen, consistent sleeping times will improve your sleep scores, and a balanced mix of different intense activities will score higher than a few very intense workouts.

In summary: Is the Oura ring worth it?

There’s no magic pill. You will need to put in the work every day to get and keep a healthy and balanced life. If you’re ready for that, I think that the Oura ring can get you there faster and will give you more understanding than you would ever reach with your own tracking or journal reflections.

Oura ring - should you buy it?
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Oura Ring Generation 3 Review – Can it track work-life balance?

Sep 5, 2023 | PRODUCTIVITY, My Productivity Secrets, Product Reviews

Last updated: Nov 06, 2023

by Corinne

by Corinne

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