The Hamsa– Up or Down? Which is the Right Way to Wear it?


The Hamsa– Up or Down?  Which is the Right Way to Wear it? - Alef Bet by Paula

What is the right way to wear a hamsa amulet? From “Om” to “Shalom” 

The Hamsa hand, as featured below, is an amulet, and one of our most familiar and favorite symbols to wear as fine, precious, and even costume jewelry.


hamsa hand blue necklace

Hamsa Hand Necklace

We’re constantly asked about the meaning of the hamsa hand and which way to wear it- up or down. 

Is there a specific meaning if the fingers are facing up or if they’re down?

And what about the fingers-- open or closed?

Let's talk about the blue hamsa hand in the photo above.  It's a very feminine, small, but a very fiery blue Hamsa pendant suspended from a sterling silver chain. And if you notice, the fingers are pointing down.

Don't worry, we will dive into the placement of the fingers.  but first, let’s talk about this strangely shaped amulet with the fingers in the shape of a hand, fused together, and without a thumb.

Is it religious?


This is truly a cross-cultural moment, because the Chamsa, as we know it, is not a Hindu or Buddhist symbol.

It's not a Jewish symbol.

It's not a Christian symbol.

It’s not a Muslim symbol.

It’s actually a talisman, an amulet that is worn to protect against the evil eye and all negative energies.

A talisman that is 100% multi-cultural.

Now, come on--- you have to agree with me here that religion and protection shouldn’t belong exclusively to one religion.  The protection against evil and negativity should be shared by all.  

But, you may be asking (before we get into the history of the five-fingered hand) about the position of the good luck symbol?

Does the hand go up or down? Should the fingers point towards the sky or down to the floor? 

Is there a meaning when it’s up or when it's down? Is there a right-side-up or an upside-down interpretation in other words?

hamsa hand sparkle bracelet in gold

Hamsa Hand Bracelet

Let’s break it down:

When the Hamsa hand faces down it is often interpreted as a gesture of welcoming into your life an abundance of goodness.  Of kindness, friendship, and grace-- of all that the universe has to offer.

You will often see the fingers in the downward position as fused together, to further deliver luck.  The hand facing down also blesses one with fertility and answers prayers and manifestations. This is the most common way you will see the hand, with the fingers pointing down.

But what about facing up?

hamsa facing up necklace

Hamsa Necklace

When the Hamsa hand is facing up, it is a universal sign against evil. It is a powerful sign of protection and shields us from our inner thoughts of hatred, jealousy, and insecurities. Often, in this position, the fingers are spread apart to ward off evil.

On the other side of the “spectrum,” some people feel that, like with a horseshoe, the symbol seems “luckier” if the direction is up, not down. Thus, the luck won’t spill out.

We’re not here to choose for you, just to lay out the facts about the hand.

Here’s the thing: lots of our customers practice yoga, and the hamsa hand truly is one of their favorite pieces to wear while in the “Om” space—we have to say, the charm does look really sleek and modern on a spaghetti-strap tank top. 

Or in your home.

hamsa for house

Om for your home

The Indian Vedic scriptures have a beautiful tradition of powerful, symbolic hand postures called mudras, but that’s a whole different thing.  A yoga-thing you can say. But, since it has to do with the hand, and we are writing about a hamsa hand, it does go hand-in-hand with this blog, no pun intended.



In any case, there’s always the Hamsa, at a yoga studio near you, doing the downward dog and sun salutation.

And, if you are a yogi- please feel free to correct on any of the yoga poses!

Back to the hand:

Jews call this hand-shaped amulet the Hand of Miriam.

In the Islamic world it is called the Hand of Fatima.

Most commonly, it is just known as a hamsa hand.  But it can be spelled with a c or a k.  Chamsa or Khamsa. 

And it’s very artistic as well.  

wall hand hamsa


From elephants to flowers, birds, and fish, you’ll see all types of designs incorporating nature drawn within the hamsa.



You'll see it on clothing and in homes.

It's very popular to display a hamsa hand with an evil eye to watch over you in your home as well.  Side note: fantastic house-warming gifts.

Home Wall Decor

This hamsa, made for a man or a woman, highlights the tree of life inside of the pendant.  We call it the best of both worlds.


tree nature hamsa

Tree of Life Hamsa Jewelry

You'll even find it for tableware.

Isn't this appetizer dish gorgeous?


hamsa serving plate

But, most commonly you’ll see the lucky hamsa hand depicted with an evil eye in the center of its open palm, presumably to ward off negative energies, including the gaze of envy.

Here is an excellent example of an evil eye combined with a hamsa on a red string protection bracelet.  It can be worn on either the right or the left hand, usually the left.

red string hand bracelet

Hamsa Hand on Red String Bracelet

The association of wearing a bracelet with a lucky charm such as the hamsa bracelet featured above, or an evil eye on the left arm is that it’s on the same side as your heart.  But, if you’re a lefty, a bracelet might make you crazy on that hand-- we give you full permission to move it to the right wrist.

And if you want to know more about the red string, we have an entire blog post dedicated to just that: a red thread bracelet that we're sure you'll enjoy.

Berkeley scholar and folklorist, Professor Alan Dundes, incidentally Jewish, studied the origins of the evil eye for decades and identified the ancient cultures that live along the Sahara as the source of the specific practices and symbols we use to signify the evil eye today.

Dr. Dundes concluded that the arid desert landscape itself, in almost permanent drought, created a highly defensive and protective consciousness, where precious moisture, including tears, breast milk, and human spit, traditionally took on magical properties.

The brilliant and outrageous Dr. Dundes, unfortunately, is no longer with us.

Usually, the Hamsa hand points down.

Come to think of it, hamsa earrings might just be the answer to your quandary-- with a simple twist of the stud you can place the gold earring in any direction you'd like!

hamsa earrings

Hamsa Hand Earrings

So, lets recap:

We discussed the meanings of the fingers of the hamsa hand facing up or facing down. 

When the hamsa is facing down, or with fingers in the downward position, it is said that ushers in an abundance of goodness in your life.  

The fingers in the upward position, especially in the yoga world, it aids in calming insecurities such as jealousy and evil.


Let’s not judge, let us just be protected, right?

And partake in the beauty of this amulet.

Wear your Hamsa, and feel safe and empowered in your wonderful place in our amazing world.

We eat sushi in Texas.

We listen to vintage Rolling Stones anthems in space.

We facetime our relatives on another continent.

So, who’s to say whether the Hamsa should point up or down, or whether it “goes with” yoga?

So, how do you wear your hamsa?

P.S. you should also check out our suggested Amazon list of hamsa jewelry here.

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I wear my hamsa up, fingers closed, with an evil eye in the middle as a tattoo always. My jewelry swaps between up and down…

I enjoyed this blog and the part specifically about it not being related to any one religion, but being a talisman.


Love them would love to see more .

Heather Tennant

I very interesting site. With a lot of information And they have beautiful jewelry too !


the only thing that matters is how you feel period. down or up it’s still the hand of GOD

manuel sabater

the only thing that matters is how you feel period. down or up it’s still the hand of GOD

manuel sabater

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