For many folks, sun sign compatibility feels like a simple, straightforward way to figure out if you and your crush are astrologically aligned—no need to demand (um, that is, politely ask…) for the birth time of your would-be love match and pull any natal charts. But spoiler alert: While hat primary placement is important (more on that below), there are plenty of other planetary factors that influence romantic potential.
Understanding what nourishes you requires looking at your moon sign. Homing in on what you find beautiful and pleasurable means looking at your Venus placement. To clarify aspects of your desire (read: your sex drive), as well as how you go about pursuing things that you want, takes inspecting what sign rules Mars for you.
“All of these things—needs, pleasure, desires—make up part of who we are, and seeing whether we jive with another on these levels is one of the reasons why keying in on other astrological factors can be so helpful in compatibility,” says Stephanie Gailing, astrologer and author of The Complete Book of Dreams. “While our sun sign gives us insight into our essence—what it is that makes us feel vital and alive and the way in which we want to shine—it doesn’t reflect all the nuances of who we are.”
Before you get bummed out by this, it’s worth noting that Gailing’s advice offers one major silver lining to anyone who likes someone whose sun sign isn’t considered harmonious with their own. That fact alone isn’t enough to “thank u next” the connection, she says. “When we’re looking for compatibility, we want to ideally be able to understand the numerous facets that make up ourselves and our potential partner,” Gailing explains.
So what intel does your sun sign offer you about your romantic relationships?
“It tells you important things about another person,” Gailing says. “It gives you insights into what lights them up, what inspires them, how they orient, and how they design the galaxy of their lives. Knowing this gives you incisive awareness that can help you see if you are aligned with each other on this level.”
When it comes solely to sun sign compatibility, think: opposites attract
Gailing points out that there’s still many many ways to deduce a good love match with sun signs alone. But if you want to simplify it, she thinks opposite signs make for exceptionally powerful couples. She points out that you’re ultimately matching with someone who has the qualities that don’t come naturally to you but that you could benefit from integrating into your life.
“The other [represents] what you have challenges finding within yourself, but which is an inherent part of who you are,” she says. “You are mirrors for each other.”
Here’s the romantic rundown for your sign and its astrological opposite
Aries rules the astrological house of self while Libra rules the house of partnerships. And it’s through Libra’s Venus-oriented love for love that Aries lights up.
“Through your Libran partner you can channel your passion into projects that yield beauty and pleasure, including your relationship,” Gailing says. “You can further understand how to marshal your will and pursue challenges that will make your world even more beautiful.”
Taurus is down-to-earth to the point of getting stuck in the same place, living placidly among the daffodil fields. It’s a Scorpio that can take you to the underworld and unlock your true power.
“You’re a master of the known and your Scorpio partner can help you dive deep below the surface so that you have a more 360-degree understanding of life,” Gailing says. “You’re both success oriented and as you’re both tuned into your sensuality, you may find your sex life filled with sparks.”
Sagittarius might see the world a little bit differently than you—these are wise philosophers, near-spiritual compared to your in-the-moment way of thinking. But this makes them the perfect mental match, and (praise be!) a totally game travel partner for that trip to Bali.
“The Archer will help you channel your curiosity and need-to-know nature to discover greater meaning in life; you can have amazing adventures together that will keep you forever learning while inspiring your youthful spirit,” Gailing says.
Cancer is constantly seeking a home, like a hermit crab going from one shell to the next. While Capricorn isn’t the emotional well as you are, they show their love with demonstrations of support, stability, and enough green to buy that deluxe Lace Murex seashell you’ve been eyeing.
“You both prize reliability and loyalty,” says Gailing. “Capricorn’s penchant for hard work and success can feel really grounding, and you can create a beautiful home life together.”
Leo and Aquarius both shine in completely different ways, but intersect over their love of people. Leo is the performer for the masses, and Aquarius is making their concert a charity event.
“Your creative spirit can shine when partnered with an Aquarius, who can show you how you can channel your generosity and unique talents to reach more people and contribute to the world at large,” says Gailing. “Plus, they will encourage you to be yourself yet not take yourself too seriously.”
Virgo has the tendency to be tightly wound, and while free-floating Pisces might seem foreign to them, they have the perfect healer’s touch for that tension. Plus, they’ll accept you for who you are, which Virgo tends to struggle with on a personal level.
“Your Pisces partner can help you to relax and see the world in a more poetic and soulful way,” says Gailing. “You’ll further understand how things are connected and how all the pieces make the whole, something that you love.”
Alright, so let’s start circling back! If air sign Libra is the wind that fans the flames, fire sign Aries is the spark that lights the fire. That is to say that Libra, you’d be better off with a motivator.
“Sometimes you need a little prodding to make a decision and encouragement to take action on the ways in which you want to uphold beauty and justice in the world,” Gailing says. “For this, and other reasons, Aries can be an incredible partner who can help you galvanize your spirit, even helping you learn to fight for what it is that you want, rather than helping others to pursue their needs.”
While Taurus never mocks Scorpio’s dramatic nature per se, they’re the only ones who can make your woes tangible, and therefore, solvable.
“Taurus can help you ground your highly emotional nature,” Gailing says. “While you naturally swim in the deep end, they can help you create shape and form in your life that has you healthfully channel your intensity, passion, and drive.”
We know that Sagittarius and Gemini are perfect life mates, running at the same speed, intellectualizing with equal brains. But when Sag gets too existential, Mercury-minded Gemini is there to help them see the details.
“You love the big picture but sometimes you may miss the trees for the forest, which Gemini can help you to perceive and appreciate,” Gailing says. “Their curiosity and zest for life is a great match for yours.”
While Cancer will lean on Cap for support in their quest for a happy home, Capricorn will lean on Cancer for everything else. No one else is more qualified for nurturing.
“If you need someone who will not only cheerlead your success but be affectionate, helping you to feel well taken care of, say hello to your Cancer partner,” says Gailing.
Aquarius is a natural humanitarian, and that isn’t always appreciated. Leo, who has a lion’s heart and generous nature, values you and your work more than anyone.
“With your altruistic spirit, you generally care for others and yet sometimes you forget about yourself and how special and beautiful you are,” Gailing says. “Your Leo partner will shower you with love and help you to further claim your unique creative talents, which can only help you continue to be the world visionary that you are.”
While Pisces is working to manifest their dreams from a misty haze, Virgo actually has the spreadsheets to get from point A to point B. And that viewpoint, believe it or not, is appreciated.
“Sometimes your poetic and romantic soul needs a bit of grounding so that you can truly make your dreams a reality,” says Gailing. “Enter Virgo, a stellar partner who, like you, understands that everything is connected; together your relationship can be so healing for each other, as well as others.”
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