If your birthday falls between approximately June 21 and July 22, then congrats: That means your zodiac sign is Cancer (but you probably already knew that!). Cancers are the gentle nurturers of the zodiac who excel at building safe spaces and taking care of the people around them — and Cancer energy can help us to get in touch with our feelings and those of others.
"Cancer is an ocean of emotion, submerged in infinite consciousness and intuitive memory. It is where we find both the mother and the home within ourselves," Cancer-born astrologer Valerie Mesa tells Bustle.
Whether you're a Cancer, your crush or partner is a Cancer, or you just want to learn more about the 12 signs of the zodiac, here's the lowdown on everything you need to know about Cancer zodiac traits — and what it means if Cancer is a major influence in your astrological birth chart.
Cancer: The Zodiac's Caregiver
Cancer is represented by the symbol of the crab, which speaks to their constant desire to retreat into the safety of their outer shells in order to protect their sensitive inner core. This emotional sign is ruled by the moon, which speaks to their maternal instincts and nostalgic nature. Because Cancers are cardinal signs, the leaders of the zodiac, they're blessed with a deep sentimental strength, and a knack for creating environments where feelings can come to the surface and vulnerability can reign supreme. Cancer's element is water, so they relate to the world through their hearts and connect with others through their sense of compassion.
Just as crabs immerse themselves in the ever-changing tides of the ocean's waves, Cancers often immerse themselves in the ever-changing moods of everyone around them — they’re keenly perceptive to other people's feelings and excel when it comes to making others feel nurtured and protected. Comfort and emotional safety is important for a Cancer, so they will only open up to someone if they feel they're being provided the same sense of energetic protection in return.
Cancer In Love & Relationships
Cancer's romantic traits make them some of the most devoted and nurturing lovers of the zodiac. They're protective of their feelings and don't open up to others easily, but once they do, they enjoy pouring themselves into an emotionally-involved relationship and tending to their partner's needs. They’re capable of being deeply committed in love. Because they're creatures of habit, they appreciate a reliable and even routine-oriented relationship dynamic. Cancers have a tendency to live in their memories, so they may feel wistful about past relationships, even long after they're over.
The signs most compatible with Cancer are fellow water signs Scorpio and Pisces, as well as earth signs Taurus and Virgo. Astrologer Clarisse Monahan previously told Bustle that even Capricorn can be compatible with Cancer, too. "When [Capricorns] meet their soulmate, they tend to take a conventional approach to the relationship, going down the traditional trajectory of marriage, home, etc. which aligns with Cancer." While all zodiac sign pairings can find ways to make it work romantically, the signs that are least compatible with Cancer include Leo, Sagittarius, and Aquarius, according to Monahan.
Cancers love to be comfortable and appreciate privacy, so if you're looking to impress one, plan your dates in cozy, intimate spaces that aren't too loud or hectic. Cooking dinner at home and cuddling on the couch for a movie is also an ideal romantic evening for a Cancer.
If Cancer Is Your Sun Sign...
Your sun sign symbolizes your vital life force, spirit, intellect, and identity, astrologer Ashley Otero previously told Bustle. If Cancer is your sun sign, then tender-heartedness and empathy are some of your greatest gifts. Cancers are deeply in touch with their emotions, even if they're quickly shifting from one mood to another. You're extremely sensitive and perceptive — but your feelings are hurt easily. If you feel too exposed, you may put up a wall that keeps others from potentially wounding you. It's important to surround yourself with loving people who give as much thought and care into life as you do.
Sensitivity is one of Cancer’s strengths, but be careful not to deflect and focus too much energy on tending to the people around you. Many Cancers can benefit from strengthening boundaries so that they don't lose themselves in other people's problems. You need to be nurtured too, Cancer!
If Cancer Is Your Moon Sign...
Your moon sign represents your more private, emotional, and vulnerable side, and also speaks to what makes you feel taken care of. If your moon sign is Cancer, then you're probably deeply in touch with yourself and can easily be swept away in memories. Cancer moons can be private about their feelings, but their naturally empathic nature indicates that their emotions run deep, even if they don't always show them. Cancer moons have a tendency to be a bit moody and prone to sudden bouts of melancholy or excitement (as the fast-moving moon changes zodiac signs every few days).
If Cancer Is Your Rising Sign...
Your rising sign represents your surface-level self and the version of you that you present to the outside world. If your rising sign is Cancer, you probably come off as a warm, considerate, and sympathetic person. You're dreamy and romantic, and make people feel at ease in your presence. When it comes to your personal style, sophisticated but comfy beauty looks are your bread and butter.
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