Everything you need to know about being a water sign

Astrology is about so much more than knowing your zodiac sign and checking your horoscope regularly. To truly unlock how the cosmos can inform your day-to-day life, there are a few things that are key to understand. For example, you might be a Cancer, but an integral aspect of that identity is the elemental category it falls under, water. Water signs, like their other three counterparts—air, fire, and earth—share innate traits with other zodiac signs in their element. The elemental grouping also shows commonalities in how each sign relates to the natural world.

So what does it mean to be a water sign, specifically? Since we’re transitioning into Cancer season, the first water sign season of the Zodiac, we spoke with astrologer Lisa Stardust about what to know. Get ready to feel some feels, ocean-dwelling signs of the world, because having water as your element can translate to a lot of emotion.

What does it mean to be a water sign?

According to Stardust, the three water signs—Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces—”use emotion and sentimentality to help them navigate through their lives.” Unlike air signs who are led completely by intellect, water signs are strictly guided by intuition and will use gut feelings to determine their choices. Some water signs may even have empathic abilities because they’re so in tune with emotions that they can pick up on others’ feelings and internalize them as their own.

Pisces, as the last sign of the zodiac, can also often seem to intuit the future, and they let this ability propel them forward. The most water-y of the water signs, Pisces will dreamily drift where their hearts take them. Sometimes this can mean getting caught up in a romanticized situation, but a Pisces prefers idealism to realism.


Water signs’ ability to empathize also makes them excellent friends and partners. “They always want to nurture and help others no matter what the cost is,” Stardust says. Cancer, for example, is known for being the mother-figure of the zodiac. Even when it goes against their best interests, Cancers will be your shoulder to cry on and help pull you out of a dark time.

Sensitive sometimes to a fault, water signs also feel emotional conflict acutely. Scorpio is perhaps the best example of this; Scorpios will take their time when trusting others and if they are ever betrayed, they find no room for forgiveness. Though a Scorpio has the capacity to be a lifelong friend or loyal partner, you typically get one chance with them and that’s it.

Who are water signs compatible with?

Stardust says that water signs tend to be most compatible with earth signs—Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn—”because they rely on earth signs to add reason to their feelings.” Like water signs, earth signs share a sentimentality but it’s often more grounded. They value stability and romance in partners, which water signs are very much open to giving. In turn, earth signs will have long talks about emotions with water signs to understand their partners on a deeper level. When earth signs and water signs get together, it typically evolves into long-term, meaningful relationships.

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