Sometimes I feel like Mother Earth will have to rip summertime right out of my lil' sunshine-loving paws herself in order for me to let it go — but alas, time inevitably goes on, seasons change, and every beverage and snack you thought you trusted suddenly becomes pumpkin spice flavored: There's no escaping fall. But this change of season isn't just marked by a flurry of pumpkin spice — it's an astronomical event known as the autumnal equinox. This event has major astrological influence, too, so you should be aware of how the 2018 autumn equinox affects your zodiac sign. This year, it falls on Saturday, Sep. 22, and there are changes on the horizon for everyone.
So what's actually happening during the autumnal equinox? Well, essentially it's when the Earth's equator directly faces the sun, meaning that neither of the planet's axes are tilting either toward or away from our solar system's #1 star. Because of this, it's one of only two times per year (the other being — you guessed it — the spring equinox) that the day and the night are almost exactly equal in length.
The equinox can be a time of mixed emotions. On the one hand, it represents abundance and the harvest, so it's a time to celebrate. Yet there is an undertone of solemnity, too, as it marks our descent toward winter's harsher weather and shorter days. "This time of year has become connected to 'harvest' and reaping the fruits of our labor," explained Tarot.com. "At the same time, it brings up a certain respect for the fact that now, nights will become longer and it's time to conserve energy and resources." Post-equinox, the days will grow shorter and the nights longer until we hit the winter solstice in December, which marks the longest night of the year.
The autumn equinox also coincides with the transition from Virgo season to Libra season. Throughout Virgo season, all signs have been clearing the clutter out of their lives and examining what they're working with and how best to move forward. It was sort of a planning stage. Now, Libra, being the sign of equality and diplomacy, will ask us to start moving on those plans. It's time to strengthen our relationships of all kinds and re-order our lives to stay balanced. Bustle spoke with astrologer Lisa Stardust, who explains, "As the season shifts, we are all becoming more partnership-oriented, intellectual, and fair-minded as we embrace autumn." Embracing balance and partnerships is a major theme here for all zodiac signs, so make it a focus — especially considering we have a particularly rough and emotional September full moon in Aries coming up post-equinox.
Here's how the autumnal equinox is going to affect each zodiac sign, along with tips on how each sign should embrace the energy of this brand-new season.
Aries (March 21 - April 19)
Leadership is most definitely hardwired into your nature, Aries, but under Libra's ever-diplomatic influence, it's time to step back and try to work collaboratively. "The new season shifts your focus on to partnerships, forcing you to be more relationship-oriented and putting the needs of others before yours," Stardust shares. You always have the energy to charge ahead of the crowd, but this season, you might be surprised how much more you can achieve if you put that energy toward others.
Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
Pampering yourself usually comes naturally to you, Taurus, but this wild, wild summer may have thrown you off your self-care game a little bit. That's OK, though — you were focused on other things, and now's your opportunity to indulge in those very-Venus beauty urges in the name of self-care. "The equinox refreshes your beauty and self-care regimes, motivating you to take better care of yourself," shares Stardust. Go ahead, splurge on some healthy groceries, new beauty products, and a face mask or two.
Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
Don't worry about summer love, Gemini — the equinox and Venus-ruled Libra season have some autumn surprises in store for you. "Romance is on the horizon, as you celebrate the new season with a hot new crush who heightens your intellectual desires," says Stardust. Try not to fall too head over heels, as we're also approaching Venus retrograde, which can turn your love life upside-down. But def allow your free spirit to feel its feels when it comes to connecting with this new and potentially special person.
Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Seasons change, and so do we, Cancer — it's all part of the cycle. "As Summer ends and we slip into a new season, your inner beliefs are shifting, creating change from within your shell," explains Stardust. Don't turn away from this natural ebb and flow — the equinox along with the Harvest moon is asking us to embrace change and deal with all the emotions that come along with it. It's offering you a fresh start and a chance to re-evaluate old beliefs, so go with it.
Leo (July 23 - Aug. 22)
While being social isn't likely something you struggle with, Leo, this equinox will bring a deep craving for even more authentic and truthful connections with the people in your life. "The equinox highlights your desire to communicate with others," notes Stardust. "[S]haring your insights with your peers will allow you to feel seen and heard." When you're unafraid to be your authentic self, it'll inspire others to embrace their truth, too. Let that motto guide you in partnerships throughout the season.
Virgo (Aug. 23 - Sept. 22)
While your sign is usually pretty good with finances, the current Venus retroshade has money matters feeling topsy-turvy. Use the energy of the equinox to set a financial plan for yourself. "Aligning your money management with the equinox will prove beneficial for you, as the stars will guide you to financial success this season," advises Stardust. Set time aside this weekend to focus on short-term finance goals, and revisit it throughout the season to stay on track. The energy is on your side, so it's worth it!
Libra (Sept. 23 - Oct. 22)
And a happy Libra season to you! The autumn equinox is extra-special for you, Libra, as it begins the sun's annual trip through your home sign. "The Sun shines it’s light on you, making you more inclined to make sure your life is balanced during this new season," says Stardust. Embrace your most Libran talents by re-evaluating what areas in your life need more of your energy. A re-balancing act may be in order, and it'll be fully possible to stay committed since you'll be working with equinox's natural balancing energy.
Scorpio (Oct. 23 - Nov. 21)
As the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, you'll find yourself changing too, Scorpio — but probably not in the ways you'd expect. "The equinox will be transformative, as it’s a time of inner reflection for you, Scorpio," explains Stardust. You're no stranger to facing your deep inner-well of emotions, but really listen to them now. Your tides are changing in important ways, so embrace the flow over the coming season. Shed your old skin and allow the most realized version of you to shine.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22 - Dec. 21)
The autumn equinox represents the harvest of all the year's work. Cultures around the world have celebrated this throughout history, and right now, you're likely to feel that same urge to connect with others and show gratitude. "You are more group-focused right now, opting to celebrate the equinox with your crew, as you are looking forward to even more autumnal good times," shares Stardust. Some people may not feel like celebrating, but your contagious lust for life will boost everyone's spirits, so be authentic.
Capricorn (Dec. 22 - Jan. 19)
Achieving whatever you put your mind to is basically your magic power, Capricorn. And right now the equinox, under Libra's influence, has you feeling extra partnerships-oriented in the workplace. As Stardust shares, "Your ability to diplomatically handle issues at work will be revered during the seasonal change, which means more respect for you, dear Capricorn!" Trust that you know what the right move is, and keep compassion in mind as you navigate your working relationships. It'll only lead you to more success.
Aquarius (Jan. 20 - Feb. 18)
The equinox is an ideal time for gratitude, but it's also a time to look toward and prepare for the future — which for you, Aquarius, is a really exciting prospect. "The light is shining on your future hopes today, awakening your desires for change and transformation through a spiritual awakening," says Stardust. You have big dreams and goals for the world and the future. Use the energy of this new beginning to fuel and inspire you to start taking steps — spiritually and otherwise — toward realizing them.
Pisces (Feb. 19 - March 20)
The intense energy of the equinox paired with the illuminating Harvest moon will have you feeling even more intuitive than usual. You have a natural gift for being able to easily access your spiritual self, Pisces, so don't sleep on it! "This is a really great time to embrace your magical power and focus your energies into occult studies," advises Stardust. Embrace the shadows and listen to your inner voice. Plan a ritual for the equinox with some Harvest moon crystals to kick off the new season.