Venus retrograde in Leo, July 22 to September 3, dares us to reset our romantic and financial strategies. (Challenge accepted!) Here’s how to maximize the three-part Venus retrograde cycle. Plus: your horoscope by zodiac sign and stress-saving advice if you have a wedding planned!
Venus is the planet of love, beauty and luxury, lending its decadent energy to every zodiac sign for 3-5 weeks each year. But that all changes during its retrograde cycles! Because the scorching hot planet dances back and forth through the zodiac, it lingers in a single sign (or a pair of signs some years) for four whole months!
Yes, like all the other planets in the zodiac, Venus turns retrograde periodically: Every 584 days to be exact. These reverse commutes last for six weeks and can throw our romantic lives into a bit of a tailspin. The hidden opportunity? To restore harmony and integrity to our love lives—and our financial lives, since Venus also rules the things we value like our money. More on that in a minute.
Venus retrograde meaning: What actually happens?
When Venus turns retrograde every 18 months, it changes from an evening star (visible at dusk) to morning star (visible right before dawn). In the middle of Venus’ shift from evening star to morning star, it actually disappears from the sky for 5-8 days!
Fun fact: The ancients thought Venus was two separate planets and thus has two Greek names: Phosphorus, “the bringer of light” for her morning star cycle, and Hesperus, “the star of the evening,” for her evening phase.
We see the Venus retrograde as a juicy opportunity to put old love stories to bed, write “the end” on chapters that need to close and then rewrite a brand new romantic script for yourself! Our Romance Reset program is designed to help you do just that! Whether you’re single, in a situationship or with your lifelong love, Romance Reset will bring the juice back to your love life!
Venus retrogrades challenge us to rise above—and it’s not always easy!
Just like with a Mercury retrograde, Venus’ periodic backspins can exhume ghosts of relationships past…or provoke sudden ghostings just when connections are heating up. Long-lost lovers may reunite but struggle to find their footing when it’s time to produce an actual “sequel.” Or that issue you thought you released in couple’s therapy a few years ago could rear up again!
Fun it’s not, but the challenge of Venus retrograde is to “bless the lesson” and ask, “What is this trying to teach me about my life?” Retrogrades provide a powerful inward lens to study our own patterns, habits and beliefs. Which ones might be limiting you from growing in the direction your soul truly needs?
Although the word retrograde may strike fear into your heart, this can be a productive time! Think of the Venus retrograde in Leo as your personal 40-day “reset” period.
The retrograde is a welcome opportunity to:
• Reawaken slumbering desires
• Get crystal clear about what you really want and need in love
• Say any necessary goodbyes
• Clear the decks for a brand new, 584-day cycle in your love life!
• Try our Romance Reset program!
What to watch for during the retrograde:
• Competition could get fierce
• Things you thought were “put to bed” can rise again (exes, problems you believed were solved, etc.)
• Obsessing over a romantic interest
• Trying to make plans but getting stuck (wait till Venus moves direct)
What to listen to while Venus is in Leo!
Try our curated playlist, curated by our in-house DJ, Astralselector
Back to the Venus retrograde in Leo: Brace for extra drama...
Curtain call! Love could imitate art while Venus retrogrades through passionate, theatrical Leo—but this may not be a “midsummer night’s dream.” In the sign of the fiery, dramatic lion, affairs of the heart could feel more like an immersive theater performance. Our advice? Enjoy the dopamine rush of attraction but wait until Venus corrects course on September 3 before doing any future planning.
Navigating the 3 phases of Venus retrograde in Leo
How Venus retrograde’s three phases work for you (you’ll experience them during the Venus retrograde dates for 2023: July 22-September 3).
Phase 1: At the beginning of the retrograde
Venus is an “evening star,” visible near the moon at dusk.
As Venus winds down from its evening star phase, the retrograde provides an opportunity to put old relationship issues to bed. You can also examine the “bedtime stories” you’re telling yourself about love. If the dream keeps becoming a nightmare, it’s time for some new strategies!
Phase 2: Midway through the 6-week retrograde cycle
Venus syncs up with the Sun and disappears from view for approximately 8 days.
In the middle of this transition, Venus vanishes from the sky—well, at least from our view here on Earth. The disappearing act happens approximately two weeks after the retrograde cycle begins—and lasts for about eight days. As Venus goes totally dark, you have blank canvas upon which you can imagine the future you want to create—not just in your love life, but also in all of your interpersonal relations.
This year, the rebirth of Venus happens on August 13, which might bring a major perspective shift around love! If you’ve been perpetually single, you may be inspired to put yourself out on the apps again. In fashion-forward Leo, beauty-queen Venus can inspire you to revamp your style or set up a sexy photo shoot. Start with mood boards, then shop for ‘fits and hire your snapper after the retrograde.
Phase 3: In the final part of the retrograde
Venus is “reborn,” rising again as a “morning star” just before dawn.
Venus reappears in the sky as a morning star on August 18 for the final part of the retrograde. When Venus ends its 6-week retrograde, you’ll be free to pen a new chapter in your love story—or write a new one altogether!
Your bottom-line takeaway for the Venus retrograde: The prefix “re” is where the magic’s at during a retrograde: revive, reunite, repair, restore, etc. So don’t bolt too fast if there’s a little trouble in paradise. This may just be an opportunity to fortify your foundation and learn more effective ways to communicate in relationships.
Some relationships may indeed come to a close during the Venus retrograde in Leo—and in cases like this, Venus can support with deep healing and self-love.
My wedding date is during Venus retrograde in Leo! Are we doomed?
It’s not astrologically ideal to get married during Venus retrograde, but let’s get real! Life doesn’t always happen according to the stars. Here are two workarounds for anyone with a wedding planned during the Venus retrograde in Leo (between July 22 and September 3, 2023):
Wedding workaround 1: Get licensed!
Get your marriage license before or after the retrograde. That way you’re making it official during an astrologically auspicious time.
Wedding workaround 2: Plan to renew your vows!
Renew your vows on your first wedding anniversary. Since Venus only spins retrograde every 18 months, it’s certain you’ll be in the clear a year from your wedding date that falls this year during the Venus retrograde in Leo.
So there’s no need to call off the caterers and elope to Vegas. But it wouldn’t hurt to squeeze in one extra therapy session before the nuptials, juuuuuust to be sure you’ve worked out all those final knots and fears! Check out our wedding horoscopes, too, for advice by zodiac sign!
Is there anything I should definitely avoid during Venus retrograde in Leo?
We gave you some ideas for how to navigate Venus retrograde in Leo, now, here are a few things you really, really ought to hold off doing until Venus moves direct on September 3 (and stays in Leo until October 8)! They are:
• Cosmetic surgeries
• Risky romantic behaviors
• Shotgun weddings
• Drastic makeovers
• Reigniting toxic relationships
Basic rule of Venus retrograde: avoid any changes to your look that are hard to undo. Everyone loves a fringe of bangs…until it’s time to grow them out! And maybe you try a temporary tattoo before you commit to the needle?! Also, that text you send to an ex could undo years of hard work in therapy, so just…don’t!
Your horoscope for the Venus retrograde in Leo
Below are horoscopes for every zodiac sign for the Venus retrograde in Leo, beginning Saturday, July 22. You can read for your Sun sign or your rising sign (ascendant). Visit our Cosmic Calculator section if you want to calculate your Rising sign or discover more about your personal astrology.
Aries (March 21-April 19)
Rocky romantic territory could complicate your love life starting on Saturday, July 22, as Venus turns retrograde in Leo and your zone of love until September 3. Since retrogrades rule the past, a former flame could resurface in an attempt to pull you back into their orbit.
But don’t forget—there’s a reason this one crashed and burned! This transit could also cause trouble within a seemingly solid LTR. If conflict erupts, don’t panic. The two of you CAN work through this, as long as you both commit to not playing the blame game! There may be certain issues you need to work through by yourself. Don’t be afraid to take accountability for your own behavior. Channeling some of your anxiety into a creative project could be a great way to distract yourself and get some incredible work done. Just wait to unveil your efforts until Venus resumes forward motion early September.
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
Domestic discord could surface starting on Saturday, July 22, as harmonious Venus (your ruler) turns retrograde in Leo until September 3. Conflict could begin to brew with a roommate, live-in lover, close friend or family member. Do your best to avoid any outsized outbursts, however. Escalating the issue will only raise your stress levels…and potentially make things worse. Disengage from the conversation until you’re able to handle things in a level-headed manner.
Because Venus also rules aesthetics, this cycle may motivate you to make certain cosmetic changes to your living space. But beware: You may want to wait to make any irreversible decisions (like knocking down that kitchen wall) until AFTER the Venus retrograde in Leo ends.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Harmonious Venus turns retrograde from Saturday, July 22 until September 3, potentially stirring up conflict within a few of your closest relationships. Tread carefully over the next six weeks, especially if tension has been brewing with a close person. Is it possible that the two of you just need a little space? Sometimes the best way to resolve an argument is to step away and come back to it after you’ve both had time to reflect.
On the plus side, this cycle could bring an old friend back into your orbit after a prolonged absence. With amorous Venus involved, this person may even be “the one that got away.” Regardless, dive into this renewed bond with an open mind and heart. Just avoid making any major decisions until after the retrograde ends in early September.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
On Saturday, July 22, luxurious Venus turns retrograde in Leo and your stability-seeking second house until September 3. On the love front, you could suddenly feel like a certain romantic situation is developing too quickly. Don’t be afraid to tell your sweetie that you’d like to take things a bit slower. There’s no sense in rushing into premature commitment—in fact, it could cause things to collapse. Take your time and allow yourself to enjoy the journey.
When it comes to work, your stress levels about an important project could reach new heights. Deep breaths! Panicking won’t help, regardless of whether you’re freaking out about a tight budget, an impending deadline, or both. Temper the urge to take your frustrations out on innocent team members and try to troubleshoot this one step at a time. Is this situation a symptom of a larger problem with your career in general? Maybe Venus retrograde in Leo is a good time to start thinking about your next professional chapter.
Leo (July 23-August 22)
Your personal image moves to the top of your mind starting on Saturday, as aesthetic Venus turns retrograde in Leo, disrupting your first house of identity and appearances until September 3. Press pause on any major makeovers, whether you’re overhauling your wardrobe or redesigning a website. This retrograde cycle could put a snag in your best laid plans.
On the romance front, amorous Venus’ backspin could put you on an emotional rollercoaster. Because retrograde cycles rule the past, don’t be surprised if a former flame comes out of the woodwork in an attempt to reignite that spark. Even if they insist that their intentions are platonic, you could still be heading into dangerous territory. If you think you might be tempted to dive back into a toxic dynamic, steer clear.
Virgo (August 23-September 22)
You could find yourself looking in the rearview mirror more than usual starting on Saturday, July 22, as tender Venus turns retrograde in Leo and your twelfth house of healing and restoration until September 3. Has a past hurt been crying for attention recently? Perhaps you’ve fallen out with a friend or gone through an intense breakup with someone you thought would be your “person.”
Don’t just brush these difficult feelings under the rug. The only way to move on is to honor your emotional state and process lingering pain. You may consider reaching out to someone from your past in order to fully find closure. While that could be tough, it will be well worth the relief you feel afterward. If you take the time to deal with this now, your spirit will feel a lot lighter by the time Venus goes direct in Leo in early September.
Libra (September 23-October 22)
Your sense of nostalgia could overwhelm you starting on Saturday, July 22, as imaginative Venus turns retrograde until September 3. For the next six weeks, the amorous planet retraces its steps through Leo and your collaboration zone, bringing friends and colleagues back from the past. Reconnecting could be joyful—and that’s a good thing, since this retrograde could stir tension in your current social circles.
Single? Don’t burn yourself out chatting with every person your dating app suggests as a match. During Venus retrograde, add an extra layer of discernment. Already attached? While it’s good to shake up your typical routines to keep things exciting, you could destabilize your relationship by going a little too far out there.
Scorpio (October 23-November 21)
Beware: Things could hit a snag with this partner starting on Saturday, July 22, as Venus turns retrograde in Leo (your zone of career and long-term game plans) until September 3. Is everyone on the same page about your big-picture goals? Have a candid conversation about where you see this venture heading. If you aren’t on the same page, find a way to get there if possible. A few compromises could be all it takes to get back on track. During this hectic Venus retrograde in Leo cycle, make sure you carve out plenty of time for self-care. Since retrograde cycles rule the past, don’t be surprised if an influential colleague or former client resurfaces with an enticing opportunity.
Sagittarius (November 22-December 21)
Things could get unnecessarily complicated on the romantic front starting this Saturday, July 22—or maybe they were already heading off the rails, but you just weren’t paying attention. Either way, come in for a landing in the reality zone, as amorous Venus turns retrograde, back-spinning through Leo and your expansive ninth house until September 3. This is not the time to make any impulsive or risky moves when it comes to your love life. Venus retrograde can shine a light on serious problems you may be repressing, so tackle this head on. And if this matter involves an oh-so-bad-for-you ex, nip things in the bud before you do something you regret.
Capricorn (December 22-January 19)
Buckle up for an extended ride on the emotional rollercoaster starting on Saturday, July 22, as Venus turns retrograde in Leo and your eighth house of merged energies until September 3. Since retrogrades rule the past, don’t be surprised if a former flame resurfaces to stir up old drama. You could be susceptible to irrational flights of jealousy, but try not to let the green-eyed monster get the best of you!
Are past trust issues resurfacing? Do your own processing, and when you feel clearer, have a candid conversation with the other person about how their behavior is triggering certain difficult feelings within you. With a little work, you’ll be able to navigate through this rough patch. Bonus: All this healthy communication will actually strengthen your relationship.
Aquarius (January 20-February 18)
On Saturday, July 22, love-planet Venus turns retrograde, back-spinning through Leo and your partnership sector until September 3. In the coming weeks, certain issues around commitment could hit a speed bump in a close relationship. It’s possible that a problem from your past—which you thought everyone had moved beyond—could rear its ugly head again. Don’t let this surprise conflict throw you off your game.
Venus retrograde could shine a spotlight on an area of your relationship that needs some additional work. Take steps to resolve these troubling patterns and remember that all relationships go through rocky patches. What matters is how you deal with them.
Pisces (February 19-March 20)
Go with the romantic flow? Good luck with that, Pisces. Your rarely seen controlling impulses could be ratcheted up starting on Saturday, July 22, as congenial Venus turns retrograde in Leo and your micromanaging sixth house until September 3. Anxieties could become more pronounced during this transit, causing feelings of envy and inadequacy to bubble to the surface. Instead of spiraling out over everyone else’s “perfect” life, banish negative self-talk and surround yourself with people who lift you up. Even though the summer will offer plenty of treats, careful not to drown your feelings in sugary foods or alcohol.
Throw away your relationship script…it’s time to write a new one!
It’s back! Our wildly popular Venus retrograde workshop Romance Reset will transform your approach to love and relationships. Sign up now and get our 50% off early-bird price! Virtual/on-demand course begins July 23, 2023.
Whether you’re single, in a relationship or somewhere in between, Romance Reset will guide you through Venus retrograde—leaving you transformed and empowered!
Want even more? Do you have a Venus retrograde in your birth chart?
Use our free Cosmic Calculator below to find where Venus is in your chart and if you were born during a Venus retrograde. Then head here to learn what your Venus sign means!