Why Astrologers Say Your Moon Phase at Birth Sets the ‘Genre’ of Your Life Story

Photo: Getty Images / Maskot
When using astrology to study personality, astrologers often look to the moon for celestial intel. But surprisingly, it’s not necessarily your moon sign that they’re interested in. In addition to looking at which of the twelve astrological signs your moon falls in, astrologers may look at which of the 8 moon phases someone is born under to shed a ton of light about your innate qualities.

Someone born on a full moon, for example, will be open and expressive, while someone with a trailing-off waning crescent will value solitude. Astrologers even use your native moon phase as a way to discern lunar compatibility. All this to say, what phase the moon was in when you were born is crucial information to your cosmic personality.

I like to think of moon phases in astrology like movie and TV genres—they essentially help define what type of style your life is. For many people, it's a welcome breakthrough to realize they aren't living in the same "genre" as others around them. The friend who achieved early fame, the coworker who finds love easily—they’re living out a different script!

Before diving into what the moon phase you were born during says about your personality, a few basics.

How long will the full moon last?

You might feel the urgency to take action, let go, and finish projects (as you should) because a full moon lasts roughly three days. In total, the moon moves through all eight phases every 29.5 days.

What is the new moon phase?

New moons restart the lunar phase each month, during which the moon’s orbit crosses between the sun and Earth. Spiritually, it symbolizes a clean slate; an opportunity to recuperate and devise a plan for the next few weeks that’ll surface during the full moon. After all, you can’t bring things to completion without planting seeds first.

How to find what moon phase you were born under

There are eight moon phases, and yours is calculated by how many degrees, counter-clockwise, the moon is from the sun at the time of your birth. Some free birth chart tools will calculate it for you; Astro-Charts.com lists the moon phase under “Special Features.” To illustrate the tone of each of the eight phases and how they play out on life’s stage, we’ll cross-reference them to film genres (because who doesn’t want to be the star of the movie they’re writing with their life, each and every day?).

As mentioned before, the moon moves pretty swiftly. While your moon phase at birth defines your life's mood, you can always look into the night sky (or open your favorite astrology app) to mix things up and harness the current energy.

Here’s a breakdown of the eight moon phases, and how they set the tone for your life, plus, how to use the current moon phases to enrich the scenes in your day-to-day.

What the moon phases in astrology can reveal about your personality

New Moon (0-44 degrees from the sun)

The new moon is at its darkest phase; it’s in union with the sun, and all that will become is a blank slate. A person born under a new moon is living the fantasy genre. Whatever is in your imagination is in your power to make. It may seem “silly” or unrealistic to everyone else, but it’s really too early to cast any judgments just yet. Reserve time and energy for visioning. Your role is to push the limits through your dreams.

Waxing Crescent (45-89 degrees from the sun)

Cue the steamy shower scene and the park bench meet-cute—those born under a waxing crescent are in a rom-com! This phase is full of youthfulness and naiveté. Intent is transformed into waddling first steps. If you fall, brush it off and get back up! Your soul is an unblemished diamond among the jaded. Follow your curiosity like an arrow—synchronicity is your sidekick.

First Quarter (90-134 degrees from the sun)

The astrological shorthand for the first quarter lunar phase is “crisis of action,” indicating a change or decision must be made. Those born under the first quarter moon are in a drama. Your family is the cast of Succession and your friend group is straight out of Euphoria. You’re always having to rise up against something or someone, but your tenacity is unmatched.

Waxing Gibbous (135-179 degrees from the sun)

The magic of the waxing gibbous moon phase is that it’s the final stage before the full moon, and thus is fully defined by what’s about to happen. The future is bright, shiny, and light as a feather. Someone born under a waxing gibbous is brimming with anticipation, refining their craft, and, cracking a good joke because you’re in a comedy. Let the giggles sweep you up, it’s all going to be okay.

Full Moon (180-224 degrees from the sun)

At the full moon, we’ve reached the climax of the story. For someone born under a full moon, that’s just a typical day. Each morning, you awaken to a new adventure. It’s always high tide. This overexposure would wear other people out, but you were born ready for an epic journey worthy of an action-adventure movie. Your desires are worth the fight.

Waning Gibbous (225-269 degrees from the sun)

The waning gibbous moon, also known as the disseminating moon, fits the archetype of the teacher or mentor. You’re stable enough in your worth to share your gifts and wisdom. Like a Western, or more broadly, a period piece, you’ve captured the essence of a particular time (or subject) and crystalized it. Your genius lies in your willingness to distribute your learnings for the good of all.

Third Quarter (270-314 degrees from the sun)

At first glance, the third quarter moon phase is a mirror image of the first quarter. This time, though, it’s a “crisis of consciousness.” Instead of action, a person born under the third quarter moon must brave internal pressures, to work out a change of heart. You are living in a psychological thriller. Life is less about what you produce, and more about what you let go, including your ability to forgive. The reality you see has many layers, and integrating complexity is your superpower.

Waning Crescent (315-359 degrees from the sun)

In this final moon phase, also called the balsamic moon, the moon’s slim crescent of reflected light is fading to black. Someone born under a waning crescent may have an overzealous interest in death or ghosts. It’s possible you take things more slowly than others. Your life is the mystery genre. Unsolved cases and intellectual impossibilities stimulate your curiosity. You’re drawn to things that are ending, because of what they promise: peace and regeneration. When you are able to withstand darkness, nothing can stop you.

How to work with the moon phases each month

While the phase in which you were born can play a powerful part in the movie of your life, you can still harness its energy each month to your advantage. The moon phases across different cultures and religions mark the start of celebrations and traditions. The Lunar New Year, for example, is honored in Chinese, Buddhist, and Jewish calendars, while the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah takes place on the first new moon in the fall.

By the same token, each lunar period can be a powerful juncture for spiritual practice, introspection, or to seize opportunities. Here’s how you can harness the power of each moon phase.

New Moon

New moons renew the lunar clock each month. It happens when the moon orbits between the Earth and the sun, appearing invisible to us from Earth’s vantage point. “Energetically, it is a time of new beginnings and fresh starts,” explains astrologer Danny Santos. “This is a great time to set a few intentions and visualize what you want to achieve, he says.

Use the new moon to supercharge your monthly intentions—from planning a new workout routine or meal plan to implementing new budgets. It’s also a time for rest, contemplation, and recalibrating your peace of mind. And not like you need an excuse for proper self-care, but rejuvenating baths, naps, and journaling are powerful ways to seize the new moon’s call for renewal.

Waxing Crescent Moon

Love is the name of the game during the waxing crescent moon, and you’re the hopeful ingenue! A good way to use the romantic energy to your advantage? “The energy during this phase of the lunar cycle is a boost of hope,” Santos says. “It’s time to embark on your goals and embrace your dreams.”

First Quarter Moon

Feeling incapacitated by decisions? The first quarter moon is a loving push to make a choice. It’s a moment for commitment and confidence in your ability to find resolution. “Whereas the waxing crescent moon made us feel energized by possibility, now is the time to overcome obstacles, reflect on your intentions, and tweak anything that needs to be tweaked,” Santos says, meaning this is a moment to revisit the plans you created during the new moon and make edits where necessary.

Waxing Gibbous Moon

As it arrives just before the emotionally turbulent full moon, think of the waxing gibbous moon as the calm before the storm. You constructed your blueprint and revised your plans—now this lunar moment is helping you seek support and guidance along the journey of fruition and abundance. “Now is the time to speak up about what needs to be done, where you need help, and what you want to change in your life,” says Santos.

Full Moon

The full moon is about taking action, surrendering control, and allowing the pieces to fall into place. “Use this bright energy to charge crystals, take a relaxing shower or bath (water will be supercharged during this time of the month!), and aim to see situations and relationships as they are,” says Santos. You hold the power and grit—let the universe take over the rest.

Waning Gibbous Moon

Phew, that was intense! The fervent energy of the full moon has passed and now it’s the time to return to your inner world—but not before you give thanks to la Luna for the moonshow. Santos says this is a period of revisiting your new moon intentions (edits included). “Waning gibbous energy is all about taking stock and expressing gratitude for where you have come so far,” says Santos.

You can engage in gratitude by writing a letter to the universe (or whatever source you feel aligned to) and document how it feels to step into your own power, explains Santos. Or, you could take a moment to gaze at the moon’s glow and appreciate the way it beams monthly opportunities to mold into your best self.

Last Quarter Moon

Next, the last quarter moon sets the mood for a period of mental and emotional maintenance. Santos explains this is a good time to face the things you’ve been putting off during this cycle and make alterations accordingly. “Maybe it’s time to accept that you don’t want to do this task and take it off your to-do list for good. And of course, it can also help to look around your closet and home for decluttering purposes,” says Santos. Proactive practices, adds Santos, include daily meditations and cutting ties with bad habits.

Waning Crescent Moon (also called a Balsamic Moon)

The waning crescent moon is all about preparation before the next new moon kicks new beginnings into motion. “It’s time to prioritize rest and stillness. Reflect on what worked this month,” says Santos. What has this lunar cycle taught you? Focus on the takeaway, make peace with what’s been severed, and allow the novelty of the next lunation to guide you to the next adventure.

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Tags: Astrology

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