All About the Scorpio Zodiac Sign: Dates, Personality Traits, and Compatibilities of the Magnetic Sign

Photo: Getty Images/ Tim Robberts
Scorpios, whose birthdays fall between October 21 and November 23, have their proximity to Halloween—among other things—to thank for their esoteric, mysterious, and alluring aura. But the more you pry open Scorpio personality traits, the more you’ll find these natural empaths aren’t as tough as they seem (please don’t kill me).

ICYDK, Scorpio’s symbol is a scorpion, guarded and prepared to draw blood if necessary. It makes sense why they have an insatiable demand for power and control. Plus, they’re pros at creating physical boundaries. If you’re still not convinced, think about the famous Scorpios, like Frank Ocean, whose social media posts are historically cryptic as hell, or Emma Stone, whose social media presence is entirely nonexistent. So, what are these mystifying critters hiding?

Experts In This Article

For starters, Scorpio is a water sign, so their top priority is to preserve their emotions, but I reckon being one of the fixed signs, which tend to be fixed in their ways, has much to do with the sign being an enigma. If you’re lucky enough to know a Scorpio on a deeper level, though, they can take you to secret worlds full of magic and the supernatural. “They’re your biggest hype man, deeply interested in your life, and support you as you transform and change as a person,” astrologer and tarot reader Makayla McRae explains.

These passionate signs are hard to read, and that’s intentional, so how can anyone really grasp Scorpio personality traits? Below, astrologers break down key Scorpio personality traits, down to their strengths, weaknesses, and everything in between.

Scorpio Dates

Each year, Scorpio season dates fall approximately between October 23 and November 21, when the sun moves through Scorpio. Note these dates can shift slightly due to Earth’s wobble in its rotational axis (called precession). Scorpio is a fixed sign, which refers to the zodiac signs that fall squarely in the middle of a season; in the case of Scorpio, that season is fall.

If your birthday falls within these dates, that means you have a Scorpio sun. In that case, you probably identify with the water sign’s uncanny intuition and affinity for all things mystical, among other traits discussed below. But having a Scorpio sun doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to relate to all of Scoprio’s traits. For starters, your sun sign only gives a snapshot of your personality traits and motivations—and doesn’t speak to your entire astrological profile.

On the other hand, if you don’t have a Scorpio sun and you feel like you connect with the below, it might be because you have a Scorpio moon or rising sign (meaning, Scorpio is playing a strong role in other parts of your birth chart). Plug your birth time, date, and location into a free astrology birth chart generator like this one to get that information.

Maybe you aren’t a Scorpio and want to get a deeper understanding of the intuitive water signs in your life. Whatever the case, knowing what makes these elusive water signs tick is a must. Read on to learn more about Scorpio’s personality traits, including their strengths, weaknesses, and preferences.

Scorpio Personality Traits

Passionate, smart, and independent, the myriad of Scorpio traits make for one of the most multifaceted signs of the zodiac. You can blame it on Mars, the planet that rules Scorpio in traditional astrology. Associated with mental and physical drive, Scorpio’s ruling planet lends the sign their relentlessly driven spirit—and they’ll go to great lengths to reach their desired destinations.

Scorpios are also intense and equipped with a magnetism to the occult and supernatural realms, thanks to their modern-day planetary ruler Pluto, which is associated with death, rebirth, and the shadowy corners of the subconscious. The sign gets a reputation for being mysterious and scary, but it’s because of Pluto that Scorpios are great at keeping secrets.

Being one of the fixed signs, Scorpios are unwavering in their loyalty, whether that be in terms of their careers or people they care about—sometimes to a fault. “They will go to the edge of the world for those they value,” intuitive astrologer and transformation life coach Lumi Pelinku explains. On the other hand, their extreme sense of faithfulness often leads them to push their own feelings aside to keep others happy. (The reciprocation of that loyalty may fall short, too, creating heartache and bitterness.)

Here’s a summary of hallmark Scorpio personality traits:

  • Deep
  • Sensual
  • Mysterious
  • Emotionally aware
  • Vindictive
  • Intuitive
  • Moody

What are Scorpio strengths?

Because a Scorpio never lacks depth, they’re seriously in touch with their own emotions and those of others (water is the element of Scorpio, after all). Their emotional sensitivity can unlock understanding, making them naturally empathetic. Scorpio’s special relationship with all things unseen, like hidden desires and the supernatural world, is part of what makes them magnetic. This intuitive feature can be unsettling for those who can’t handle it (sometimes, in practice, it can feel like straight-up mind reading).

Scorpios are thought leaders who don’t really give a damn if you follow them or not. Pablo Picasso was a Scorpio. You know Pablo Picasso, right? The guy who saw the art of his era and was like, “Yeah, no… I’ll do a different thing and then people will follow my lead.” That’s real big Scorpio energy at work.

Basically, Scorpios aren’t married to the modes of the past, and that allows them to come up with fresh ideas and innovations. It doesn’t mean being at the helm of an artistic revolution for every person, but there’s certainly a good chance it’ll allow for some kind of personal autonomy over the understanding of what you earnestly like and prefer.

What are Scorpio weaknesses?

As much as they want to believe they can work well under pressure, Scorpio is a fixed sign, meaning they can get flustered when faced with abrupt changes. Often though, life doesn’t go quite as planned, which brings Scorpio’s control issues to the forefront as they will be resistant to changing course.

Scorpio’s intensity can quickly turn volatile, especially when their feelings are involved. As a water sign, they rely on their emotional awareness and intuition, which can keep them from seeing a situation logically. Their emotions may get erratic, Pelinku adds, affecting those around them.

Much like the Scorpio symbol, the stinging scorpion, the zodiac sign keeps their stinger front and center—and they won’t think twice about using it if they feel wronged. People of this sign are known to have a dramatic flair for vengeance, so you’d be wise to try not to irritate them.

Like their ruler Pluto, which can be unreliable as it prompts constant transformation, Scorpios can be just as impulsive, especially when emotions are involved. Scorpio’s intensity also spills into the way they make decisions in their lives—as if their decisions are always finite, and there’s no turning back, Pelinku says. Once they’ve weighed the pros and cons and decided what’s right in their hearts, Pelinku adds, there’s little room for negotiation.

Scorpio Likes and Dislikes

What makes a Scorpio happy?

Vulnerability can be terrifying for Scorpios, so they’re grateful for situations where they feel secure. Respecting their boundaries allows them the space to warm up to you at their own time and in their own way, says Emily Newman, astrologer and psychic reader. Since trust is paramount to the sign, keep your interactions with them as authentic and real as possible—and, in any case, avoid mind games and manipulation. “They have a strong intuition and can detect insincerity,” says Newman.

Given their water element, Scorpios are known for their keen intuition and profound sensitivity to the energy of others, Newman says. That said, being in a space where they can embrace their spiritual proclivities by way of energy healing or shadow work won’t just bring them happiness, but will also allow them to be in tune with their borderline psychic nature, too.

What annoys a Scorpio?

Scorpios tend to be cynical of people’s intentions, and there’s a reason for that. “Nothing drives this sign madder than trying to play guessing games when it comes to others' motives,” says McRae. And don’t even think of double-crossing a Scorpio—they can hold grudges forever if their trust in someone is lost.

Because of their reservations and trust issues, it annoys Scorpios when their boundaries are crossed. They prefer their space and will go full-on defense mode when they feel their safe space is threatened. Keep in mind that Scorpios can be stubborn—and if you hit a standstill with the sign, avoid participating in power battles, lest they dig their heels in even further.

Scorpio Compatibility With Other Zodiac Signs

Astrological compatibility is much more layered than peeking at someone’s sun sign alone. Your natal chart has a ton of elements that discern whether you’ll get along with someone.

For the same reason, just because you’re astrologically compatible with a sign, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s destiny, and vice versa: You’re not doomed if your partner or BFF is a sign that is said to be incompatible with yours. Each of you has a variety of different planetary alignments and house placements in your birth chart that tell the bigger picture.

All of that said, your sun sign is the hub of your central motivations and personality traits. In turn, you can get at least a top-level idea of Scorpio compatibility from comparing sun signs. Read on to learn which of the zodiac signs Scorpios are most and least compatible with.

Which zodiac signs are Scorpio most compatible with?

Scorpio has a great capacity for emotional depth, and fellow water signs Cancer and Pisces can understand and relate to the scorpion on this level. Cancer can offer Scorpio the care they yearn for in a relationship (and vice versa), and they both value loyalty. Pisces and Scorpio are both in tune with their emotions, so they will understand each other’s ups and downs, and both seek deep emotional connections with others.

Scorpio can also get along well with Earth signs Virgo and Capricorn. Virgo is detail-oriented and focused like Scorpio, and if they work together, they can make a productive pair. It might take a practical Capricorn to commit to a relationship, but once they take the leap, they’re usually in it for the long haul. Capricorn values loyalty, which resonates with Scorpio, who requires security to feel safe and secure in a relationship.

Although Taurus and Scorpio are opposite zodiac signs, they can find common ground in their shared sensuality, so long as they learn how to set aside their inherent stubbornness and learn how to compromise.

Which zodiac signs are Scorpios least compatible with?

Typically, Scorpio will have trouble getting along with fire signs Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. Water and fire and naturally opposing elements, and while there is potential for steam, the combined intensity can lead to power struggles in the long run.

Scorpio might also struggle to understand and relate to the air signs Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius. Although Scorpio doesn’t like to show it, they are sensitive with a proclivity of emotional ups and downs, which might be off-putting to the air signs, who would rather set aside emotion for reason.

Scorpio in Love, Relationships, and Sex

It takes a lot for a Scorpio to open up romantically, but when they feel safe enough to fall, they’re all in for love’s sake. Being in a romantic relationship with a Scorpio is, to put it lightly, intense. They’re governed by Pluto, the planet of death and transformation, so for Scorpio, love can be a whirlwind experience.

Other words to describe it, according to Pelinku include all-encompassing, cathartic, and overprotective. “As Scorpios start to fall in love, they feel intensely and will fixate all of their attention on their lover,” Pelinku says. With that in mind, Pelinku says Scorpio’s perfect match must have a strong sense of self and personal boundaries “when treading the waters of Scorpio’s ecosystem.”

During sex is when you’ll often see a Scorpio’s true colors, which checks out since Scorpio is ruled by the eighth house of astrology, which is typically associated with sex. “Their emotions run wild in the bedroom, and this is where Scorpios truly feels most expressive,” Pelinku says. “They can go from sensual to passionate and primal. They like to dominate but wish nothing more than to please their lovers.”

Scorpio in Work and Career

Scorpios crave power and control, and the same goes for their work. They either dominate within their space or are looking to seize the whole office. That said, Scorpios make strong leaders and work well in environments that allow them to express their passions on projects or campaigns.

What are the best careers for Scorpios?

Career-wise, a Scorpio may not be the official HBIC, but there’s a good chance they have power within a creative division or hold a highly specialized title. That can be in roles like editor or art director, where they can climb the ranks or have some authority over the landscape of their business.

Because of their affinity for all things taboo, unconventional careers (or ones that some of us might deem uncomfortable), such as grief or sex counseling, and financial advising can work best for Scorpios. On the supernatural side of the spectrum, Scorpios can also thrive in careers dealing with mysticism (e.g. astrologers or paranormal tour guides).

What are the worst careers for Scorpios

While their intuition and respect for emotional awareness make them good at getting others to open up, it can be difficult for Scorpios to be in a professional position where they’re the ones needing to be vulnerable. Writing, politics, or any other career that requires emotional openness on their end will likely be difficult for Scorpios to hold down.

Plus, Scorpios are highly intuitive and abstract thinkers, so jobs in finance, engineering, or other analytical fields likely wouldn’t vibe with their personality.

Scorpio in Friendships

Trust doesn’t come easy for Scorpio, and it can take time for the reserved water sign to warm up in a friendship that hasn’t been tested yet. “Scorpios need trust in relationships. They have a deep intuitive understanding of the world around them, so honesty is also essential,” McRae explains. If they don’t get the truth out of you, they’ll rely on your energy and their intuition to assess their friendships.

Based on having their guard up at all times, Scorpios may appear to be prone to self-sabotage or vindictive friends. On the contrary, a Scorpio friend can be a friend for life as they are deeply devoted to those they care about. “They likely have a close-knit circle of friends in which they entrust their deepest secrets,” Pelinku says.

Plus, being a fixed water sign, Scorpios are extremely loyal people. “If a friend is ever in trouble, Scorpio will drop everything to ensure their near and dear are taken care of, and expect nothing in return,” Pelinku says. Safe to say, everyone needs a Scorpio BFF.

Scorpio in Family Dynamics 

Water signs are naturally drawn to their safe spaces, so Scorpio’s home life must be built on trust. In other words, they tend to see their closest family members as keepers of their secrets and wounds—and return the security. “Scorpio family members are fierce protectors,” says McRae. “They'll go to war for their loved ones with unwavering support and loyalty.”

Unwavering loyalty isn’t the only thing Scorpios bring to the table when it comes to family dynamics. They’re empathetic leaders, so they’ll take account of their family member’s complex feelings and protect them, too. But Scorpios’ need for control may cause rifts, too.

“Their strong opinions and bold personality at times can cause relationship clashes,” adds McRae. That said, it’s important for there to be balance and boundaries to be established with their family members.

Advice for Scorpio

Scorpios may struggle with trust and vulnerability. It can feel like the Earth’s collapsing in on itself once Scorpio feels remotely disrespected or betrayed, and they can hold onto that hurt forever. “In general, it's important for Scorpio to maintain their determined spirit while incorporating detachment, open-mindedness, and an optimistic attitude,” says McRae. Sometimes the motives and decisions of others aren’t personal, so Scorpio will have to give people the benefit of the doubt.

Scorpios also struggle with control—or lack thereof. “This sign sometimes tries to solve problems that aren't even there. When you dig too deep, too soon, it can cause chaos,” says McRae. “Accept what you cannot change, change what you cannot accept is a classic bit of advice for Scorpions.”

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