- Emily Newman, astrologer, psychic reader, and spiritual healer at The Best of Psychic Readers
- Rachel Lang, astrologer, psychic medium, and author of Modern Day Magic: 8 Simple Rules to Realize Your Power and Shape Your Life and As Above, So Below
- Tenae Stewart, astrologer and spiritual coach
Key Cancer traits
Cancer (June 20 to July 22) is the fourth sign of the zodiac. They are represented by the crab, an oceanic crustacean that’s known to have a hard-shell exterior. Much like its mascot, Cancer might come off as shy or closed off at first. Once they open up though, you’ll find that hidden beneath their protective shells are deeply emotional, sensitive, and intuitive individuals.
“They are often in tune with others’ feelings and vibes,” according to Rachel Lang, professional astrologer, psychic medium, and author of Modern Day Magic, in a previous interview with Well+Good. “Because of this, they tend to be the ones who take care of others, nurture relationships, and feel deeply committed to their family and friends.”
Indeed, it will take time and effort for Cancer to open up, but you might find that it’s well worth the wait—once a Cancer loves, they’re in it for the long term. Devoted as they are to loved ones, Cancer’s shadow side is that they can be selfless to the point of self-sacrifice. When they neglect themselves, they can become moody and withdrawn.
In addition, Cancer often becomes passive aggressive when hurt, which can make it hard to communicate efficiently and quickly with others who may not realize that they’re upset, too. As they are not one who easily lets go, they can also often hold onto negative past experiences. At their lowest, their sensitivity and grudge-holding attitude can be cumbersome for the health and maintenance of relationships long-term.
Cancer compatibility in relationships
The zodiac signs who are compatible with Cancer will tend to be more compassionate, patient, and understanding, and they’ll need to have more tolerance for petty disputes and more acknowledgment of Cancer’s extremities in sensitivity and feelings.
Typically, fellow water signs, Pisces and Scorpio, are inherently compatible with Cancer. They can reflect and understand Cancer’s emotional waves and allow space for Cancer’s heartfelt self-expression. Earth signs, such as Virgo and Taurus, can also make a worthy companion for Cancer. Their grounded practicality can counterbalance Cancer’s emotional sensitivity, and vice-versa. According to Lang in a previous interview with Well+Good, Capricorn is also an ideal match for Cancer, though they are opposite zodiac signs.
Ahead, learn more about which zodiac signs are the most (and least) compatible with Cancer.
Cancer and Aries compatibility
Aries is a fire sign, and they often have an intense physical chemistry with Cancer, but fail to connect emotionally and mentally in order for the signs to be compatible long-term. “Aries do not prefer too much emotional behavior like that of Cancer, and when both partners are faced with a challenge, Aries likes to battle and win, whilst Cancer prefers to hide,” says Newman.
What’s more, both have opposing views on life, which can make goal-setting and planning for the future difficult and unrealistic. “Cancer does not like Aries’s daring and overly rational behavior, and as a result, they are not an ideal fit,” says Newman.
Cancer and Taurus compatibility
Like Cancer, Taurus places high significance on relationships, as the zodiac sign is ruled by Venus, planet of love and affection. “They have similar traits in this realm: loyal, loving, wise, emotional, and homely,” says Newman, which they’ll show for each other when in a mutually loving and harmonious partnership. (Which comes more naturally for both when paired together!)
According to Newman, Cancer is an ambivert, and Taurus is an introvert, and together, they find it easier to root for each other’s successes as a team. There’s one red flag to watch out for, though. “Taurus’ possessive tendency can be a concern for Cancer,” says Newman. “Otherwise, both have great chemistry.” Good communication and trust can counteract this.
Cancer and Gemini compatibility
Gemini is an air sign, and as one of the most social signs of the zodiac, they crave more lightheartedness and less emotional intensity. “Geminis are chatty, intelligent, charismatic, and daring, and Cancer is stable and prefers to stay at home,” says Newman, with those born on the Gemini-Cancer cusp skewing on the more sensitive side. The different preferences in lifestyle and how to spend time, such as on weekends, can cause friction in their relationship.
“Gemini can appreciate Cancer’s honesty and reliability, but it cannot accept excessively sensitive behavior,” says Newman. “On the other hand, Gemini is temperamental and has a split personality, which confuses Cancer,” she says. Ultimately, though, Cancer may feel that Gemini ignores their feelings, whereas Gemini might find Cancer to be too boring and uninteresting as a partner.
Cancer and Cancer compatibility
Two Cancers will have a cozy partnership, says Tenae Stewart, astrologer, spiritual coach, and author of The Modern Witch’s Guide to Magickal Self-Care. They innately understand each other and want the same things in life. For instance, “they’ll want to stay in and build a home together and really connect in an intimate way,” Stewart says.
One tradeoff: When you have two Cancers who are constantly wading in their emotions, they can become waterlogged. “On the one hand, they can really see each other’s emotional sensitivity and depth, but then they’re always in that space of emotional processing instead of going out and living their lives,” she says.
Cancer and Leo compatibility
Both Cancer and Leo are loyal and devoted to their loved ones, but they differ in personality and priorities. Cancer is emotional and sensitive while Leo is passionate, but, at times, stubborn and set in their ways. What’s more, “Leos are sensible and enjoy trying new things, whereas Cancer is conventional in thinking and in matters of relationships,” Newman previously told Well+Good. (Those born on the Cancer-Leo cusp, though, might exude more uncertainty than pure lions.)
Regardless, their opposing personalities can make for a tumultuous relationship; Cancer might be too emotionally sensitive for Leo, whereas Leo might come across as self-indulgent to Cancer. However, if they learn to understand each other’s differences, they can build a relationship of mutual trust and respect.
Cancer and Virgo compatibility
Virgo is an earth sign that can make an ideal match for Cancer. Organized, detail-oriented, and particular, Virgo can help Cancer with practicalities, whereas sensitive Cancer can help Virgo tap into their emotions. Both are caring and sensitive, so they can nurture each other and effectively communicate their needs. If anything, Virgo can be a straight-shooter, and they might come off as insensitive to Cancer, who thinks more with their heart.
They can also make for a power couple, which is largely owed to their complementary astrological elements, water and earth. “Cancer may teach Virgo how to plan for the future,” Newman told Well+Good, and career-oriented Virgo can help bring this future into fruition. Regardless, “They’re both equally determined to make their big-picture ambitions a reality and to take charge and work hard until they succeed,” she says.
Cancer and Libra compatibility
Cancer and Libra both have a penchant for romance and want lasting relationships. They’re also both cardinal signs with reputations for being self-starters. While they share similarities that can make for a fulfilling partnership, they have different approaches to love that can cause challenges in their relationship. Libras require emotional distance to thrive, whereas Cancers seek deep connections and can be clingy with their partners.
Cancer can also be prone to mood swings, and Libras might not take well to their hasty emotional shifts. Newman told Well+Good: “Cancer is too sensitive and can not understand the good motive, like Libra does, and sometimes becomes too anxious and judgmental for Libra’s taste.”
Cancer and Scorpio compatibility
Cancer and Scorpio are two water signs, and Scorpio shares many of Cancer’s characteristics: They’re both loyal, truthful, and emotionally aware. “They are innately sensitive and both help each other to nurture,” says Newman. However, “Scorpio enjoys gossip, and Cancer dislikes it, which might lead to friction, although it is seldom a major issue,” says Newman.
Lastly, both are guarded and don’t open up and trust too easily, so they’ll need to let each other in first in order to love and trust one another. “Scorpio must first earn a place in Cancer’s heart, which might be challenging because Cancer does not trust easily,” says Newman. (And visa versa.) “However, once a bond is established, it lasts longer,” she says.
Cancer and Sagittarius compatibility
Sagittarius is a mutable air sign that is born to explore. This makes the zodiac sign a challenging partner for Cancer, a comfort-loving homebody. The archer’s desire to roam can rub Cancer the wrong way. “They dislike Sagittarius’s gregarious and adventurous character and instead value family most, and so they frequently expect their spouse to spend time with them,” Newman told Well+Good.
When Sagittarius is chasing their next adventure, Cancer may question Sagittarius’s sincerity and feelings for them, and on the other hand, Sagittarius may feel suffocated by Cancer. If they can openly communicate their needs, the crab and archer can work despite their differences.
Cancer and Capricorn compatibility
Capricorn and Cancer might seem an unlikely pair from the offset. Cancer is deeply sensitive, while Capricorn is logical—sometimes overly so—which can lead to miscommunication between them. However, both zodiac signs have the potential to balance out each other’s differences, and when they do, they can fulfill one other’s needs.
“Capricorns guarantee that their partner’s life is stable and secure, and Capricorn’s greatest soulmate is Cancer, who gives comfort and care to their relationship,” Newman told Well+Gold. “Together, these two signs form a lasting and harmonious partnership, and while there is potential for miscommunication, both signs are mature enough to deal with it in order to help make it work.”
Cancer and Aquarius compatibility
Aquarius is an air sign and appreciates freedom and socializing, whereas Cancer is more of a homebody. “Cancer prefers to spend time with a spouse over other individuals, and Cancer is more overly emotional, whereas Aquarius is more analytical in decision-making,” says Newman. So, there’s a difference in the signs’ natural way of thinking and feeling, where emotions are felt and choices are made in mismatched ways.
Aquarius might be impatient and unable to grasp and understand Cancer’s feelings, as well as handle them. Cancer might be too needy and attached for Aquarius’ liking and be more argumentative when upset without the ability to resolve matters faster. “Both tend to believe that their partners do not understand their emotions and do not give them adequate space to express them, which aggravates the relationship,” says Newman.
Cancer and Pisces compatibility
Pisces, like Cancer, is a water sign, and together they can have excellent communication and work as a natural match. “Pisces needs a partner who is grounded, protective, and spiritual, and Pisces and Cancer are both sensitive and are better understood when they are working together,” says Newman. Cancer can sometimes be a little too heated and argumentative for Pisces, but it’s manageable with the right energy and outlook.
“While Pisces is calm, peaceful, easygoing, and adaptable, Cancer is temperamental, emotional, and overly concerned,” says Newman. “However, they balance and complement each other's characteristics and have a strong bond.”
Frequently asked questions
Do Cancers attract each other?
Cancers naturally gravitate towards one another, as they’ll see eye-to-eye on prioritizing comfort, security, and stability. When they come together, it can result in cozy domestic bliss. The only drawback here is that there’s double the emotion in this pairing, so they could find themselves waterlogged if they don’t establish healthy boundaries.
Who are Cancers not compatible with?
Cancers aren’t usually compatible with signs that lack the compassion, patience, and understanding to deal with Cancer’s emotions and mood swings. While they can often create lasting partnerships with water and earth signs, Cancer might face relationship challenges with air and fire signs who may find the crab to be too sensitive.
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