top of page

Venus Retrograde in Leo

23 July – 4 September 2023

a woman's eye looking through abstract light

Every 18 months Venus, the planet of love, beauty, abundance, self-worth, values and relationships turns retrograde.

The retrograde period lasts for 40 days and 40 nights, and this time around the host sign is Leo.

Dates for Venus retrograde in Leo

20 June: enters pre-retrograde shadow

23 July: Retrograde begins at 28 LEO

8 August: Venus disappears from view as evening star at 23 LEO

17 August: Venus returns to view as morning star at 18 LEO

4 September: Retrograde ends at 12 LEO

7 October: leaves post-retrograde shadow

About Venus

Venus is the ruler of two signs: Taurus and Libra. The Taurus connection is linked to us finding the things that provide pleasure, satisfaction and a sense of self-value. In Libra, the focus is on the process of learning how to choose, balance, harmony and connection with others.

Venus is very secure in who she is and what she has to offer. She gives joyfully to others but does not depend on them for her sense of self-worth. When she gives, it’s because she wants to, not out of a sense of obligation or in trying to get something in return.

Venus is commonly linked to relationships, but she is more than that.

Attraction and receiving

Venus represents how we attract the things that we love, value and desire. Through her, we determine what we appreciate and then draw it into our lives.

Self worth and money

Venus also relates to our own self-worth. When we value ourselves, our talents and abilities, we feel worthy of attracting money, relationships, jobs, opportunities.


Venus rules how we give and receive love, the pleasure we get from being in a relationship and the receptive side of sexuality.

Beauty and the arts

Venus also rules beauty, specifically the things that we find beautiful and our personal style. How we dress and the way we decorate our home is all Venus work.

The movement of Venus through the sky is beautiful. Over an eight year cycle, she traces a path around the Sun that creates a near-perfect pentagram, or five-petaled flower—very fitting for the planet of love and beauty.

General bits about Venus retrograde

Like all retrogrades, it is a chance for all of the re- words: reflect, renew, reevaluate, reset etc. but in line with the themes of Venus: relationships, self-worth, money, beauty, attracting/receiving.

During a Venus retrograde, past romances can make their way into your thoughts for you to review what worked and what didn’t. Sometimes an ex will get back in touch. Relationships might suddenly end, or quickly go to the next level.

Venus begins the retrograde as an evening star (the bright star you see in the sky just before sundown). About two weeks after the retrograde begins she vanishes from view for approximately eight days and reemerges as a morning star (rising just before the sun).

As she comes to the end of her evening star cycle we too are bringing things to an end: toxic relationships, limiting beliefs, destructive and abusive behaviours. The period where she vanishes from view is like wiping the slate clean: we have a blank canvas on which to draw our new vision of our love lives. When Venus returns as a morning star, this is our opportunity to bring these new visions to life.

Venus retrograde in Leo

Leo is big-hearted, loving generous energy. It has passion and fire and likes to be centre-stage. Leo rules the fifth house, the place where we develop our personal expression. It becomes how we shine as an individual and allow our creativity to flourish and pour out of us. It is also the house of pleasure, dating and children.

When Venus retrogrades in Leo where and how we spend our creative energy is up for review. If life has become too staid and dry, this is your moment to find new ways of injecting fun and play.

Leo is the playfulness of new relationships, the initial jolt of meeting someone new, the butterflies in the stomach when you see their name in your notifications, the electric touch of a first kiss and just wanting to spend all day in bed absorbed with each other. It’s a love of love and the worship of it. We play in these initial stages of romance before things move into something more committed in Libra. And after awhile, we forget about them. The passion of romance gets forgotten as you deal with domestic pursuits and argue about whose turn it is to load the dishwasher. So when Venus retrogrades in Leo, we are reigniting the spark. We all need the spark. We all need to flirt and feel like we are worshipped by another. That is the other thing about Leo—they are the King or Queen of the jungle and must be treated as such.

A flower in the shape of a person. Text reads Venus Retrograde Group 23 July to 4 September. Rest, renew and come back to yourself

Leo is our personal expression and what we are creating and how. Creating is not necessarily an artistic pursuit (although that does count) but how we are creating the life we want for ourselves. Leo is ruled by the Sun, and the Sun represents how we shine. It might feel like our vital Sun energy is zapped somewhat during this retrograde period as we become more internally focused. This is perfectly normal so don’t beat yourself up about it. Instead, embrace putting your needs first. Taking time out to rest is natural so make it as pleasurable as possible for yourself. If you watch lions at the zoo you will see that they enjoy lying around, lazing in the sun to recharge.

Children are also associated with Leo—they are essentially something that comes naturally to us to create, and begin to form our legacy through the generations. Children have a buoyant energy about them, playing games and making up stories without thinking about if they’ve got it right or not. They wonder at the world and the things in it. They play, constantly. A retrograde through this sign reminds us of the value we put on play and enjoyment.

With Venus also ruling our sense of self-worth and how we attract what we want, this is a beneficial time to dive into any self-sabotage and fears that are holding you back from feeling like you are creating a life you want to live rather than going through the motions.

A relationship is about two people connecting with each other. I’ve said before how it’s the balance between the We and the Me. Venus is also asking you to explore how your relationship with yourself has changed—this is something that we all must do, so that when we connect with people whether they are friends, family, colleagues or a romantic partner, we meet them from a place where we know who we are and what we value and desire.

Do’s and don’ts of Venus retrograde

The main rule to remember while Venus is in retrograde is not to do any big makeovers or changes to your appearance. If you’ve been wanting to change your hairstyle, wait until Venus is direct (back before I knew better I changed my hairstyle during a Venus retrograde and couldn’t wait for it to grow out again). General haircuts where you are just getting a trim and maintaining your current cut and colour are fine. Also avoid permanent things like tattoos as it may not turn out the way you’d like it to.

Keep an eye on your spending habits. And you might find that issues in your relationships pop up for your attention. Have patience while you navigate these and remember that the other person is also under the same retrograde influence.

Where this retrograde will show up for you

Your personal experience of Venus retrograde in Leo will depend on where Leo is in your birth chart. The following outlines the areas of your life where you will be doing some extra reflecting. Join the Venus Retrograde Group to learn more.

Aries and Aries rising: This retrograde will be in your 5th house of pleasure, creativity and children.

Taurus and Taurus rising: This retrograde will be in your 4th house of home, family and foundations.

Gemini and Gemini rising: This retrograde will be in your 3rd house of communication, siblings and neighbourhood.

Cancer and Cancer rising: This retrograde will be in your 2nd house of money, personal resources and values.

Leo and Leo rising: This retrograde will be in your 1st house of self, identity and how you meet the world.

Virgo and Virgo rising: This retrograde will be in your 12th house of subconscious and spirituality.

Libra and Libra rising: This retrograde will be in your 11th house of community, organisations, groups and personal hopes and dreams.

Scorpio and Scorpio rising: This retrograde will be in your 10th house of career and social standing.

Sagittarius and Sagittarius rising: This retrograde will be in your 9th house of adventure, travel, education and belief systems.

Capricorn and Capricorn rising: This retrograde will be in your 8th house of shared resources, sex, intimacy and psychology.

Aquarius and Aquarius rising: This retrograde will be in your 7th house of relationships and partnerships.

Pisces and Pisces rising: This retrograde will be in your 6th house of health, habits and daily work.

Some things to ponder

  • Revisit the general themes of this Venus retrograde and journal about what this means for you. Are there any things that stand out to you that you need to focus on or complete?

  • Take a look at the house/area of life that Leo rules in your birth chart (check out the list above). What area of your life will this retrograde affect and what does this mean for you? how do you feel about this part of your life or your situation right now?

  • Bonus: If you know a bit about your birth chart and have planets or angles between 12 and 28 degrees of Leo, which ones are they and how will this add an extra dimension to your retrograde experience? (For example, if you have your Sun in Leo you may be thinking more about your identity in relationships, if you have Mars in Leo you could be reflecting on the balance of your masculine and feminine energy.) Join the Venus Retrograde Group to dive into this further.

  • Using all of the above information set your intention for this retrograde.

Post-retrograde reflection:

Once Venus has left her post-retrograde shadow, reflect on the past few months. What happened? What did you learn? How do you feel about your relationships, values, finances etc. now?

Join the Venus Retrograde Group for weekly calls during the retrograde period. Together we will work through the themes and what is coming up for us in a safe, supportive space. Learn more here.


Work with me

Book a Birth Chart reading to discover how the upcoming transits will play out for you personally.

The Complete Package uses a variety of tools including astrology, holistic counselling and EFT. Explore personal issues and concerns in a way that honours your unique way of thinking and being.


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page