What Is an Aquarius? The Dates, Personality Traits and Compatibilities of the Zodiac Sign

Aquarius season begins on Jan. 20 and ends on Feb. 18. Here's everything to know about the Air sign, according to an astrologer

<p>Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE</p> Aquarius

Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE


If you were born under Aquarius, the eleventh sign of the zodiac, you probably know your way around a big idea.

"People born under the sign of Aquarius are often innovative thinkers,” astrologist Alice Smith of Alice Smith Astrology tells PEOPLE. “Aquarians are willing to think outside of the box, and they’re not afraid of challenging the status quo.”

Though one may assume Aquarius is a water sign because of its name, that is incorrect; it’s actually an Air sign! It’s a common misconception, but as the final Air sign in the zodiac, Aquarius exhibits more intense Air sign traits. According to Smith, they care deeply about the big picture and are often humanitarians trying to make the world a better place.

Related: What Are Air Signs? Everything to Know About Gemini, Libra and Aquarius

Aquarius is also a fixed sign, or a sign that falls mid-season. Fixed signs essentially serve as a stabilizing force in the zodiac; they’re typically known as industrious, hard workers. Aquarius is preceded by the ambitious Capricorn and followed by sensitive, empathetic Pisces.

Below, learn more about the zodiac sign Aquarius, typical personality traits and celebrity Aquarians.

What are the Aquarius dates?

<p>Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE</p> Aquarius Constellation.

Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE

Aquarius Constellation.

Aquarius season is from Jan. 20 to Feb. 18.

What are the key personality traits of an Aquarius?

Aquarians are all about authenticity — being their realest, truest selves no matter what. This means they can be seen as anti-authoritarian, but their rebellion is more about protecting themselves and their individuality.

"They defy conventions not because of a need to be contrary, but, rather, a need to be true to themselves,” explains Smith. “Because of this resistance to status quo, they are also especially gifted at innovating new solutions to old problems, which makes them the most progressive and future-oriented out of all the zodiac signs.”

Aquarius is ruled by Uranus, the planet of technology, the future and surprises. Uranus is also the most unique planet, given how it spins on its side, so signs ruled by Uranus tend to be eccentric or individualistic, both in their thinking and their personal style.

Aquarians, like their fellow Air signs Gemini and Libra, are “rational and communicative,” shares Smith; Air signs tend to be sociable and thrive in a group setting. Unlike Geminis and Libras, however, Aquarians are known for their big-picture thinking, making them natural leaders who inspire others with their drive, dedication and innovation.

“They are attentive to the far-reaching consequences of actions and see the grand scope of any plan,” says Smith. “Geminis multitask information well, Librans are attentive to interpersonal communication, but it’s the Aquarians who have the top-down, broad view on a situation.”

Because Aquarians are so future-oriented and forward-thinking, they may be drawn to jobs in the tech industry or environmental and humanitarian spheres, says Smith. She adds that sometimes Aquarians are “so concerned with the big picture” that they may have trouble with empathy on a one-on-one level and come across as being cold.

Which zodiac signs are most compatible with Aquarius?

<p>Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE</p> Gemini, Libra, and Sagittarius.

Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE

Gemini, Libra, and Sagittarius.

Aquarius gets along well with its sister signs, Gemini and Libra, because they speak the same language. “They share the same rational, sociable qualities of air,” explains Smith. Aquarians also spark with Sagittarius and Aries because the fire signs “stimulate their intellectual curiosity.” Because Aquarians are such trailblazers, they’re naturally interested in and compatible with those who share the same rebellious nature.

Aquarians also like to connect on a deeper level; they’re not huge fans of small talk. “The way to an Aquarian’s heart is through their mind. They care about big-picture questions and respect people who are willing to tackle the difficult questions,” shares Smith. “And if someone is also courageous enough to have a dissenting opinion that’s not aligned with consensus? They’ll earn an Aquarian’s respect big time for speaking up!”

According to the astrologist, when an Aquarian wants to get to know you, they want to know the real you with all your quirks, not a surface-level friendship or romance.

Which zodiac signs are least compatible with Aquarius?

<p>Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE</p> Taurus, Leo, and Scorpio.

Chloe Jeong/PEOPLE

Taurus, Leo, and Scorpio.

Because Aquarius is a fixed sign, they may “clash” with their fellow fixed signs Taurus, Leo and Scorpio, says Smith. A friendship or romance between these signs may lead to some friendly debate or a total stalemate.

“Fixed signs are known for their stubbornness, so Aquarians would have to learn the art of compromise with those signs,” Smith shares.

Related: Scorpio Compatibility: How the Water Sign Pairs with Each Zodiac

Which celebrities are Aquarians?

<p>Geoff Robins / AFP / Getty ; Eric Charbonneau/Getty ; Marc Piasecki/WireImage</p> Harry Styles arrives for the premiere of My Policeman during the Toronto International Film Festival on September 11, 2022. ; Oprah Winfrey attends the Los Angeles Premiere of Warner Bros.' "The Color Purple" on December 06, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. ; Jennifer Aniston attends the "Murder Mystery 2" photocall on March 16, 2023 in Paris, France.

With such strong self-confidence and conviction, it’s no surprise that many of your favorite celebrities are Aquarians, including Harry Styles, Megan Thee Stallion, Alicia Keys and Jennifer Aniston.

In Smith’s opinion, one celebrity in particular personifies the major qualities of an Aquarius: Oprah Winfrey. Winfrey, who was born on Jan. 29, 1954, is beloved not only for her groundbreaking TV show and pioneering spirit, but her philanthropic work.

Smith also mentions former President Abraham Lincoln as a great example of the forward-thinking leadership of an Aquarius. “Abraham Lincoln and Oprah Winfrey are examples of people who embody the spirit of Aquarian the revolutionary,” says Smith. “They both exhibited far-reaching vision, strong humanitarian spirit and also the trademark Aquarian defiance of social convention.”

What should Aquarians be prepared for in 2024?

According to Smith, Pluto began its journey into Aquarius in 2023 and will re-enter the sign in 2024, so be prepared for a year of rebirth.

“Pluto is considered a powerful force in astrology and its effects are especially active when it enters and leaves signs,” she explains. “Pluto’s entering into Aquarius will spur revolutions in the name of humanitarianism and equity, as well as in the technology fields — especially surrounding the use of AI.”

Smith notes that for Aquarians, Pluto’s effects may be felt as a need to “transform themselves and their relationships to become something more radically authentic to who they actually are — as opposed to who they think they should be.”

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.