Sun, Moon & Rising Sign Meanings Explained

You are so much more than one sign.

Sun, Moon & Rising Sign Meanings Explained Tanya Antusenok / Shutterstock

Even those who are first to criticize astrology know their zodiac sign. You might not want to believe everything you read in a horoscope, but most people at least know what sign has been prescribed to us by our birth date.

But did you know that this sign is just your Sun sign? Or that you have a Moon and Rising sign to consider, too?

It’s a stretch to assume that everyone born within the same 30-day period has the same personality when everyone experiences the world differently. You might look at your horoscope and think, “That doesn’t really sound like me.”


That’s probably because you only have part of the picture.

Knowing your Sun, Moon and Rising sign gives you a much more nuanced picture that’s specific to you.

Sun, Moon and Rising Sign Meanings

For some, their Moon sign dominates, while for others, they resonate strongly with their Rising sign.

Astrology is based on an ancient practice that tracks the position of the Moon, stars, and planets throughout the year. Thanks to natal charts, we can uncover exactly where the Earth was within the universe at the precise moment of your birth.

This is how we know our Sun, Moon and Rising signs and what they mean for us. Keep reading to find out what each of your sign dictates and how it’s calculated.


RELATED: The Zodiac Symbols Of All Planets And Signs In Astrology Explained

What is my Sun sign?

What your Sun sign represents: Ego, identity, role in life

Your Sun sign is the sign you’ve probably known about since your birth, and is also known as your star sign or zodiac sign. When people ask you, “What’s your sign?” they’re generally referring to your Sun sign.


Your Sun sign refers to the position of the Sun at the time of your birth. For example, if you were born on November 10th, the Sun was situated in Scorpio, making your zodiac sign Scorpio.

Think of your Sun sign as your inner identity that you radiate to the world. It dictates our self-expression and how we experience life.

It isn't necessarily representative of our deepest emotional thoughts (leave that for your Moon sign!), but it does represent the inner part of ourselves that we feel comfortable sharing with others.

How to find your Sun sign: Because your Sun sign is determined by your birth date, it's very straight-forward. Just take your birth date and see what sign of the zodiac it's associated with.


Aries (March 21 – April 19)

Taurus (April 20 – May 20)

Gemini (May 21 – June 20)

Cancer (June 21 – July 22)

Leo (July 23 – August 22)

Virgo (August 23 – September 22)

Libra (September 23 – October 22)

Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)

Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)

Capricorn (December 22 – January 19)

Aquarius (January 20 – February 18)

Pisces (February 19 – March 20)

RELATED: What A 'Yod' On Your Birth Chart Means For Your Life & Relationships, According To Astrology

What is my Moon sign?

What your Moon sign represents: Feelings, emotions, mood

Moon signs require a little bit more precision, since Moon phases are much quicker than the Sun's.


Since your Moon sign is more unique to you, it reflects your innermost personal thoughts, emotions, and reactions that we often keep from others.

The light from your Moon sign is dim and casts shadows on the parts of yourself that you keep hidden from the world. It isn't uncommon to relate more to your Moon sign than your Sun and Rising signs, since this sign rules your relationship with yourself.

How to find your Moon sign: To calculate your Moon sign, you need to know the date and time of your birth, as well as the time zone you were born in. A Moon sign calculator is required for this.


RELATED: How Moon Sign Compatibility Affects Relationships

What is my Rising sign?

What your Rising sign represents: Outward personality, mask, personal style

Also known as your Ascendant sign, Rising signs are often neglected when we talk about signs, but they actually have a very important role in how we present ourselves to the world.

Your Rising sign is the version of yourself that you choose to put forward in social scenarios. If your Sun sign is your inner feelings expressed, and your Moon sign is your private thoughts, think of your Rising sign as the manifestation of your inner and outer world.

Because the Sun spends around 30 days in each sign, and the Moon spends roughly 2-and-a-half days in each sign, Rising signs denote which sign was on the horizon at the exact time of your birth. It's how you dawn on people.


How to find your Rising sign: Just like your Moon sign, specifics are important here. Your Rising sign changes every two hours, so you if you don't know the exact time of your birth you may need to consult your birth certificate before entering the information into a Rising sign calculator.

RELATED: What Your Midheaven Sign Means, According To Astrology

Alice Kelly is a senior news and entertainment editor for YourTango. Based out of Brooklyn, New York, her work covers all things social justice, pop culture, and human interest. Keep up with her on Twitter for more.