Pluto return 2022: the US is in for a major shift thanks to the slowest-moving planet

'It's this huge death and rebirth,' astrologer Liz Simmons says of Pluto return, 2022's major transformative event

pluto planet on dark background; meant to symbolize pluto return 2022
(Image credit: Getty Images/Elen11)

Pluto return 2022 has been 248 years in the making, and it's finally about to reach the U.S.

Though quite far out in the solar system and slow-moving, Pluto has been building momentum and will certainly shake things up upon its arrival. As we're gearing up for a dreamy Pisces season and planning to soak up its fantasy elements, do note that Pluto might cause a shift in focus. 

"It's this huge death and rebirth—a huge transformation," says astrologer Liz Simmons. "It's kind of like that Saturn Return in that you're really pushing to grow up but it's 10 times that because there's this huge call to wake up, shake up and take something down and figure out how you can rebuild it better."

So now that the slow-poke planet (dwarf planet, technically speaking)  is reaching a peak in Capricorn, we'll tell you everything you need to know about one of the most anticipated astrology events 2022 has in store for us. 

When is Pluto return 2022?

Mark your calendars: February 20, 2022, is the Pluto return in the US, just as Pisces season gets underway. 

It also comes at a significant time in the year. You might've been wondering "What planet is in retrograde?" and the answer is none. Pluto will hit the scene when all of its peers are moving in a direct motion. 

What is Pluto return?

Pluto might have a few frightening aspects to it, at least in astrological terms where it is known as the great destroyer, but don't go into panic mode just yet. The return will likely inflict change on the hierarchy and institutions of our country because of its Capricorn placement—and that could be a good thing.

"As the USA experiences its Pluto return, we're likely to see huge shifts in our political structures, which will set the tone on how our country moves forward after the trauma of a pandemic, political upheaval and supply chain issues," says astrologer Renée Watt. "However, power struggles between opposing political forces are likely to intensify, as each party makes its grab for power. Just don't expect a huge shift to happen all at once."

Why is Pluto not a planet? 

Despite the big hype surrounding this far-away "planet," it's not even considered as such by astronomy professionals. 

According to the Library of Congress, Pluto (the great destroyer to astrologers) was downgraded to a dwarf planet, as the International Astronomical Union (IAU) said it did not fit the necessary criteria. 

In order to be considered a planet, celestial beings must check the following boxes: 

  • Must orbit the sun
  • Must have mass to achieve hydrostatic equilibrium 
  • Must clear neighboring region of other objects 

Pluto does all but the third and final point: clear its neighboring region of other objects. So  yes, in a sense this means society is making a big stink about the return of a "dwarf planet". Who would've thunk it! 

Things to take away from Pluto return 2022

Yes, the event sounds intense, and perhaps Pluto seems more daunting than any political party or figure we've come to follow closely in recent times. But in reality, this could be a welcomed shift. 

As a nation, we've certainly been through difficulties in terms of social injustice, political tension, healthcare issues, violence and so on. Honestly, just listing what we're likely to hear on the news seems overwhelming. Pluto could possibly bring the change our society needs—but like the slow-moving dwarf planet itself, it might take a while.

"It's supposed to be this radical breakdown of things that don't work or don't bring any value to the foundation that we have," Simmons says. "There are fear-mongering aspects, but the outcome can be so much greater, which is hopefully embracing a foundation that's way more advanced and way more modernized for what we're going through."

Although there is no telling what will unfold, Simmons recommends embracing this event with kindness and preparing yourself for whatever change is on the way. Perhaps its 200-plus-year wait has been symbolic and it will be worth the wait. Here's hoping!

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Danielle Valente
Digital News Writer

Need a TV show recommendation? Maybe a few decor tips? Danielle, a digital news writer at Future, has you covered. Her work appears throughout the company’s lifestyle brands, including My Imperfect Life, Real Homes, and woman&home. Mainly, her time is spent at My Imperfect Life, where she’s attuned to the latest entertainment trends and dating advice for Gen Z.

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids, where she got to experience the best of the city from the point of view of its littlest residents. Before that, she was a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, and amNewYork, to name a few. 

When Danielle’s not writing, you can find her testing out a new recipe, reading a book (suggestions always welcome), or rearranging the furniture in her apartment…again.