What planet is in retrograde? Our 2023 guide keeps tabs on the cosmos

Curious what planet is in retrograde? We have your cosmic calendar—and expert-backed tips—right here

What planet is in retrograde, planets on multicolored backgrounds meant to symbolize their retrogrades
(Image credit: ewg3D, Eugene Mymrin/Getty Images)

If you're keeping up with the cosmos, you've likely asked, "What planet is in retrograde? And how will it affect me?"

For those who turn to the stars for guidance, allow our experts to fill you in on each celestial body's movements. Similarly to the next full moon, the next new moon and each astrology season, we've mapped out an annual guide of the planets' plans. (No need to thank us—it's our astrology gift to you!)

Typically the word "retrograde" gets a bad rep—just ask Mercury—but we're attempting to flip the script on this negative narrative. 

"It's an opportunity to readjust the things that the particular planet rules and revise the way we're going after things," astrologer Narayana Montúfar (opens in new tab) says of retrogrades.

See? Not so bad, right?

Headshot of astrologer Narayana Montufar
Narayana Montúfar

Narayana Montúfar is an astrologer and an expert in the astrological studies of the Moon and the author of Moon Signs: Unlock Your Inner Luminary Power (opens in new tab). She was one of Medium.com’s Authority Magazine 2020’s Strong Female Leaders and one of Vogue’s 13 Astrologers to Follow in 2021.

But we'll be honest: the thought of zero retrogrades is definitely something we welcome. Now, we've stepped into that unusual time of the year when the planets are all cooperating and moving forward. It began with Mars direct, January 2023's welcomed astrology event, on January 12, which gave us back a sense of momentum and did away with that laziness we had been experiencing. 

"Every day will feel a little easier as we ramp back up," astrologer Desiree Roby Antila (opens in new tab) says of the transit. "Mars rules our physical energy, so we will all get a boost of momentum and will not feel as sluggish as we have been."

Then, Mercury went direct a few days later on January 19, and hallelujah!

"Less than a week ago Mars went direct, and now Mercury is also correcting its course at 8° Capricorn which will continue to motivate us into this New Year," Roby Antila adds. "Mars brought our physical energy back, but Mercury will bring us some much-needed clarity and focus that we have been lacking over the last three weeks."

Until April 21, when Mercury once again decides to cause its typical craze, there will be smooth sailing. Enjoy the lack of disruptions! Things will kick off with quite a promising February 2023 horoscope.

Astrologer Desiree Roby Antila headshot
Meet the expert: Desiree Roby Antila

Desiree Roby Antila, author of Sun Signs in Love (opens in new tab), specializes in sun signs and astrological relationships. She has been studying astrology for several decades and has written numerous articles on matchmaking, cosmic timing, forecasts, and more. Desiree also teaches astrology classes in her local community and has conducted hundreds of natal chart and synastry readings.

What planet is in retrograde?

Rather than fear retrogrades, how about we use them to our advantage? Have a look below at what's ahead for the solar system in the new year, particularly when the retrograde-free period comes to an end.

While you're in the midst of cosmic homework, do be sure to also take a peek at your 2023 horoscope. (Psst: we've also uncovered the luckiest zodiac sign of 2023 and the luckiest star sign in love in 2023!)

Venus Retrograde 2023

When: July 22 to September 3, 2023

When Venus retrograde gets underway, the planet of romance, love and pleasure makes it harder for us to connect with those around us. When Venus gears up to spin backward, be mindful of how you are communicating not just with your S.O., but all those around you. 

Mercury Retrograde 2022-2023

When: December 29, 2022-January 18, 2023
April 21 to May 14, 2023
August 23 to September 15, 2023
December 13, 2023 to January 1, 2024

The most notorious planet in the solar system took center stage: we ring in another trip around the sun with Mercury retrograde 2023. 

Like 2022, the new year will feature four helpings of Mercury retrograde instead of three. When the planet of communication decides to start its backward spin, we get nervous about breaking up during Mercury retrograde, getting stuck on the subway and submerging our wet iPhones in rice.

It feels like a mess, but astrologers assure us it's really not. In fact, 2023's helpings of Mercury aren't going to be so horrific at all. 

"These first three might be somewhat easier to go through since earth energy is stable, determined and rational," says astrologer Liz Simmons (opens in new tab). "So, it might be easier to work through the logistics of the craziness that Mercury retrograde could bring."

Things might get a little tricker by the end of the year, though. (But you can handle it!)

"Given that this last one switches from earthy Capricorn to fiery Sagittarius, it might be more jarring since the fiery Archer energy may spark anger, aggression, assertion, and poorly timed action," she adds. 

headshot of astrologer liz simmons
Meet the expert: Liz Simmons

Liz Simmons is a freelance writer, astrologer, and tarot reader based in Salem, MA. She views astrology and tarot as another tool in our arsenal to understand the cosmic interplay in our lives. Currently, Liz contributes astrological articles and horoscopes to StyleCaster, POPSUGAR and Astrology.com. She is also the resident astrologer at ASCEND Get Lifted. Check out Liz’s Instagram @the__crone (opens in new tab) and her website, the-crone.com. (opens in new tab) 

If you're still feeling iffy about the whole thing, have a laugh with our favorite Mercury retrograde memes and stock up on crystals for Mercury retrograde. (You can never have too much citrine, anyway.)

A post shared by nina kahn (@valleygirlmystic) (opens in new tab)

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Pluto Retrograde 2023

When: May 1 to October 10, 2023 

Pluto might be small, and oftentimes overlooked in the astronomy world, but it's fierce in terms of astrology. 

Considering it's the planet of regeneration, it does focus a lot on death and rebirth, but Pluto retrograde should not be feared: it should be a time in which people make changes personally or professionally that are sustainable towards their overall goals. 

"Pluto is a force that dives into the hidden caves of your soul. It's a powerful energy that wants you to face your fears and what you've been resisting," says astrologer Noush (opens in new tab). "There's something really beautiful and helpful about Pluto that makes it one of the planets that can really guide your soul towards the most beautiful evolution and truth."

Headshot of astrologer Noush
Meet the expert: Noush

An astrologer, creative and crystal enthusiast, Noush believes in the combination of energy healing and practical spirituality to bring meaning into our lives. You can learn more about your cosmic blueprint during an astrology reading with her or shop through an incredible collection of healing crystals @jooncrystals (opens in new tab)

Saturn Retrograde 2023

When: June 17 to November 4, 2023

Saturn retrograde wants you to live your best, most authentic life. However, there might be a few growing pains along the way, as it can be a difficult energy to work with, Noush tells us. 

"This is tough love to help you understand the foundation within yourself to speak up for what you want," she says. "What are the final things that I need to look back on so that I am living in my truth and authenticity?"

saturn retrograde 2022; pastel saturn on a light-colored sunset background

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Neptune Retrograde 2023

When: June 30 to December 6, 2023

Neptune retrograde is the reality check of the cosmos. During this time, you might find yourself wondering, "How come I didn't realize this before?" And Noush makes the claim that this event is actually one to look forward to. (Imagine that!)

"We may need to question certain practices and processes in order to truly align with what really connects to our intuition," Noush says. "Allowing reality to reveal itself can help you move into alignment with love, creativity and spirituality."

Jupiter Retrograde 2023

When: September 4 to December 30, 2023

Jupiter retrograde is actually pretty beneficial—and benevolent according to Montúfar. It's a wonderful time to reassess our goals and plans. After a restful summer, things will be kicked into high gear during the fall.

"Profound inner growth is possible when we take a step back to consider the journey and experiences thus far during Jupiter retrograde," Simmons adds.

When Jupiter went direct in Pisces on November 23, 2022, it was a great push towards creativity and passion projects—plus it was a wonderful way to combat the sluggishness of Mars retrograde.

Uranus Retrograde 2023

When: August 28, 2023, to January 26, 2024

Consider Uranus retrograde to be a dose of clarity...but that doesn't necessarily mean it's a seamless energy to work with. 

"Uranus is trying to create a bigger vision for you, but it’s not a comfortable journey to get there," Noush admits. "You'll come back more empowered and feeling more comfortable with potential change and potential surprises moving forward because those are always going to be part of our lives."

Mars Retrograde 2022-2023

When: October 30, 2022, to January 12, 2023

Mercury gets the negativity, when in fact, astrologers really don't care for Mars retrograde.

"It's my least favorite," Montúfar reveals of the planet's retrograde. "Mars rules your drive and energy. You can't function at your best." 

Knowing that it has the tendency to make you feel lethargic, take note and make sure to enjoy your favorite self-care practices to feel rejuvenated. During this time, it's possible that sex might feel a bit awkward, so you'll want to take a cue from the experts about how to reset your sex life

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Asteroids in retrograde

Vesta Retrograde 2023

  • When: November 2, 2023

Though you might not feel Vesta's external forces à la Mercury retrograde, you can expect the asteroid to make its mark from within. 

"It's a very deeply felt energy," says Noush. "How can we connect deeper to that source or universal healing energy that can keep our flame going and nurture us internally when the outside world is chaotically doing its own thing?"

Chiron Retrograde 2023

  • When: July 22 to December 26, 2023

We'll be honest, Chiron retrograde can seem a little daunting. But just remember: all hardships will be rewarded, as you'll be placed on the proper path. 

"It can be a more painful period since we are encouraged to face the rawest, most vulnerable sides of ourselves," Simmons says. "Think about how you can take the lead with working through [your] issues."

Juno Retrograde 2023

  • When: TBA

Juno retrograde is all about partnerships, loyalty and how a relationship—romantic, or otherwise—should be balanced. 

"When Juno goes retrograde in Pisces it's kind of a really good time to—similar to Neptune going retrograde—it's a good idea to take those idealism goggles off," Noush suggests. "It's a good time to understand where you’ve become a little co-dependent or where you’re relinquishing your power."

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Danielle Valente

Danielle is a writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life, covering all-things news, lifestyle and entertainment. 

The heart of her time at Future has been devoted to My Imperfect Life, where she's been attuned to the cosmos, new TV shows and relationship trends.  

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids and a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, amNewYork and Newsday, among other outlets. 

When Danielle is not working, you can usually find her reading a book, coffee at hand, or attempting a new recipe. (Recommendations always welcome!)