Everything You Need To Know About Mars In Cancer In The Natal Chart

mars in cancer man mars in cancer woman

Mars is the planet of action; it rules our drive, our motivation, our methods of accomplishing tasks, and our attraction to others.

Because Mars rules action, he is considered to be in his “fall” or “depression” when Mars is in Cancer. I like to say that Mars is staying at his mom’s house when he’s in Cancer.

Like any other placement, there are both positive and negative qualities that come with this placement. Mars is certainly more reserved in Cancer, but this just means that the typical Martian qualities come out a bit sideways.

Sometimes, Cancer tempers Mars and Mars also tempers Cancer. At its best, this placement is quite serene and balanced.

Mars In Cancer Characteristics

Mars shows many different areas of the personality, but it most especially shows up in your drive, temper, career, relationships, and attraction.

Here are the ways that Mars in Cancer tends to manifest in an individual’s personality.


With Mars in Cancer, you move slowly. You gently test the waters and almost never dive into something headfirst. You have trouble with change and don’t like things to develop rapidly.

It can be difficult for you to try something new as you tend to be inhibited by insecurity. Your emotions motivate you to be driven; you’re not motivated by facts or logic.

When you feel threatened, you quite literally freeze and loose your drive altogether.

With Mars in Cancer, you may have a large drive for helping others (the homeless, in philanthropy, with your family, etc.) but struggle to find your own drive for yourself. Anyone would be lucky to have you on their side!

You’e always defensive of your soft interior, just like a crab. You’re more driven when you feel that you’re protected; when you’re feeling defensive, you retreat.


With Mars in Cancer, you don’t have an outward temper. You avoid confrontation when possible; you’re less than direct.

You do tend to hold onto anything that you see a slight. You build resentment against others over time because you never properly express it, but you eventually combust.

The typical Mars in Cancer person can be very passive aggressive. You might be defensive and alternate between behind-the-scenes manipulation tactics and dramatic emotion displays.

The Mars in Cancer individual has trouble appropriately expressing their emotions, but this is the goal if you want to regulate your outbursts. You probably have trouble venting in a healthy manner, so the emotions build up then flood out of you.

I find that those with Mars in Cancer struggle when they’re emotionally upset in other ways, too. Turbulent emotions mess with their willpower and drive and zap them in many areas of their lives. These folks first need to deal with their emotions and settle issues within themselves before they can be strong.

It can be easy for Mars in Cancer people to feel like the victim in almost every situation because it’s difficult for them to see things in an abstract manner. It is important that they let go of their feelings of victimization and of needing to be right.

If you have Mars in Cancer, know that suppressing negative feelings will not help you deal with them. More than any other placement, it is essential that you work through your feelings.


Those with Mars in Cancer can be extremely successful in many careers, but it is often the getting into the career that they struggle with.

If you have Mars in Cancer, it might be difficult for you to figure out what it is that makes you tick. You might feel a bit lost or struggle to find your innate talent.

There is probably something that you’re really good at, but the trick is finding it and pursuing it with gusto.

Those with Mars in Cancer are often great in domestic careers or at working with their hands. This will of course depend on your own chart, so this is not a hard rule.

Sometimes, these folks have the urge to put down roots in some way (kids, a home, a relationship, etc.) instead of developing a regular career.

Ideally, these people will find a workplace where they feel safe, surrounded by coworkers who feel like family. Alternatively, they usually work well from home.


With Mars in Cancer, you enjoy the chase but don’t make direct moves. You’re probably not a bold initiator.

Mars in Cancer women are attracted to sweet and sensitive guys who make them feel emotionally secure. Mars in Cancer men exude this sensitivity and are very gentle towards those they care for.

Above all, with Mars in Cancer you are attracted to emotional honesty. You need to feel emotionally safe and you pick up on emotional dishonesty very easily.


With Mars in Cancer, you feel very protective of those you care about, but you can also be overly self-protective and perceive anything as a slight towards you. This can make for some dramatic fights.

When you feel threatened, you might be moody or emotionally manipulative. Some Mars in Cancer folks cry at the drop of a hat.

When you’re committed, you’re also very protective of your partner and will go to any lengths to defend them.

If you don’t feel emotionally triggered, you can be very peaceful, protective, and loving in a relationship. You are sensuous and warm.

Sexually, the Mars in Cancer drive is tied up with emotional need. There is almost always a meeting of the bodies and the emotions; sex is very intuitive and emotional for these folks.

They’re very devoted and will touch their partners in a sentimental way to show them their love. Sex is almost never emotionless, even when they’re having “uncommitted” sex.

Those with Mars in Cancer might have trouble telling their partners what they need and expect it to be intuited. Their biggest turn-on is safety, both physical and emotional.

Mars In Cancer: Best & Worst Qualities

With any placement, there are positive and less-than-desirable qualities. Mars in Cancer is no exception.

If you have Mars in Cancer, you won’t see every one of these qualities in yourself. The qualities that are expressed will depend on the house, placement, aspects, etc.


  • Loyal To Family
  • Care For The Weak
  • Intuitive
  • Sensitive
  • Creative
  • Nurturing
  • Protective
  • Security-Focused
  • Maternal


  • Passive-Aggressive
  • Inhibited
  • Emotionally Manipulative
  • Moody
  • Defensive
  • Oversensitive
  • Clingy
  • Easily Offended

Mars In Cancer: Male vs. Female

This part can get a little confusing, so bear with me as I explain it. Basically, Mars shows itself differently for someone with more masculine energy than it does for someone with more feminine energy.

It’s up to you to choose with energy you identify with more. If you’re unsure, I recommend reading the description of each energy for Mars in Cancer (below) and choosing what resonates with you.

Generally, in a man (or someone with masculine energy), Mars will show how the person acts and what vibes they gives off towards others. When this person is flirting, they will assume many of the qualities of Mars in Cancer.

In a woman (or someone with feminine energy), Mars will show what kind of qualities they are attracted to. How this person will act depends on their Venus sign, but Mars dictates what types of energy they are drawn towards in a partner.

Keep in mind that these distinctions aren’t absolute. As a straight woman, I definitely show my Venus sign when I’m flirting, but sometimes my Mars will bleed through just a bit. I find these definitions to be about 80% accurate, but we’re always a unique combination of all of our signs.

The Mars In Cancer Man

The typical Mars in Cancer man will attract a partner by being emotionally sensitive; he will “feel out” the other person.

This guy wants his partner to feel safe with him and to share emotional intimacies. He can take a bit to warm up, because he wants to protect himself, but he has a lot to give.

The Mars in Cancer man can be a bit temperamental and is easily wounded. He needs a lot of emotional attention from a partner.

Sometimes, the man with Mars in Cancer will have conflict with his mom, especially once he starts dating someone. Other times, this guy tries to find a mother in a partner, needing to be babied and coddled. It’s very common for a Mars in Cancer man to date women who mother him.

At the end of the day, Mars in Cancer men are more compassionate and nurturing than typical guys. He will do well with a partner who wants a sensitive, caring, and emotional relationship.

The Mars In Cancer Woman

The Mars in Cancer woman wants a man who is nurturing and caring. She needs a deep emotional connection to feel comfortable in a relationship.

This woman may smother her partner a bit. She needs a lot of reassurance, even after she has been in a relationship for some time.

I find that sometimes, she will look for someone she can mother. This helps to create an initial attraction, although her partner may come to resent her over time.

Unlike other water signs, the Mars in Cancer woman is generally attracted to strong, large men, but they also find a bit of emotional moodiness intriguing. These women love the combination of strength and sentimentality.

This woman can have massive mood swings in a relationship. Sometimes, when she looses control of her emotions, she can create quite a bit of drama.

She can be inclined towards alcohol to control her mood swings. She may have trouble with both mania and depression. This is exacerbated if she chooses a moody partner.

She wants absolute commitment but isn’t always willing to give it, at least not until her partner gives it first. At her best, this woman is nurturing and caring without smothering her partner.

The biggest goal for the Mars in Cancer woman is to work on her own emotions and learn to both feel and control them.

How To Master The Mars In Cancer Energy

With Mars in Cancer, you need to work on processing your feelings in a healthy way. You may have the tendency to either suppress your feelings or dwell on them, but instead you need to deal with your feelings and move on.

Therapy can be healthy if you feel flooded with negative emotions. With Mars in Cancer, you need a framework to work through your feelings so that they don’t overwhelm you.

With positive work, you can increase your drive and manifest better, more balanced relationships.

The goal is to learn to confront others you’re in relationships with in healthy ways, instead of exploding or manipulating them. You can assert yourself and feel strong in an authentic manner with enough practice.

Famous People With Mars In Cancer

  • Lana Del Ray
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
  • Chris Brown
  • Zayn Malik
  • Robbin Williams
  • Audrey Hepburn
  • Ashton Kutcher
  • Pablo Picasso
  • Penélope Cruz
  • Halle Berry
  • Meghan Markle
  • Pink
  • Cardi B
  • Warren Buffett
  • Stephen King
  • William Shakespeare
  • John Mayer
  • Reese Witherspoon
  • Halsey
  • Nick Jonas
  • Dolly Parton
  • Al Capone
  • Karl Marx
  • G-Eazy
  • Josh Hutcherson
  • Rachel Bilson
  • Ed Westwick
  • Lucy Hale