The month starts on an expansive note. We're encouraged to open our minds on August 3, when the Moon waxes full in forward-thinking Aquarius and creates a square against change-loving Uranus at 11:58 a.m. EST. This is a day to absorb what is happening around us and focus on flexibility. Chatty Mercury speeds into the proud sign of Leo on August 4, altering how we share our thoughts. We’ll enjoy a new sense of confidence while the messenger planet moves through this sign, but we’ll have to be prepared to put a little extra effort into listening. Charming Venus makes her way into sensitive Cancer on August 7, helping us be gentler with our loved ones. We may notice that we’re more doting toward our partners, or that we’re feeling more open to new relationships. August 15 offers us an opportunity to manage our energy, as change-loving Uranus stations retrograde in reliable Taurus. We're feeling a little jittery as this planet moves in reverse, and find it more challenging to tether our ideas. It’ll take more intention to center our thoughts, but if we make the effort it’ll pay off when Uranus stations direct in Taurus. Ready to get organized? The Sun enters Virgo's practical sign on August 22, helping us figure out where loose ends can be tied up. We can use this transit to figure out how we can become more efficient and save time for what matters.
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Venus, the planet of love, social awareness, and money, is finally exiting its extended four-month stay in Gemini. Its next stop is emotional Cancer on August 7, where it will stay until September 5, says Narayana Montúfar, senior astrologer at Astrology.com. “During the time Venus was retrograde in intellectual Gemini, we experienced an overload of information regarding our society’s overall value system, as well as many of the injustices that have been taking place for way too long,” Montúfar reminds Refinery29. And she’s right — for the past few months, the U.S. has been reckoning with our history of racial oppression and injustice, police brutality, and disparities in healthcare made apparent by the coronavirus pandemic. Now it’s time for a change, as Venus enters the sign of the Crab.“As the goddess of love and pleasure enters Cancer, we will approach the subject of social justice from another perspective,” Montúfar says. “As Venus moves from air to water, we will be able to really feel the injustices we see around us at a much deeper level.” This may be painful, she warns, due to Cancer being one of the most emotional and sensitive signs. “However, from this emotional depth that only a water sign can provide, we are also able to pull the strength to keep on fighting for justice and equality, a theme that is highlighted by the astrology of 2020,” she says.While we have the power to harness our strengths and move forward in our fight for justice while Venus is in Cancer, there will also be a few setbacks we should be ready for.“During this time, we can expect to have emotional meltdowns and breakdowns, as the watery sign will bring on the tears amidst our emotional frustrations,” astrologer Lisa Stardust tells Refinery29. But that doesn’t mean you won’t achieve your goals now. “The good news is that we will be able to move on, as water signs like to go with the flow and embrace new creative ventures openly,” Stardust continues. “We will of course remember the past with an open heart and kindness.”There are a few dates to look at while Venus is in Cancer, too. On August 25, Venus and Jupiter, one of the most positive planets in astrology, will oppose each other — which Stardust says will expand our hearts and generosity. “Don’t expect to have a lot of drive on this day, which is the nature of the transit,” Leslie Hale, psychic astrologer at Keen.com, tells Refinery29. “It is generally considered positive but can in fact be indicative of laziness and sloppiness, and some things can become blown out of proportion or confused.”Another date to look out for, according to Stardust, is August 27. Our emotions will be heightened that day, when Neptune aspects Venus. Hale calls this, “a whimsical day indicative of fantasy, creativity and compassion on many different levels.”Finally, Venus and Pluto’s opposition on August 30 will bring along some power struggles — especially in money. “Look out for a story about the next stimulus check or loans at this time,” Stardust says. “This news will pop on September 2 when Saturn (the government) opposes Venus.”As the planetary ruler of Libra, Venus is the goddess of fairness and justice. Entering into resilient Cancer might be just what 2020 needs. “Like its animal symbol, Cancer has a soft interior, but also a very hard shell that ultimately is there to fiercely protect,” Montúfar says. When necessary, she says, this sign is not afraid to use its claws to protect its home and its people.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?How Uranus, Planet Of Rebels, Rules A GenerationI Used Tarot & Astrology To Catch My Ex CheatingShould You Get A Virtual Psychic Reading?
Summer is winding down, but we are still making the most of the warm weather with nature hikes, outdoor workouts, and healthy snacks. Check out the health and fitness products our Fitness editors are loving this month.
Having a designated home office requires space — which is exactly what our living setups don't have. But, before we nix the idea completely and continue to work from our beds, let's consider a craftier solution: the small-space desk — a furniture piece so clever and compact it will transform your WFH fantasies to realities. (Cue "Work From Home" by Fifth Harmony.) There are desks designed to wedge into empty corners, multipurpose desks that fold up when not in use, floating wall-mounted desks, desks made for standing, desks made for converting into dual-purpose dining tables...You get the picture. We hunted down a range of stylish and functional at-home workspaces built to fit inside an array of cramped nooks and crannies. Don’t let square footage restrict you from creating a home office, scroll on and discover the small-space-style desks that will secure you a setup fit for a boss. At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?PSA: Kelly Clarkson Just Launched A Home LineHow To Organize Your Pantry1 Useful Items That Will Help Your Food Stay Fresh
Despite the fact that we’re traveling much less this summer, it's still managed to feel like we’re walking more than ever. And, all of this bipedalism means that we are in dire need of some serious workhorse sandals to follow suit. No more strapping on those questionably supportive gladiators or flimsy flip-flops and Ubering our ways around town. Now that we're using our own two feet to hoof it to a host of local destinations, our footwear will need to support us (literally) every step of the way. We learned long ago that just because a shoe falls under the umbrella of “comfort” doesn’t mean it can’t be fashionable, too. With utility and style overlapping now more than ever, there are a plethora of choices this season that will enhance your walkabout without subtracting a single style point. Whether it's an unexpectedly cool cork slide, a recycled-rubber sandal adorned with dancing bears, or a leopard-print clog cousin, we’ve got you covered with summer-ready sandals that are both chic and sublimely comfy ahead. At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. All product details reflect the price and availability at the time of publication. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?Comfort Footwear Shoes That Are Actually CuteAll The Sales On Summer Sandals Happening NowBye Birkenstocks: Meet The New "Ugly" Sandal
Just a few short weeks after Demi Lovato announced her engagement to Max Ehrich, the star has more big news: She’s about to drop new music. According to Lovato’s most recent Instagram Story, the “Anyone” singer is working on a brand-new song — the title of which she announced via manicure, showing off a squared deep French shape studded with multi-colored butterfly nail art.“Guys, I’m writing a new song called butterfly rn,” Lovato captioned a closeup shot of her butterfly nail art shared to her Instagram Story. Following the low-key announcement, fans were quick to track down more details, only to discover that this isn’t the first time Lovato has used the winged insects to inspire song lyrics.“The first song @ddlovato wrote as a child was about butterflies,” one fan account posted. Lovato herself cosigned the report, reposting the fan account and adding, “And today I’m writing a new one about just one.” If you can’t recall a past Demi Lovato single about butterflies, that’s because it was written when the singer was just seven years old, and was never actually produced. In a 2013 TV interview on Katie Couric, Lovato revealed that the first song she ever wrote as a child was about a crush and that quintessential butterflies-in-your-stomach feeling — she even sang a few cords for the audience.As of now, all we know about the new track is that its subject is a single butterfly — and that Lovato is wearing symbolic nail art to match. We’re keeping a lookout for more breadcrumb clues ahead of the release. Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?The Mismatched Manicure Trend Just Got An UpgradeMeghan Markle's Bridal Mani-Pedi Broke TraditionCharli & Dixie D'Amelio Launch Nail Polish Collab
Vanessa Guillén, a Fort Hood soldier who originally went missing in April and whose body was finally found in July, still hasn’t gotten justice. Despite detailed reports, including a confession from her alleged killer, Spc. Aaron Robinson, Guillén’s family has lost faith in the system that was supposed to protest their daughter. “From the start, we lost trust with them (the Army) from the very beginning,” said Mayra Guillén, Vanessa’s mother. “The story they gave us is completely… I don’t even know what the right word for it is, but no one believes that story.” But as it turns out, Vanessa Guillén was only the latest fatality to come out of Fort Hood. Fort Hood has one of the highest rates of murder, sexual assault and harassment in the Army, according to Secretary Ryan McCarthy, who visited the base this week and said that the army base is known for having a violent past. United States Army post in Killeen, Texas has a troubling history of shooting rampages between 2009-2014. But as early as this past year, violence has continued across the base, with at least 7 soldiers who were stationed at Fort Hood having been found dead since March of 2020 alone. This includes Robinson, who took his own life after confessing to killing Guillén. Even in this past week, Francisco Gilberto Hernandezvargas, a 24-year-old soldier based at Fort Hood, was found after drowning near the Texas base. An investigation is still being conducted.In March, 20-year-old Shelby Tyler Jones’ died after suffering a gunshot wound in south Killeen near Fort Hood. Brandon Scott Rosecrans, a 27-year-old who joined the Army in 2018, was also found with a gunshot wound near Fort Hood in May, his car found burned nearby. Then, in June, another soldier, Gregory Scott Morales, was found dead in a field in Killeen, Texas, nearly 10 months after vanishing. Fort Hood released a statement that foul play is suspected. Morales was only 24 years old. Of the eight deaths this year, five so far have been publicly linked to foul play, according to the Army Times. When McCarthy visited this week, he said it’s clear that the Army should be taking better care of its soldiers. “We are getting an outside look to help us to get to those root causes and understand them so we can make those changes. We are going to put every resource and all of the energy we can in this entire institution behind fixing these problems,” McCarthy stated during a press conference. McCarthy also referenced Guillén’s death as a catalyst for the Army to focus on sexual harassment and assault in the military. Prior to her death, a survey given to 225 Fort Hood soldiers in June found that one-third of the women who responded had been sexually harassed. According to Guillén’s family, she had also shared allegations of sexual harassment with them prior to being murdered, but never reported out of fear. Fort Hood is now under a review, according to McCarthy, where officials will examine historical data of discrimination, harassment, and assault, and investigate the climate and culture that’s allowed for violence to take place. McCarthy himself has also already had conversations with soldiers based in Fort Hood to understand their experiences and the culture of the post, and conducted listening sessions to determine what the Army needs to change. With this kind of history, it’s unclear why this is just coming out now, and why serious action wasn’t taken as a preventable measure. Many cases of missing and killed soldiers had begun popping up long before Guillén, but they weren’t publicized or investigated in quite the same way. Still, McCarthy is determined to correct these injustices, despite a lack of faith in the current system — specifically the system governing Fort Hood.“Ultimately the results, findings, recommendations will fuel an implementation team chaired by the Undersecretary of the Army and the Vice Chief of Staff for the Army,” McCarthy said. Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?150 FBI Agents To Investigate Crystal Rogers CasePolice Continue To Be Accused Of Sexual ViolenceAaron Glee Confesses To Killing Toyin Salau