6 Types of Oracle Decks and How to Use Them In a Tarot Reading

Whether you’re a seasoned tarot reader or you’re just starting to perform your own tarot readings for yourself or friends, you can incorporate oracle cards into your tarot card practice. If you have been wondering about different types of oracle decks besides tarot and would like to know how to use them in a tarot reading, you’ve come to the right place.

Incorporating various oracle cards in a traditional tarot reading can provide additional insights, interest, and clarifications to cards that might be confusing to interpret. Below are six different types of oracle cards, how to use them in a tarot reading.

1. Spirit animal oracle decks

Spirit animal cards depict images, graphics, drawings, or representations of animals, along with a message that corresponds to that type of animal.

How to use spirit animal oracle cards

Spirit animal cards are great for past life readings, ancestry work, root work, or finding your life’s purpose. Try incorporating spirit animal cards into your readings when you are looking for a particular sign about a past life or when communicating with the dead.

Example: Colette Baron-Reid’s The Spirit Animal Oracle

2. Feminist / female empowerment oracle decks

Feminist oracles celebrate the beauty of being a woman or identifying as one. Feminist-friendly oracle decks often contain messages catered towards female empowerment.

How to use female empowerment oracle cards

If you identify as a female or you’re doing a reading for someone who identifies as a female, female empowerment oracle decks are a great addition. Add them to a tarot reading when the querent asks for career advice, love advice, or how to become more powerful.

Example: Alana Fairchild’s Sacred Rebels Oracle

3. Lenormand cards

If you’ve never heard of Lenormand, you have to add these to your tarot readings! Lenormand is different from tarot in that the cards have more direct meanings. For instance, in tarot, the Six of Pentacles could mean anything from generosity, a gift, charity, money, being valued, or equality. The symbols and images on the card itself can also give the reader insight into its meaning. But in Lenormand, the meanings aren’t derived from the symbology on the cards. For instance, The Bouquet card in Lenormand means “gift,” but if the Bouquet card is next to the Coffin card (death/endings), the combined meaning changes to something like “Gift Ends” (Gift + Death/Ending). Each Lenormand card has a clearer meaning than tarot and is influenced by cards above, below, to the left, or to the right of them.

How to use Lenormand cards

If you like the idea of having clearer readings that aren’t as open to interpretation or bias, give the Lenormand deck a try. I love using a simple 3 or six card spread to string together a one-sentence message when I’m looking for a direct meaning. This Lenormand Reader website is a great resource for getting started with Lenormand, including example spreads and techniques to use in your readings.

Example: Take a look at Pixie’s Astounding Lenormand Deck

4. Angel oracle cards

Angel cards usually include cards depicting angels that might sound familiar, like Michael, Raphael, Gabriel, Uriel, etc. The cards can either have the angel’s name on them with the meaning, or they can just have images of angels with direct messages like “Wait,” “If You Believe,” “No,” “It’s Too Soon to Know,” or “Ask For Help From Others.”

How to use angel cards

Use angel cards for past life readings, life purpose readings, or information about the querent’s life path.

Example: Angel Answers Oracle Cards: A 44-Card Deck and Guidebook

5. Crystal or gemstone oracle decks

Crystal or gemstone oracle decks depict gemstones with different vibrational energies. Each card includes a type of crystal and a message related to the energy of that crystal.

How to use crystal or gemstone oracle cards

Use these oracle decks when the querent is asking for clues from the universe. Since each crystal holds a specific vibrational frequency and certain healing properties, the card will tell a corresponding message.

Example: Crystal Spirits Oracle: A 58-Card Deck and Guidebook

6. Planetary or astrology oracle decks


Planetary, astrology, or intergalactic oracle cards can depict phases of the moon, common planets, stars, or light beings and their meanings. The art on each card could be literal or a bit more representational, depending on the deck you choose.

How to use planetary or astrology oracle decks

I like using astrology oracle decks for past life or love and relationship readings. For instance, if the querent asks “Please give me guidance about my relationship with ________ and what to expect in the next month,” I might draw “Leo” zodiac card. This could provide insight into the querent or who the querent is referring to in the reading.

Example: Moonology Oracle Cards: A 44-Card Deck and Guidebook

Example: Work Your Light Oracle Cards by Rebecca Campbell

Nowadays, there are all sorts of oracle decks! The six types I mentioned above are definitely not an exhaustive list, but I wanted to include some of my favorites. What oracle deck themes have you been seeing lately?

Comment below and let me know!

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