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Cool Baby Names: Which Are The Hottest?

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What are the cool baby names?

That’s the first question most people ask us when they hear we have the unlikely profession of baby name experts. We hear it so often, in fact, that we wrote a book called Cool Names for Babies.

Still, when people ask us the question, we find ourselves stuttering and stammering.

Why?  Mostly because cool is in the eye (or ear) of the beholder.

Certainly, the websites that have sprung up purporting to direct you to cool baby names do nothing of the sort.   They only pop up when you google cool baby names because they’re optimized for that popular search term (one of the hard facts of the rough-and-tumble baby name biz) and not because they know anything about cool….or even baby names, for that matter.

One way to identify cool baby names might be to look at what cool people are naming their babies.  For the most part, this dovetails nicely with the names that nameberry visitors like best — yes, of course we’re cool! — and that are most searched for on the site.  These tend to have traditional roots but an offbeat feel and include:

girls

ALICE

BEATRIX

DOROTHY

IMOGEN

IVY

MAISIE

MILLIE

STELLA

WINNIE

boys

FELIX

FINN

KAI

MILO

OTTO

QUINN

SAWYER

SILAS

The problem with many of these names, however, is that they’re so universally identified as cool that really cool people consider them uncool.  Really cool people are looking for names that nobody yet thinks are cool, but that are cool.  Like what?  No matter what example I give — Ralph, Harriet, Eileen for God’s sake — simply uttering it aloud will either make it instantly uncool, or make you think that I’m an idiot.

Another path to cool baby names is to adopt the names of cool people, real and legendary.  For example:

girls

ALICE (in Wonderland)

FRANNY (of Franny & Zooey)

HARPER (Lee, author of To Kill A Mockingbird)

JADA (Pinkett Smith)

LOUISA MAY (Alcott, rockingest of the Little Women)

SCARLETT (Johansson and O’Hara)

SCOUT (young heroine of To Kill A Mockingbird)

ZADIE (author Smith)

boys

ABEL (the good brother of Cain and…)

ATTICUS (yet another admirable To Kill A Mockingbird personage)

AUDEN (W.H., the poet)

DEXTER (Television’s most appealing mass murderer)

HOLDEN (Caulfield)

JASPER (artist Johns)

JUDE (Law, though still cool?  Jury’s out.)

MILES (Davis)

MOSES (parted the Red Sea!)

NATHANIEL (Hawthorne)

OTIS (Redding)

TRUMAN (Capote)

Weirdly, the names of some very cool people still aren’t cool.  Brad and Angelina, for instance.  Johnny Depp.  Kate Moss.  But their kids’ names may qualify:

girls

HARLOW

LILA

MATILDA

ROMY

SHILOH

VIOLET

VIVIENNE

ZAHARA

boys

AXEL (Will Ferrell‘s son, but would be cool anyway)

KNOX and LEON

MADDOX

ROMAN

PAX

There’s also a kind of in-your-face cool that may appeal if  you also think neck tattoos and heavy metal are cool.  Not quite the nameberry style, but bad-ass names like Ryker and Breaker for boys, Karleigh and Destiny for girls are considered cool by lots of people.

And there are dozens of other kinds of cool baby names too, one to suit every taste and style, so many you could write a book about it. Oh, right. We did. If you want a cool name for your baby, check out Cool Names for Babies for thousands of great examples!

What names do YOU think are cool, and why?

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