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18 Hottest New Baby Names

new baby names

by Abby Sandel

Back in 1944, names like Judy, Beverly, and Bruce felt new. In the 1970s, Kelly, Justin, and Shawn were novel. And in 1994, we were busy naming our sons original choices like Austin and Tyler, while our daughters became Alexis and Taylor.

Parents are always dreaming up new baby names, taking our inspiration from pop culture and the past. Not every new name feels freshly minted. Some seem like throwbacks, even vintage gems. Others become mainstream so quickly that it’s hard to imagine the names haven’t always been in use.

But make no mistake: plenty of the most popular baby names in the US are recent arrivals, as new the newborns who wear them.

How to define a truly new baby name? There are eight boy names and ten girl names that have only ranked in the US Top 100 for the past five years. They’ve also (almost) never charted in the US Top 1000 prior to 1984 – thirty years ago.

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Future Top 10 names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

We’re just days away from the new year!  As 2014 draws to a close, plenty of websites and hospital systems have released their top baby names for the past twelve months.

At Nameberry, Asher, Declan, and Atticus topped the boys’ list, while Imogen, Khaleesi, and Charlotte were favorites for girls.

The official 2014 US data doesn’t come out until May 2015.  But this early information lets us read the tea leaves and guess – or hope! – which names might come out on top when we see the official numbers in a few months.

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baby name Jaxon

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Not only did we have a bumper crop of high profile birth announcements last week, but the Social Security Administration also released the eagerly anticipated 2013 baby name data.

Oh, the excitement!

Sure, the US isn’t the only country to share statistics – and we’re kind of late to the party, since plenty of countries publish their lists earlier in the year.  But with the sheer number of newborns – just shy of four million – the US data is the mother lode.

Plenty of parents check popularity data when choosing their child’s name.  This week, it’s as if every model, athlete, actor, reality star, and musician seemed to agree: mainstream names are great, but maybe something just outside the Top Ten.

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Nameberry 9 by Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

A French film made its US debut this week.  What’s in a Name? takes us to a dinner party.  A happy couple announces that they’re expecting a son, and they’ve chosen a name.


It’s as scandalous a choice in French as it would be in English, and the fellow guests are aghast.

The party goes downhill from there.  Other guests are criticized for their children’s “pretentious” names: Myrtille and Apollin.

Such scathing comments are usually reserved for gossip, or maybe anonymous online forums.  Can you imagine yourself in a social setting, hearing your child’s name ripped to shreds?  Let’s hope the movie – and the play it is based on – are pure fiction.

Then again, even if Adolf is your beloved grandfather’s given name, I would think long and hard about giving the name to a son.  It’s one of a very few names, like Lucifer, that strike me as off limits for good reason.

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By Abby Sandel of Appellation Mountain–The Nameberry 9

It has been another week filled with bold, even brash names for newborn boys.  Girls’ names are no less daring, with inspiration coming from the worlds of opera and automobiles.

None of the boys’ choices would have been recognizable as given names two hundred or even fifty years ago.  The girls’ names have more history, but they still feel fresh and surprising in 2013.

With all of these headline-grabbing given names, does it make it harder or easier to name a child of your own?

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