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By Pamela Redmond Satran

What are the hottest baby names today, those zooming toward the top of the popularity list?

Identifying which names are moving fastest toward the top is an art, but there can also be some science to it.  We asked the Wizard of Nameberry, our engineer Hugh Hunter, to plot the upward trajectory of 20 names that have been vaulting up the charts over the past decade.  He crunched the numbers and came up with a Hotness Quotient: a number that plots each name’s relative hotness and stands for the number of places it will jump each year if it continues moving up the ranks at the same pace.

We tracked all the names on our list from 2001 through 2013; entering the Top 1000 more recently than that skews the HQ unfairly high.  Eloise, which reentered the Top 1000 in 2009, for instance, has an HQ of 145, nearly three times as high as our Number 1 name Adeline, while newcomer Jax, which entered in 2005, stands at 96, twice as high as our top boys’ name Finn.   But these names are unlikely to continue moving up at this velocity.

Here, our ten hottest girls’ and ten hottest boys’ choices., with their individual Hotness Quotients:

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Baby Names 2012: What’s Hot Now

arya

The hottest baby names 2012 – those attracting the biggest spikes in views on Nameberry for the first six months of this year – are an astonishing group: Highly unusual yet strangely familiar, heavily influenced by pop culture yet boldly individualistic.

The strongest baby name influences right now: Hunger Games, Game of Thrones, and ancient Rome.  Many of the hot names relate to nature and to worlds beyond our own.  And most share a transcendence of traditional gender identity, containing elements of names for the opposite gender if not crossing over to unisex territory.

Nameberry’s hottest names of the year, which we predict you’ll be hearing lots more of in the future, are:

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Baby Names 2010: The Hottest Trends

Baby Name Trends

What are as the hottest 2010 baby names trends?  Here, our 15 top picks:

MOST FASHIONABLE CONSONANT

L, by far, with the booming fashionableness of almost every L name for girls, and most especially those with two L sounds: Lila, Lola, Layla, Leila, Lily, Lillian, Delilah, Tallulah, even Lulu and Lucille.

NEW “IT” VOWEL

E, with Emma taking over from Emily (now number 3) at the top of the girls’ list, and a range of E names for both boys and girls rising through the ranks: Ethan, Eden, Eleanor, Emmett, Eli, Eliza, Elijah, Ella, Evan, Eva, Eloise, Evangeline, Elliot, Esme, et nearly al.

LATEST GENDER-BENDING TREND

Male-female name equivalents: Auden and Audrey, Isaiah and Isabella, Theo and Thea.  In fact, an association with a popular name of the opposite sex is enough to propel an unlikely choice to prominence: Edison on the coattails of Addison, for example, or Malachi hitching a ride with Makayla.

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