Best J Names for Boys

Best J Names for Boys

Boy names starting with J have been hugely popular ever since the days (okay, centuries) when John was number one. Today, the J names at the top of the charts include other biblical classics like James, Jacob and Joseph, and modern favorites like Jackson and Jayden.

If you’re looking for a J name that’s just a little different, we’ve picked out some of the very best. Long and short, ancient and modern, popular and undiscovered, here are our top boy names beginning with J. Jump on in!


That Y transforms well-known Jacob into a more unusual name with lots of potential nicknames, including Jack, Jake, Cobe and Coby. Although it’s not as popular as it was ten years ago (thanks to baseball player Jacoby Ellsbury), it’s not ready for retirement yet. The British actor Derek Jacobi shows an alternative spelling and pronunciation, with emphasis on the first syllable.


Jago is a dashing alternative to the popular Jacob. Pronounced "JAY-go", "YAY-go", or "YAH-go" (depending on whether influenced by his Spanish or Cornish roots) we love it pronounced every way. Jago has that lively "-o" ending everyone loves, in line with chic and fashionable Hugo.


Jairo (pronounced "High-roh") is one of the underrated Spanish names that has ranked in the Top 1000 for the last 3 decades, although it has never cracked the Top 500. Jairo is a variation of Hebrew Jairus, meaning "sacred name". With that trending "-o" ending and an overall super-cool sound, we are surprised Jairo has not moved up more in the rankings.


This Swahili word meaning "brave" is primarily used in East Africa. Despite all it has going for it — a resonant meaning, on-trend I ending, and gender-neutral style — Jasiri has never been given to more than 30 American babies in a single year. We think that is due for a change and we would love to meet some baby Jasiris.


One of the most beloved names for Nameberry readers, Jasper is also catching on in the real world, rising fast to Number 128. Pretty much the only gemstone name that’s traditionally male, the Wise Men connection makes Jasper especially good for a Christmas baby. If you’re worried about popularity, the Scandinavian form Jesper is much rarer and just as lovely.

Top J Names for Boys in the US


This sweet gem (or Jem) of a name has a charming, youthful feel due to the endearing 10-year-old Jeremy Atticus Finch — "Jem" — from Harper Lee's classic To Kill a Mockingbird making it one of our favorite literary names. Jem can be a diminutive of Jeremy as well Jeremiah or James, but we adore Jem on his own.


The name of what is believed to be one of the oldest cities in the world is one of the coolest Biblical names today. As Jeremy and Jeremiah are starting to feel less fresh, spunky Jericho could take their place. Ranking just inside the Top 1000, we believe Jericho with his fashionable "-o" ending will continue to rise.


Jethro combines biblical style with a rural feel (thanks to Jethro Tull the agricultural reformer) and a folk-rock vibe (thanks to Jethro Tull the band). Mix in a cool -o ending and the nickname Jet, and it has a lot of potential. Need more persuasion? Jethro is below the US Top 1000, but ranks in the Nameberry charts. That’s a sure sign that it’s on parents’ minds.


Noah has been among the most popular boy name for years now, and classic Joseph has had his time to shine for centuries, never leaving the Top 30. Somehow, however, Joah has remained undiscovered. Joah is a simple but obscure biblical name held by 4 men in the Old Testament. The gentle sounds and the trending "-a" ending we see in names like Luca, Ezra, and Judah, make Joah a great contender today.


Of all the international variants, from Joachim to Gioacchino, Joaquin may be the coolest. This smooth Spanish name has long been popular in Latin America, but Joaquin Phoenix has brought it to the wider world’s attention in the last 15 years. It’s sitting steady in the 300s, making it a familiar but not overused cultural crossover.

Unique Boy Names Starting With J


Biblical name Jonah is the hottest new "Jo-" name for boys, joining Joseph, Josiah, and John at the top of the charts. The prophet Jonah was famously swallowed by a whale, only to emerge unharmed 3 days later. The gentle sounds as well as the peaceful meaning "dove" add to his appeal. Jonah in recent years is at his highest ever recorded in history, ranking at Number 140 in 2021. Jonas is a great option if you are looking for an equally stylish, but less popular variation.


This cool surname is rising fast. It has the same style as popular names ending in "-s" like Brooks and Hayes, and could honor anyone with a related name like John or Jane. Jones is the most common surname in Wales, so if you have any Welsh roots, chances are you’ll have it somewhere on your family tree. Plus, the nickname Jonesy is pretty darn cute.


Julian has been in the Top 50 for the last decade, making room for Julius to step into the spotlight as well. Associated with the legendary Roman general Julius Caesar, Julius fits in with the Latin names trending today such as Atticus, Augustus, and Maximus. Sweet nickname Jules can also stand on his own.


By Jove! The chief Roman god (Jupiter is the Roman version of the Greek god Zeus) and largest planet in our solar system is an undiscovered gem of a baby name. With parents looking for mythological names as well as the night sky for inspiration – think of Orion, Atlas and fellow sky-god ThorJupiter seems ripe for use. Mila Kunis’s character in the film Jupiter Ascending has launched it as a girls’ name too, as seen in the starbaby daughters of both Ashley Tisdale and Ed Sheeran.


Justice is in the Top 1000 for both boys and girls, making it one of the coolest gender-neutral names starting with J. In the lineup of modern virtue names, it speaks to anyone who values fairness and accountability. (Does that make it ironic that it’s banned in Australia and New Zealand?) It also feels like a fresh twist on 1980s and 90s favorite Justin. Justus is a more unusual option from the same root.

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About the Author

Brynn McKeon

Brynn McKeon

Brynn McKeon joined the Nameberry team in August of 2022 as an editor, and has written about topics such as the Ultimate Guide to Goddess Names and Redefining Classic Names. As Head Moderator, she also oversees our active Nameberry forums community. Brynn also writes the daily Name of the Day newsletter.

Outside of Nameberry, Brynn lives in New York State with her dog Raven, where she is working towards her Master's degree in Occupational Therapy. You can reach her at