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The Hottest Z Names of 2020

The Hottest Z Names of 2020

Names starting with Z could be zooming up the charts this year — they’re certainly hot with Nameberry readers!

Writing that makes me wonder if it’s because many of us have been saying “Zoom” a lot more than we used to, so the Z sound is on our minds.

Whether that’s the case or not, a lot of Z names have grown popular in recent years. On the girls’ side, Zoey is a Top 20 name when all the spellings are combined, and Zara is climbing steadily through the Top 300. Trending Z names for boys include cool nickname Zeke and pop prince Zayn.

But this is all from last year’s name data. How do we know what parents are interested in right now?

We analyzed pageviews for the names in our database over the last month, to see which names increased the most compared to the same time last year. In other words, the names our readers are more interested in now than they were a year ago.

A significant chunk of them begin with Z — more than you’d expect for a relatively uncommon initial. Of these, most are short with prominent vowels, especially for girls. Many are a twist on other names that are fashionable now: Ella, Bella and Stella lead to Zella, while Leon and Ryan are a short step away from Zion.

In order of the biggest increase in views, here are our 15 hottest Z names this year.

A couple of notes on the figures. On average, the traffic on our name pages grew by 17% in the last year. Zuko, the top name on this list, grew 15 times more than that, so it’s rising much faster than most names on the site. Also, in our database name pages are either boy or girl, even if the name is unisex.

Boy names

Zuko264% more views in 2020We can thank Avatar: The Last Airbender for the surge of interest in this name — Fire Lord Zuko is a major character in the TV series. So far that hasn’t translated to a huge amount of use for babies, but we could see it taking off.

Zuriel145% more views in 2020Hebrew names ending in -el are one of the hot trends of the year. The meaning “God is my rock” gives it extra appeal.

Zev94% more views in 2020A punchy syllable, a high Scrabble score, and the meaning “wolf”: Zev packs a lot of good things into three letters.

Zaccai89% more views in 2020An Old Testament name that deserves a lot more attention. Zaccai blends the best of Zack and Kai, and was only given to 23 boys in the US in 2019.

Zachariah64% more views in 2020The longest name on this list, biblical Zachariah continues to interest parents looking for a sweet-spot name that’s stylish, familiar, but not super popular.

Zion63% more views in 2020No surprise that this spiritual name is popular. Zion is falling a little as a girl name, but for boys it continued to rise in 2019, and looks to be headed towards the Top 100.

Zeno46% more views in 2020Zeno ticks several trend boxes: it’s an O-ending name that’s every bit as cool as Enzo and Theo, and it’s related to Zeus so it counts as a mythological name.

Girl names

Zira219% more views in 2020As internationally appealing as Mira and Kira… but with a Z!

Zariyah and Zaria95% and 69% more views in 2020Arabic flower name Zaria got its initial boost from the 1990s sitcom The Parent ‘Hood. The similar sound to popular Aria is what’s keeping it — and alternative spellings like Zariyah — in style today.

Zuri59% more views in 2020One of the most popular Swahili names in the US charts, Zuri — which means beautiful — is now in the Top 300.

Zella58% more views in 2020A fun member of the “Ella” name group, the recent boost in interest is probably from singer Zella Day, who released a new record this summer. Her parents got her name from a book in a museum.

Zora58% more views in 2020This Slavic name meaning dawn is red-hot. It entered the Top 1000 in 2018, and shot up nearly 200 places in 2019.

Zada46% more views in 2020A rare (in the States) Arabic name with a lucky meaning. The visual similarity to Ada may have helped to spark interest.

Zola41% more views in 2020Not just a zippy twist on Lola, but also a literary surname and a Grey’s Anatomy character. Zola entered the Top 1000 in 2018.

So will we see a big rise in baby names starting with Z in 2020? Or are they just popular on Nameberry because name enthusiasts love reading about unusual sounds? We look forward to finding out.

About the Author

Clare Green

Clare has been writing for Nameberry since 2015, covering everything from the next high-rising names to how to choose a multilingual name, and keeping up-to-date with international baby name rankings. She has a background in linguistics and librarianship, and lives in England with her husband and toddler. You can follow everything she reads about names on Twitter or Scoop.it, or reach her at clare@nameberry.com