Hot New Names of the 2010s
Description:The name of a British town on the Thames that hosts a famous regatta. Henley is one of the English baby names soaring in popularity for both boys and girls in the US, but is now much more popular for girls. In the UK, however, it is almost unused for girls, with just 3 female babies named Henley as recently as 2014.
Meaning:"son of Anne"
Description:Anson has always been rare, though you might think of actor Anson Williams, best known for playing Potsie Weber on 1970s sitcom Happy Days. As a direct result of the show's popularity, Anson charted in the US Top 1000 from 1976 to 1981.
Meaning:"tall man's town"
Description:The great African-American Harlem Renaissance writer Langston Hughes put this one on the map; actor Laurence Fishburne adopted it for his now grown son, born in 1987. Despite these popular associations, the name didn't make it into the US Top 1000 until 2013. This name is even less used in England or Wales, where as recently as 2014 no births were registered using this name.
Description:The boys' name Elon is best known today as the name of Elon Musk, eccentric billionaire founder of Tesla and SpaceX. With Canadian singer Grimes, Elon Musk has a son with an even more unusual name, X Æ A-12.
Description:More popular in its Layton spelling, Leighton is rising in popularity in the US for both sexes simultaneously, although this spelling remains more popular for girls for now – no doubt helped by actress Leighton Meester. Lleyton – as in Australian tennis star Lleyton Hewitt – is another, even more complicated, variant spelling.
Meaning:"son of Nicholas"
Description:A fresher spin on Jaxon, with built-in cool nickname Nix, and a great way to honor an ancestral Nick. But the association with disgraced former president Richard Nixon remains strong, which might explain why this otherwise bang-on-trend surname name has remained under the radar, peaking at #482 in 2017.
Origin:Diminutive of Ariel, Hebrew
Meaning:"lion of God"
Description:In 2010, baby boys named Ari outnumbered baby girls 4 to 1; today, there are nearly equal numbers of boys and girls named Ari. And that's only counting the babies who receive Ari as a full name. Ari can also be short for not only Ariel but Aria, Arya, Ariana, and any other name starting with Ari. Ari entered the US Top 1000 for girls in 2016.
Origin:Spelling variation of Nia
Description:Related to Nia and Naia, Naya was new to the US Top 1000 in 2014 and benefits from the short and simple pronunciation that many parents are seeking in fresh names. It also has obvious similarities to popular Mia and Maya.
Description:Brinley was a surprise entrant to the girls’ names list in 2009, coming in at Number 778; it has since risen to Number 337. We've also seen it spelled Brinlee, Brinlea and Brinleigh.
Meaning:"from the land of the Christians"
Description:This pretty name found in Spanish-speaking countries shares the diminutive of Romy—also spelled Romi—with Rosemary. It joined the US Top 1000 for the first time in 2015.
Meaning:"greater; or, a military rank"
Description:This bold choice soared in popularity from 2008 to 2013, and now seems to have plateaued. But watch out—the character Major Major Major Major in the classic absurdist novel Catch-22 had a terrible time.
Description:Aitana is the name of a Spanish mountain used by the poet Rafael Alberti for his daughter. He reportedly chose it because the mountain was his last glimpse of Spain when he went into exile after the Spanish Civil War. The name was popularized by Aitana Alberti's goddaughter and namesake, actress Aitana Sanchez-Gijan. It became one of the fastest-rising girls names in 2016, after entering the US Top 1000 in 2015, and is among the most popular Spanish names for girls in its native Spain and beyond.
Meaning:"highly valued possession"
Description:Doting parents have begun to use names like Precious and Treasure, which are sweet for a baby, but might not hold up over the years. Treasure was used for nearly 300 baby girls in one recent year.
Origin:International feminine variation of Jan
Description:A sweet name with many cross-cultural ties: it's an equivalent of Jane in languages including Czech, Slovak, Dutch, German, Slovene, Catalan, Estonian, and Latvian.
Description:Deriving from the same East Asian root as Malaysia and Malay, Malaya is a name that recalls the more popular Maya and the name of 2014 Nobel Peace Laureate Malala Yousafzai. It first appeared in the US Top 1000 in 2006.
Description:A variation of mega popular name Emma and all of her cousins, Emmie came back to the US Top 1000 for the first time in 80 years in 2016. It's phonetically the same as more popular Emmy, but this option may avoid the award show connection. We could see it rising in future years.
Origin:Italian place name or Slavic
Description:As Mila rises for girls, so Milan is becoming a more popular option for boys, especially after singer Shakira chose it for her son. After a 55-year hiatus, it reentered the Top 1000 in 2013 and is heading dramatically upward.
Description:Is Amora a real name? It made a strong entrance to the US Top 1000 in 2017 so it's one of the Spanish names for girls that is obviously catching on, perhaps thanks to its similarity to Amara, a multicultural name that's achieving widespread popularity here and abroad. Amora sounds like the Latinate amore and is one of the romantic names that mean love, familiar via the classic Dean Martin song That's Amore ("When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie...). Amora also borrows something from Amanda, something from Maura, and makes an attractive choice no matter what its pedigree.
Meaning:"son of Nicholas"
Description:Author Colson Whitehead introduced this surname-name to the lexicon, perfect for, well, a son or grandson of a Nicholas.
Origin:English occupational name
Description:Reese Witherspoon's Deacon has opened this churchy direction for occupational names. It reentered the US Top 1000 in 2015.