Boy Names for Girls

Boy Names for Girls

Some of the coolest baby girl names are not originally girls' names at all, but boys' names -- many of which have officially become unisex names.

We're seeing more and more formerly 100% boy names being used for girls, from nicknames like Sam and Charlie (now 50-50 by gender!), to occupational names or surnames such as Sawyer or McKinley to formerly masculine names such as Quincy and Jude that have become truly unisex.

Celebrity parents Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds broke the gender barrier in a new way when they named their daughter James. Many parents followed suit, sometimes using James as a middle name.

The trendy Arlo is one boy name that's moving to the girls' side. Australian actress Asher Keddie is proof that Asher might be a good alternative to the dated Ashley. Ezra and Noah are Biblical names that are increasingly being used for girls as well as boys. And in Israel, Daniel is a Top 100 name...for girls.

While using male names for baby girls is a practice that's increasing, it's not brand new. Timothy, Michael, and Christopher are boy names that have occasionally been used for girls for decades.

Some people think it's wrong to use boy names for girls unless the practice also works in the opposite direction. While statistics show that more parents are giving their sons unisex names, we are not seeing boys given decidedly feminine names in the same way that baby girls are being given formerly masculine names.

In case anyone thinks this is just another wacky name theory, statistics prove that girls are being given all the names on this list in significant numbers. There were more than 50 baby girls in the US last year named Max and Maxwell, for instance, as well as Maverick, Landon, Chase, Auden, and Atlas.

Here, some boy names that can work for girls, ordered by their current popularity on Nameberry.

RELATED:

Unisex Names

Gender Neutral Name Generator

  1. DanielHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "God is my judge"
    • Description:

      Daniel is one of only a handful of male names that sounds both classic and modern, strong yet approachable, and popular but not cliched. It also has a solid Old Testament pedigree. The only real downside: There are about 10,000 Daniels named each year, making it a less than distinctive choice.
  2. CodyHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "helpful, pillow"
    • Description:

      In the early 1990s, Cody was in the Top 25 most popular boys' names in the USA; but it has been in decline since then. It retains a greater degree of popularity in the UK, however. Cody might be short for Dakota but despite its nickname feeling, it's a name of its own.
  3. BlakeHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "fair-haired, dark"
    • Description:

      The unisex Blake, which indeed has two conflicting meanings, has a briskly efficient image when used for a girl.
  4. CollinsHeart
    • Origin:

      Surname derived from Nicholas or Colin
    • Meaning:

      "people of victory or pup"
    • Description:

      Collins is a surname name that has made the girls' Top 1000 thanks to its use for the daughter of the real-life Blind Side heroine. This derivation of the Greek Nicholas—which means "people of victory"—or the Irish and Scottish Colin—which may itself be a Nicholas derivation or an Anglicization of the word for pup—has a stylish feel made more so by that final s.
  5. EllisHeart
    • Origin:

      English surname derived from Elijah or Elias or Welsh
    • Meaning:

      "benevolent"
    • Description:

      Ellis, a surname used sparingly as a first in the Wallace/Morris period, sounds new now for girls, as a gender-neutral alternative to Ella or Alice. It debuted in the US Top 1000 for girls in 2015.-- Ellis has always been in the Top 1000 for boys -- and seems to be headed straight up. One of the most popular gender-neutral names, currently there are two baby boys named Ellis for every girl.
  6. JamesHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "supplanter"
    • Description:

      James for a girl? Believe it or not, this is one of the boy names for girls" gaining a lot of attention these days, since Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds shocked the world by choosing it for their eldest daughter in 2014 (after his late father).
  7. SawyerHeart
    • Origin:

      English occupational name
    • Meaning:

      "woodcutter"
    • Description:

      Sawyer is one of the top unisex names, used for their daughters by such parents as Sara Gilbert, co-host of The Talk and former actress on Roseanne, currently on The Conners. Sawyer is is one of those newly-stylish occupational names that can work for either gender. If you want something with less brawn and more brains than Sawyer, try Sayer.
  8. AugustHeart
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "majestic, venerable"
    • Description:

      Though associated traditionally (and fashionably) with boys, it has been used occasionally for girls as well – by Garth Brooks, Nicolas Cage, and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, for example. But August is used significantly more often for girls these days than traditional feminine variations Augusta and Augustina, and makes for a fresh twist on traditional month names like April and May, as well as an updated spin on season name Autumn.
  9. NoahHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "motion"
    • Description:

      Okay, this is going to be confusing...
  10. HarleyHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "the long field"
    • Description:

      Once a macho biker name, Harley is now showing its softer side. In the UK, Harley is predominantly masculine, but it's currently more popular for girls than boys in the US.
  11. KaiHeart
    • Origin:

      Hawaiian
    • Meaning:

      "sea"
    • Description:

      This appealing multi-cultural name, pronounced KYE, is beginning to be used for girls as well as boys. Among its many derivations and meanings: "sea" in Hawaiian, "forgiveness" in Japanese, "willow tree" in Navajo, "food" in Maori, and "earth" in Scandinavian. For girls, it debuted on the US Top 1000 in 2010.
  12. JudeHeart
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Judith or variation of Judah
    • Meaning:

      "praised"
    • Description:

      Jude may be a rising boys' name, thanks to Jude Law, but it's also a new way to spin Judy or Judith as well as a name that's long been used quietly for girls as well as boys. Alexis Stewart, daughter of Martha, named her daughter Jude and Jessica Lange plays Sister Jude on American Horror Story.
  13. ElliotHeart
    • Origin:

      Anglicization of Elijah or Elias
    • Meaning:

      "Jehovah is God"
    • Description:

      Elliot is another traditional boy name used for girls", a trend led by political commentator George Stephanopoulos and his actress wife Ali Wentworth.
  14. EzraHeart
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "help"
    • Description:

      Ezra is a biblical favorite for boys that's been making inroads into the girls' Top 1000 recently and continues to rise.
  15. WinslowHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "friend's hill or burial mound"
    • Description:

      Winslow's most famous reference may be male painter Winslow Homer, but as a name it's beginning to be on the rise for girls. Adorable nickname Winnie may be the reason. Other unusual painterly possibilities for either sex: O'Keeffe, Hopper, and just plain Painter.
  16. ArloHeart
    • Origin:

      Irish, English
    • Meaning:

      "between two hills"
    • Description:

      Arlo, an unexpectedly popular name for boys these days, is also finding new life as a girls' name. The first name Arlo may be rooted in the surname Arlow or the place name Aherlow, meaning "between two highlands". As a surname, it also has roots in a place name meaning "rocky hill".
  17. LoganHeart
    • Origin:

      Scottish surname
    • Meaning:

      "little hollow"
    • Description:

      Logan, with its appealing Scottish burr, is a very hot boys' name—it's in the national Top 10 and heading for Number 1 in some states—and can also make a rich and resonant choice for a girl. Jason and Jordan Mewes have a daughter named Logan Lee.
  18. QuincyHeart
    • Origin:

      French from Latin
    • Meaning:

      "estate of the fifth son"
    • Description:

      Quincy is a Presidential surname name that actually sounds both cute and strong when used for a girl. While it's still outside the Top 1000, over 200 baby girls were named Quincy in the US in 2021, up from about 100 a decade before. While there are two times as many boys named Quincy, it has now become a genuinely unisex name.
  19. SpencerHeart
    • Origin:

      French
    • Meaning:

      "keeper of provisions"
    • Description:

      Yes, Spencer makes a plausible and powerful female choice these days, though still thought of as primarily for boys. Kelsey Grammer used it for his daughter in the 1980's. Spencer made its first appearance on the girls' Top 1000 in 2017.
  20. KirbyHeart
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "church settlement"
    • Description:

      Unisex name around for several decades for boys and now ripe for girls.