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Unisex Baby Names

by Pamela Redmond and Linda Rosenkrantz, creators of Nameberry
Parents in search of unisex baby names that can be used for either girls or boys will find helpful lists here, collecting Color Names and Artist Names that can be used as unisex baby names, pointing out Biblical Place Names and Weather Names that can be used for either gender. Gender neutral names can be popular or unique and come from a range of cultures and styles. If you're looking for an androgynous name for your baby boy or girl, browse the lists in the section.

  • Boy Names for Girls

    Some of the coolest baby girl names are not girls' names at all but boys' names -- many of which have officially become unisex names. We're seeing more and more fomerly 100% boy names being used for girls, from nicknames like Sam and Charlie (now 50-50 by gender!), to occupational or surnames such as Sawyer or McKinley to formerly masculine names such as Quincy and Jude that have become truly unisex. Here, some boy names that can work for girls.

  • Celebrity Baby Word Names

    Gwyneth Paltrow's Apple may still be the most famous case, but these days she's far from the only celebrity child with a word name. Today, there are enough celebrity baby names that are also words that we can fill a whole long list with them. In their ever-widening search for new and unique names, celebrities are turning to words that relate to nature, spirituality, animals, places, weather, colors, even numbers. Bonus: many of these, by virtue of being new and unconventional, count as truly unisex baby names. Here, word names that have been used in recent years for celebrity babies.

  • Color Names for Babies

    Using color names for babies started with Amber, then Rose drove the point home. While many of the original color names were female, today there are mostly-male color names as well as unisex baby names derived from colors. Today's name hues range from the obvious -- Violet and Scarlett -- to the most exotic, from Azure to Zinc. The full spectrum of color names for babies:

  • Cool Unique Unisex Names

    Unisex baby names are both popular and stylish, true, but there are also hundreds of cool names that work equally well for boys and girls. Along with Nico and True, other cool unique unisex names ranking in the US Top 1000 include River, Justice, Bowie, and Scout. Other cool unique baby names used more for both boys and girls include Story, Indigo, and Royal. Here, some of our favorite unique baby names that are gender neutral.

  • Geezer Names for Girls

    Blame it on Sidney. This name, which conjures up images of thick glasses, a snowfall of dandruff on shoulders, and plaid polyester pants pulled up to the sternum, sounds (strangely enough) nothing less than charming, nothing short of cool when applied to a little girl. And so too can the other geezer names here. Caution: Most of these names should not be bestowed on a boy. The world is not yet ready for another generation of male Seymours and Sheldons, although keep in mind that among the hottest boys' names in the UK now are Harvey and Leon.

  • Gender-Neutral Baby Names

    Gender neutral baby names and unisex baby names are similar, but not exactly the same. We think of gender-neutral names as names that are truly free of a specific gender identity, while unisex names are names that are used for both sexes but may nevertheless skew more masculine or feminine. Names that we consider gender-neutral include the following.

  • Irish Surname Names

    Many of the best Irish baby names are not first names at all but Irish surname names. Here's a whole group of rollicking names that work for both girls and boys....or you can use one from your own family background. Or click here for our full list of Irish baby names.

  • Italian Word Names

    One new direction -- or is it two? -- for the intrepid baby namer is toward foreign-word names, which combine two of today's coolest trends. We combed our own diccionarios for Italian words that could make perfectly appropriate, attractive Italian baby names. But no reason to stop here--consider words from the language of your own ethnic background, be it Czech or Chinese, and add them to the list of your personal possibilities.

  • Mac Names

    Names that start with Mac or Mc are Irish or Scottish patronymics designating "son of." Of course, many of the most popular Mac names today, such as Mackenzie and McKenna, are usually given to girls. But there are a raft of lesser-used Mac names that work well for boys and lead to the adorable short form Mac. Here, a range of Mac names -- but one from your own family will work too.

  • Musician Baby Names

    Since musicians invented the concept of cool, where better to look for baby name inspiration than to their own names? Musician baby names are a subset of celebrity-inspired baby names—the baby names here are drawn from both the first names and last names of well-known rockstars, crooners, and pop queens. For names inspired by the music itself, take a look at our list of musical baby names, and be sure to check out Fameberry for more celebrity baby names.

  • Nature Names for Babies

    The popularity of nature names has risen along with the green movement, which has made us more appreciative of all things connected with nature. We have also seen a rise in nature baby names as parents look for names beyond the usual first name boundaries. Many of the best nature names, such as Sage and River, can work for either gender and also carry the advantage of being easily recognized and spelled and pronounced while at the same time moving beyond the tradition lexicon of names.

    Along with Sage and River, other nature names in the US Top 1000 include Briar, Dahlia, Fox, Ivy, Laurel, Magnolia, Willow, and Wren. If you fancy baby names related to nature that are off the beaten path, Canyon, Grove, Harbor, and Prairie are stylish options that have not yet been discovered by the masses.

    For more nature names, you can consult our lists of flower names, tree names, water names, sky names, and so on. Here is where you can browse some of the coolest nature names today.

  • Occupational Baby Names

    Most occupational baby names were originally surnames that described a person’s job. Names related to jobs have taken on significant style value over the past years and are destined to rise even further. Think of them as the surname-names or place-names of the future. Most of these occupational baby names work best for boys but can cross over to the girls' side.

  • Place Names for Babies

    Place names for babies come from all over the globe and can include city names, state names, country names, even mountain and ocean names. Here, the most popular place names from around the world used for both girls and boys. For more exotic choices, see our list of Place Names Off The Map.

  • Son Baby Names

    Baby names that end in son originated just the way you think: they designated that the person—Jackson, say, or Jefferson—was the son of Jack or Jeffery. Son makes a stylish first name ending today, mostly for boys but since the era of Allison, also for girls. Son baby names can make for an original way to honor an ancestor or relative while slightly varying the name. Some prime examples:

  • Surname Baby Names

    Surname baby names have been growing in popularity for boys and girls too over the past few decades, making them one of the prime classes of gender neutral names. Now, anything goes, so look for a long-lost surname in your family or even search the phone book for something you love. Or look through this list for more unusual surname baby names.

  • Surname Favorites

    Surname names have been on the rise as baby names for a couple of decades now. Here are some of the most popular, for girls as well as boys.

  • Top Unisex Baby Names

    The top unisex baby names are widely-used these days for both girls and boys. The most popular unisex names for girls include Avery, Riley, and Harper. For boys, the top unisex names are Carter, Dylan, and Lincoln. Most unisex names lean at least slightly towards one gender or the other, though there are some names that feel unisex but are really used nearly exclusively for girls or boys: Addison and Madison are examples of popular names for girls that may have started out as boys' names and moved into the unisex category, but are now squarely on the girls' side. The names on this list are given to at least 10 percent of the minority sex and rank among the most popular gender neutral names today.

  • Top Unisex Names On Nameberry

    These 35 names are the top unisex baby names on Nameberry, meaning names that are often used for both boys and girls. Many of them are relatively new names that don't have strong ties with either sex, though some started out as first names for one sex (usually male) and have since been adopted for the other sex as well. These names may be especially appealing to the growing portion of parents who wish to raise their children without reference to traditional gender norms. You can find more unisex names, and learn about the gender breakdown of each name over time, on our Unisex Names page .

  • Unisex Names for Girls

    Unisex names for girls encompass those that originated as male names but migrated to the girls' side, names that feel gender-neutral but in fact are used mostly for girls, and truly unisex names that work as well for girls as for boys. On this list we have not included boys' names that are now used occasionally for girls, such as James or Owen, or once-unisex names that have become predominantly male, such as Kyrie. The unisex names here are among the most popular for baby girls.

  • Unisex Names for Girls

    Unisex names for girls encompass those that originated as male names but migrated to the girls' side, names that feel gender-neutral but in fact are used mostly for girls, and truly unisex names that work as well for girls as for boys. On this list we have not included boys' names that are now used occasionally for girls, such as James or Owen, or once-unisex names that have become predominantly male, such as Kyrie. The unisex names here are among the most popular for baby girls.