Girl Names Starting with H
Girls names that start with H are led today by Harper, whose meteoric rise to the Top 10 has made it the Number 1 H name for girls. Biblical Hannah was a huge hit in the 90s and remains popular today, while classic Helen was in the Top 10 girl names for nearly five decades.
Along with Harper and Hannah, H names for girls ranking in the current US Top 200 include Hazel, Hailey, Hadley, and Harmony. H name Heloise makes France's Top 100 baby girl names, while Helena ranks among the Top 100 girl names of both Germany and Spain.
The letter H has an angelic connection, with popular words-turned-names such as Hope, Haven, and Heaven, and is also a favorite initial for female names in the Harry Potter novels, with characters Hermione, Hedwig, and Helga.
Here’s our complete list of H names for girls. The top names below rank among the current US Top 1000 Baby Names and are ordered by popularity. Unique names rank below the Top 1000 and are listed alphabetically.
Meaning:"the hazelnut tree"
Description:Hazel is a name applied from the English word hazel, referring to the hazelnut tree. The word was derived from the Old English hæsel of the same meaning. Historically, a wand of hazel symbolized protection and authority.
Description:Harper is a red hot name for girls, having jumped from obscurity to near the top of the popularity list in less than a decade; it entered the Top 10 for the first time in 2015, and has stayed near there since. Harper is a prime example of the trend of surnames that turn into boys' names and then become girls' names. Harper was rarely heard for either sex before the mid-2000s, entering the girls' list in 2004. (For boys, it was in use until 1906 when it dropped off the scope and didn't reappear until a full century later.)
Meaning:"rock hill or army hill"
Description:Jean Harlow (born Harlean Carpenter), the original platinum blonde bombshell, was a symbol of 1930s glamour, a factor that first Patricia Arquette and then Nicole Richie and Joel Madden probably had in mind when they gave their daughters the distinctive surname name Harlow.
Origin:Latinate form of Helen, Greek
Meaning:"torch; shining light"
Description:Helena is a more delicate and dainty version of Helen, a favorite of Shakespeare, who used it in both All's Well That Ends Well and A Midsummer's Night Dream. Historically, Helena was the mother of Constantine the Great (and, supposedly, the daughter of Old King Cole), who became a fourth century saint--Evelyn Waugh wrote his only historical novel, Helena, based on her story.
Description:Hannah originated as a variation of the Hebrew name Channah, derived from the word channan, meaning "grace." In the Old Testament, Hannah is the mother of Samuel. Names including Anne, Anna, Nancy, Anya, Annika, and Annabel are all related to Hannah. Alternate spellings such as Hana, Hanna, and Chana are also used.
Origin:English, diminutive of Harriet
Description:In the USA, Hattie is one of those nicknames that is now more popular than its parent name, Harriet. In England, however, Harriet is still by far more popular than Hattie, while in Australia, Harriet is highly popular while no data exists on Hattie. In the US, we’d like to see Harriet get more usage but we’re happy to see Hattie again.
Description:Hadley, most famous as the name of Ernest Hemingway's first wife, is more sophisticated, professional, and modern than cousins Harley, Haley, or Hayden. The hit book The Paris Wife, a novel told from the point of view of Hadley Hemingway (born Elizabeth Hadley Richardson), has helped popularize the name, which also appears on the vampire show True Blood. Hadley could become this generation's Hailey.
Origin:Diminutive of Adelheid; German
Description:Heidi became known—and popular—via the 1880 eponymous children's classic by Swiss writer Johanna Spyri and, despite decades of American Heidis of all sizes, shapes, and personalities, the name seems permanently tethered to that spunky little girl on the Alpine mountaintop in the book and Shirley Temple movie.
Meaning:"torch; shining light"
Description:Helen is a name that has connoted beauty since ancient times – Helen of Troy was the the mythological "face that launched a thousand ships," over whom the ten-year Trojan War was fought.
Meaning:"dweller at the meadow by the manor"
Description:Hallie -- it rhymes with alley and is not to be confused with Halle or Hailey or Holly -- is one of those comfy nicknamish names that are in favor in these complicated times.
Description:Can a name as virtuous as Hope be cool and trendy? Strangely enough -- yes. But though this optimistic Puritan favorite is experiencing substantial popularity, Hope is too pure and elegant to be corrupted, a lovely classic that deserves all the attention it's getting.
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.
Origin:English nature name
Description:Holly ranks just in British Top 50, but it's been out of favor here since the 1970s Era of Nickname Names. Still, the name may be on her way back as a rejuvenated nature pick.
Origin:Dutch place name
Description:Holland is one of the coolest geographical names, unadorned and elegant, evocative of fine Rembrandt portraits and fields of pink and yellow tulips. It first entered the US Top 1000 in 2014.
Origin:English and Scottish clan name
Description:There are no less than ten different variations of Hailey on the current Most Popular list, but this is the spelling that brought it into the Top 10 of 2010, although it has recently dipped a bit in popularity. So, although Hailey has a shiny, unpretentious charm, its mass popularity makes it very much of the moment. Look for the Hailee spelling to rise via Hailee Steinfeld, the young actress Oscar-nominated for her performance in True Grit.
Description:A newly successful name for girls, which, like Brayden and Caden, used to be strictly for the boys. Young Heroes and now Nashville star Hayden Panettiere planted it in the girls' camp.
Origin:Word name, English
Description:Haven is a recently invented safe-harbor name that appeals to an increasing number of parents who don't want to voyage quite as far as Heaven.
Origin:Hebrew, Hawaiian, Maori, Japanese
Meaning:"grace, work, glow, flower"
Description:Many things to many peoples: a flower name, also spelled Hanae, to the Japanese; a Czech and Polish short form of Johana; and an alternate form of the biblical name Hannah in the US. It also means "craft, work" in Hawaiian and "glow" in Maori.
Description:If Melody and Lyric are on your style sheet, the peaceful Harmony, popularized by Buffy the Vampire Slayer, should be too.
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.
Description:This Hebrew name of Queen Esther is well used in Israel (especially for girls born around the holiday of Purim), and in the US is the name of a Zionist women's philanthropic organization. Formerly shunned as hyper-religious, this name entered the Top 1000 in 2007. The nickname Haddie could make it more usable.
Origin:Norse, male diminutive of Harald
Description:Until the beautiful actress Halle Berry inspired hundreds of parents to emulate her name, it was the diminutive Swedish families used for their sons christened Harald. Now, in a complete turnaround, it couldn't be more feminine. It is worth noting, however, that its popularity has fallen dramatically since 2002 when it reached a high of 316.
Meaning:"one who hunts"
Description:This surname gained momentum in the 1990s, when it was particularly in vogue for males. However, it seems to be experiencing a surge for females—it was one of the fastest-rising names of 2013, jumping 266 spots back into the Top 1000.
Description:It all started in 1946, when Hayley Mills was given her mother's maiden name. Now that spelling is in third place, after Hailey and Haley, with all three adding up to one of the most popular names in the country. Hayley is the most used spelling in Australia.
Description:Among the children named Heaven are the daughters of TV personality Brooke Burke and rap singer Lil' Mo, who also has a daughter named God'iss Love. Some parents have taken to using Nevaeh instead—Heaven spelled backwards.
Origin:Spelling variation of Hannah
Description:This simplified version is not nearly as popular as the original (it also destroys a perfectly good palindrome), and has been on the decline in recent years.
Origin:English, word name
Description:The word has been used in English since the sixteenth century, and in the sacred sense since the seventeenth; it replaced “glory,” the older term for divine light. Being a modern word, Halo didn’t become used as a name until around the nineteenth century. Halo is now mostly given to girls, and has become more common since the Halo video game series was released in 2001, in which Halo rings are huge structures used as weapons, but do have a religious connection. A space age virtue name and possible honour name for Gloria.
Description:The second most popular spelling of this name is also the most straightforward.
Origin:Modern invented name
Description:Combine two parts Paisley with one part Hazel and one part Harley, add a dash of Hayes, and voila: Haisley.
Origin:Spelling variation of Hadley, English
Description:Hadley, an old surname-name best known as the name of author Ernest Hemingway's "Paris Wife," only recently broke onto the scene in a big way. While Hadley has considerable appeal, spelling variations such as Hadleigh—and onward to Hadleah, Hadleah, Hadli and so on—only emphasize its trendiness. Hadleigh made its first appearance on the US Top 1000 in 2014.
Origin:Spelling variation of Hailey
Description:Haylee dropped out of the Top 500 for the first time since 1992 recently, in step with a decline by Hailey (though the alternative Hadley is still near the Top 100). For some, Haylee is one E too many, but it reflects the broader popularity in -lee suffixes.
Origin:Spelling variation of Hadley
Description:This extra-trendy -ee suffix helped Hadlee ride the wave of Hadley's popularity into the US Top 1000 in 2013.
Origin:Spelling variation of Harley
Description:This invented spelling is much less popular than its biker counterpart. Regardless, it is on the rise and has been in the US Top 1000 since 2012.