STRONG Names for Girls

  1. Arwen
    • Origin:

      Literature, Sindarin
    • Meaning:

      "noble maiden"
    • Description:

      Arwen is well known as princess of the Elves in Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. The author took inspiration from Welsh for many of his character names, and indeed Arwen and its masculine counterpart Arwyn do have a modest history of use as legitimate Welsh names, deriving from the -wyn suffix ("fair, blessed") plus an intensifying prefix.
  2. Aspen
    • Origin:

      Nature and place-name
    • Description:

      Aspen is part of two groups of stylish and unique baby names: nature names and place-names. The name of a graceful tree in the poplar family with heart-shaped leaves so delicate they quiver in the gentlest breeze, Aspen is also the name of a trendy Colorado ski resort. Aspen started as a unisex name possibility but now is much more frequently worn by girls.
  3. August
    • 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.
  4. Blanche
    • Origin:

      French
    • Meaning:

      "white"
    • Description:

      Blanche, which originated as a nickname for a pale blonde and then became associated with the notion of purity, was in style a century ago, ranking in the double digits until 1920. She then had to fight the stereotype of faded Southern belle, a la Blanche DuBois in Tennessee Williams's A Streetcar Named Desire and Blanche Devereaux in TV's Golden Girls. Now all three of the Golden Girls--Blanche, Rose and Dorothy--could be ready for revival, with Blanche sounding like a stronger, simpler alternative to Bianca.
  5. Blythe
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "happy, carefree"
    • Description:

      Blythe originated as a nickname for an upbeat person, coming from the Old English word bliðe, meaning "merry" or "cheerful." Today the homophone blithe shares the same meaning. Blythe was eventually adapted to a surname before it became a feminine given name.
  6. Briar
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "a thorny patch"
    • Description:

      Fairy-tale memories of Sleeping Beauty inspire some parents—such as Rachel Bilson and Hayden Christensen—to call their daughters Briar Rose. But Briar plus a different middle name might work even better. It's one of the newly popular nature-word names, charting in the US for the first time in 2015 for both genders.
  7. Charlie
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Charles or Charlotte
    • Meaning:

      "free man"
    • Description:

      Charlie is one of the friendly, tomboyish male nickname names--another is Sam-- now used almost as frequently for girls: in 2015, it ranked higher on the girls list than on the boys list for the first time. That makes Charlie one of the most popular unisex names around today. The name Charlie, for females, has been jumping up the charts since it reappeared, after a 50-year hibernation, in 2005.
  8. Clancy
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "red-haired warrior"
    • Description:

      Irish surnames are hot, and this one can successfully cross the line to work for girls, replacing the outdated Casey. And only a dozen girls were named Clancy in the US in one recent year (along with 27 boys), making it one of those rare Irish names that are both accessible and distinctive, classic and cool. Clancy is a winner for either gender.
  9. Claude
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "lame; enclosure"
    • Description:

      Yes, we tend to think of Claude as a male name and Claudia and Claudette as the female, but this ancient clan name is used in France for girls as well as boys, and could make a distinctively chic boy name for girls here too. You may be surprised to know that Claude was in fairly regular use for American girls in the 1880's and nineties, reaching as high as 553 in 1880.
  10. Cleo
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "glory"
    • Description:

      Cleo, one of the few girls' names to boast the cool-yet-lively o ending, is of course short for Cleopatra, the name of one of the most powerful women in history.
  11. Cody
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "helpful, pillow"
    • Description:

      Cody is a once-trendy boys' name occasionally used for girls. The Cody trend has now given way to other nickname-y names such as Rory and Ruby.
  12. Constance
    • Origin:

      English version of Latin Constantia
    • Meaning:

      "steadfastness"
    • Description:

      Constance is one of the more subtle of the virtue baby names, but still has quite a prim and proper image. One impediment to its revival has been the decidedly dated nickname Connie, though modern parents might well opt for using the strong and dignified name in full.
  13. Cypress
    • Origin:

      Nature name
    • Description:

      Lovely entry into the tree name genre, joining Juniper, Oak, and Willow.
  14. Devon
    • Origin:

      English place-name
    • Description:

      This spelling of Devon, as opposed to Devin or Devan, makes it a pretty and popular British place-name, evoking the beautiful county of farmlands and dramatic seascapes and moors in southwest England. A stylish ambi-gender name particularly well used in the early nineties, Devon remains an attractive option--though be aware that at this point in time, it is used more frequently for boys.
  15. Eliot
    • Origin:

      Variation of Elliot
    • Meaning:

      "The Lord is my God"
    • Description:

      Eliot is the sleekest spelling of the original, very occasionally used for girls, perhaps to honor novelist George Eliot.
  16. Ember
    • Origin:

      French variation of Amber
    • Description:

      Unlike Amber, which is in decline, this name still has a bit of a glow left -- though confusions between the two will inevitably arise.
  17. Emerson
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "son of Emery"
    • Description:

      The combination of Emily and Emma's popularity -- and the fact that Desperate Housewives star Teri Hatcher's daughter is named Emerson -- have put this formerly strictly boys’ name, embodying the gravitas of Ralph Waldo Emerson, in the limelight for girls.
  18. Evelyn
    • Origin:

      English from French and German
    • Meaning:

      "desired; or water, island"
    • Description:

      After decades of disuse, soft and feminine Evelyn has returned to the baby name stage in a huge way. It reached the Top 10 for the first time in 2017. Evelyn has now surpassed its former heights, joining a legion of contemporary little Evas, Avas, Eves, Evies, and Evelines.
  19. Fifer
    • Origin:

      Scottish occupational name
    • Meaning:

      "piper"
    • Description:

      Fifer is a musical name that fits in seamlessly with the likes of Harper and Piper, but is much more unusual. It's also a Scottish demonym, referring to an inhabitant of the historic Scottish county of Fife.
  20. Gretchen
    • Origin:

      German, diminutive of Margarethe
    • Meaning:

      "pearl"
    • Description:

      Like Greta, Gretchen is a German Margaret diminutive that has become an American quasi-classic, though not much used today, having dropped off the list in 2009. She was at her high point in the 1970s, making it into the top 200.