Brace Yourself—These are the New "Mom Names"

Jun 20th 2018

Mom names are like mom jeans. We expect them to be built for comfort, not style. While new baby names aim for dramatic flair, mom names provide the steady backdrop. You know, cozy names like Diamond and Tyler.

Not the kind of maternal style you were thinking of? If not, it's time to adjust your thinking to a new generation of mom names.

Diamond and Tyler are just two of the new/old names that define this wave. They were popular a generation ago but have since declined sharply, so you're at least five times as likely to meet a 25-year-old woman than a newborn girl with one of those names.

I've identified 20 of these new mom names that represent their naming era. It was an era of creative spelling and androgyny, styles that are still going strong today. Some of the individual names are still quite popular; Taylor, for instance, ranked #112 in the most recent name stats. But as you can see from this graph, the style heart of the group lies 25 years in the past.

The new mom names have a few "dad" counterparts in names like Dillon, Kody and Devonte. But boys' name trends have historically changed slower than girls, so it's the mom names that are the dominant symbols of '90s style. Below is the full group of 20. Expect to see them in your local PTA soon.


Taylor Swift. Image: Wikimedia Commons

Name 1992 Births      2017 Births
Taylor 14947 2692
Kelsey 11716 780
Kaitlyn 7474 929
Jordan 5365 882
Brittney 5084 72
Briana 4351 676
Ashlee 2010 70
Meagan 1958 47
Ciara 1369 240
Jasmin 1352 235
Diamond           1299 224
Chelsie 1223 28
Tiara 1161 90
Devin 1035 102
Tyler 976 174
Katlyn 944 19
Karissa 898 136
Shayna 661 100
Iesha 580 5
Shelbi 515 14

 

8 Girls' Names Everybody is Wondering About Right Now

Jun 13th 2018

There are the names you put on your baby name list, and then there are the names you wonder about. You hear them and can't help but think: "What kind of name is that? Where does it come from? Do people actually name their kids that?"

All that wondering brings readers to our Namipedia, making the pages for names like Katniss and Django as popular as pages for trendy baby names. We've scoured our stats for the most wondered-about names—names with heavy Namipedia traffic that are rare-to-nonexistent in the baby name realm. Here are some of the girls' names the American public is wondering about right now.

Zazie Beetz. Image: foxmovies.com

(* = appears in the most recent U.S. baby name stats)

Zazie. Actress Zazie Beetz was the breakout star of the Marvel film Deadpool 2. As the superhero Domino she captured attention with her insouciance, her showstopping look, and her name. The name Zazie is a French nickname (sometimes short for Isabelle), but run through a German filter. Beetz was born in Germany, and her parents took her name from the 1960 French film Zazie dans le Métro and pronounced it with a German twist: ZAH-see.

Nymphadora. Even in the exotic naming realm of the Harry Potter books, the name of shapeshifter Nymphadora Tonks stands out. Nymphadora is an old saint's name, from the Greek for bride/nymph + gift. Its resemblance to the word "nymphomania," though, has helped keep parents away, and the Harry Potter character herself preferred to go by her surname Tonks.

Tully. In the 2018 film "Tully," Tully is the name of a female nanny who helps out an overstressed mother. Outside the film, Tully is an occasional male nickname, an Irish and Scottish surname, and a name that was once commonly used to refer to the Roman orator Cicero (Marcus Tullius Cicero). It's rare but familiar, and the movie usage could help it catch on for girls.

Stamatina. Tina has been familiar as a given name for decades, but it started out as a nickname. Most often it was short for Christina, Martina, or Katarina. In the case of comedian Tina Fey, though, Tina comes from Elizabeth Stamatina Fey. Stamatina is a Greek name coming from a root meaning "stop"; Fey was named after her Greek great-grandmother.

Nike. Ah, if it weren't for the swoosh! Nike was a Greek goddess, the personification of victory. The name's appealing roots, simple, spiky sound, and fashionable Grecian -e ending would likely make it a hot baby name today, if not for the sports apparel company. As it is, Nike remains much-researched but seldom-used.

*Nymeria. In the Game of Thrones world, Nymeria is a legendary warrior queen. Her name became a classic in her native land, and is carried into the present in two suitably warrior-like namesakes: whip-wielding rebel Nymeria Sand, and a wolf companion of young swordfighter Arya Stark.

*Cressida. The recent interest in Cressida was sparked by Cressida Bonas, a former girlfriend of Prince Harry who attended his royal wedding. Previously, the name was linked to the Toyota Cressida, a sedan sold from the 1970s-'90s. But before all that, Cressida was steeped in classic literature. Cressida is the medieval English form of Chryseis, a woman of Homer's Iliad, and was immortalized by the Shakespeare play Troilus and Cressida.

Gamora. The green-skinned Guardian of the Galaxy, Gamora is called "the deadliest woman in the whole Galaxy." As embodied by Zoe Saldana in a series of Marvel films, she is also one of the most charismatic. The smoothly sinister sound of Gamora's name, fueled by the "mor" root, is echoed in other super-powered names like Amora the Enchantress.

 

Read More: past girls' and boys' names everyone wonders about

 

Zombies II: The Zombie Girls Rise

Jun 6th 2018


You thought they were dead and buried. But now, they walk among us again! And they're all...girls' names.

"Zombie names" are baby names that once fell so far out of style they became virtually extinct. Previously common, they disappeared from America's top-1000 name lists for more than a generation. They then found themselves revived by contemporary parents on the hunt for fresh ideas.

Unlike ordinary zombies, with their ragged outfits and alarming complexions, baby name zombies are fashion-forward. They're at the extreme end of throwback style, balancing the warmth and familiarity of traditional names with an edge of surprise, and even daring.

Our original zombie name list struck a chord with many parents. Names like Clementine and Magnolia, Theo and Mathias made one reader say, "I had no idea my style was 'zombie'!" Now, three years later, I've scanned the stats for newly reanimated names, and found that they're all on the girls' side.

Blame the gender skew on the parents of past generations. A century ago, parents were conservative in naming their sons. Classic English kingly names still dominated, even as trendy hits rose and fell for girls. That means there just aren't many dormant, suspended-in-time boys' names available to revive.

For some near-zombie-style ideas for both sexes, you can check out our lists of rare old-fashioned names and overlooked timeless names. And for the real reanimated deal, here are the new zombie names for girls.

 

Name   Departed   Reanimated   Current Rank   Years Gone
Florence    1981   2017   980   36
Frankie   1974   2015   844   41
Zelda   1967   2015   649   48
Mavis   1963   2016   806   53
Veda   1960   2015   864   55
Opal   1960   2017   859   57
Ophelia   1958   2015   416   57
Winnie   1957   2017   1000   60
Luella   1955   2017   905   62
Vada   1946   2016   978   70
Emmie   1935   2016   690   81
Belle   1934   2016   808   82
Adaline   1924   2015   180   91