As any parent will tell you, the last thing a new mom or dad wants to do is give their newborn child a moniker that is either outdated, out of style, or so old that people will second-guess his or her age. After all, baby gear and clothes aren’t the only things that come and go with the trends each year as popular boy and girl names either climb or drop off the all-important baby name list each year, too.
With that being said, it’s difficult to keep up with what’s in and what’s not. Let’s be honest: 2018 was a huge year when it came to baby names. A lot of parents are leaning towards more classic names and are no longer giving their children names that are either unique, creative or simply difficult to spell (every school teacher on both sides of the pond are thankful for this).
And while no one knows what is really in store for the new year, one thing is for certain: we already know what baby names parents are already over. Take a look at our list below of 12 baby boy names and 13 baby girl names that a lot of parents are crossing off their list.
Sophia is a timeless name, but it’s also a name that has been overused in recent years. As a matter of fact, you can go into several different Kindergarten classes and find at least one or two Sophia’s in each one. Yes, that’s just how popular the name has become in recent years. With that being said, parents are simply over the name and all the different spelling variations, too. It doesn’t matter if you name your daughter Sophia with an ‘f’ or a ‘ph’ this name is fast sliding off the baby name chart. Parents are looking for a new name in it’s place.
As we all know, choosing a baby name can be tricky business. You want to pick a name that will not only last throughout the years, but one that will make your child happy later on in his or her life, too. And while Olivia sounds like a name that is perfect for a little girl in pre-school, a teen who is applying for college scholarships or a young woman who is making her mark in this world, it’s a name that has been overused in the last ten years, too. Let’s face it, everyone knows at least one Olivia in toddler social circles, right?
Emma is an absolutely beautiful name and one that has been on the baby name charts for well over two decades now. It’s a very feminine name that is derived from the Germanic word “Ermen” which means universal. Emma is also used as a diminutive of Emmeline, Amelia or any other name beginning with “Em” (with the exception of Eminem, of course). With that being said, there are so many Emma’s in the world now that we just can’t keep up with them. It seems like there is at least one Emma from every class that has a birthday party every other week.
Ava is another beautiful name but just like Emma, it’s been overused in recent years. The name is a variation of Eve and in Latin, it means “avis” which translates to “bird.” Believe it or not, Ava has been around as a name for decades as it was popularized as a girls’ name thanks to the actress Ava Gardner. However, it may be time to give it a rest. Ava is a lovely name, but she’s also someone who can grow up to be a little catty, if not someone who always expects attention. We are sure that there are plenty of parents who would agree with us.
It doesn’t matter if you call your daughter Isa, Bella or simply Isabella, we all know at least one in our children’s social circles, right? The name is a variation of Isabel, and an older variation of Elizabeth, which means “devoted to God” in Hebrew. It’s a name that is also hugely popular in England, France, Portugal, and Hungary as there have been dozens of royal Isabelle and Isabella’s throughout history. The name was also popularized by Italian actress Isabella Rossellini and is one that continues to top the baby name charts today. But isn’t it time that we retire the name already?
Some unusual baby names have taken the charts by storm in recent years and have been rising significantly in popularity. Aria is definitely one of them as it was on the top of the chart for 2018. But because so many people have chosen this name for their newborn baby girl, other moms and dads are worried that the pre-school playground is going to be oversaturated with little Aria’s from every corner. As unique as the name is, it’s not very creative if so many other people have chosen it for their kids too, right? Yes, we thought so, too.
Regardless if you are expecting a baby boy or expecting a baby girl, Riley has been on the tip of a lot of tongues for almost a decade. Riley has been a name that a lot of moms and dads have had on the top of their lists for years now. It’s an Old English name that actually means “wood clearing” and is an adaptation of the Irish last name Reilly. And no, if your last name is Reilly, we don’t want you naming your child Riley Reilly. That would just be unnecessary and foolish according to the majority of the world’s population. Let’s leave Reilly as a surname, shall we?
Just like the name Emily in the 1970’s and the 1980’s, Amelia has been widely popular in the last five years or so. And yes, a lot of parents from the US like to choose the name Amelia because it sounds distinctively European while a lot of European parents like the name because it sounds authentic. But because it’s been so widely used in recent memory, we’ve got more Amelia’s on both sides of the pond that we can count. Amelia is a gorgeous name (that we still love), but another that deserves to take a hiatus for at least ten years, right folks?
Mia was hugely popular in the 1970s and the 1980s and has made quite a comeback in recent years. It’s a short version of the name Maria and was actually popularized by actress Mia Farrow (by now we are sure that you’ve caught on to the fact that so many girl’s names have been mainstreamed thanks to the popularity of certain actresses and Hollywood stars over the years). The Latin origins for Mia actually means “mine” or “wished for child.” But let’s face it: Mia sounds like a great name for a little baby girl that was born in the mid-1960’s right? It doesn’t matter if it’s Mia or Miah, the name has definitely run it’s course.
Layla is a name that gets a lot of people excited. Why? Because moms and dads think that it’s a unique and creative name that is probably not as popular as some of the names that we’ve mentioned above. But little do expectant parents know that the name was very widely used during 2018 so much so that it actually cracked the top ten list for baby girl names. Believe it or not, Layla has Egyptian and Arabic origins and means wine, night or dark beauty. So yes, think twice before you really choose on Layla as a name for your baby girl.
Emerson is another gender-neutral name that has been widely used in recent years for both little boys and girls, and especially in the United States. As a matter of fact, Emerson means “powerful” or “brave.” In German the meaning of the name Emerson means Emery’s son; and yes, it is also traditionally a male name, even though many little girls have it, too. And while we still love the name (and wouldn't like to see it drop down on the baby name list), it’s one that has been used over and over and over again. Time to put it in retirement.
Quinn is another baby name that was derived by the Irish surname of O’Quinn, and it’s a gender neutral name that works well for both baby girls and baby boys. It means wisdom, reason and intelligence which means that your kid is guaranteed to grow up to be a wonderful young man or woman. And while we definitely have a soft spot for the name (as there isn’t a Quinn out there that isn’t absolutely adorable, cute, and sweet), it was one of the most used names during 2018. So how about we give this name a little break and revisit it in about five to 10 years?
When it comes to the baby name Delilah, there really is no in between: people either love the name or they absolutely dislike it. The name was first derived from the Hebrew word of Delilah, which actually means delicate. Delilah also has biblical origins in the story of Samson . It is also a name that means “delight” or “flirt,” which makes sense, especially considering it’s historical context. And while a lot of parents are often on the fence about this name, it’s definitely passed its 15 minutes of popularity. Let’s put this name on the back-burner for a few years.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Jackson, Jack, Jackie, or Jacqueline, everyone knows at least one ‘Jack’ in their lives, right? It’s a name that has managed to stay on the top of the baby name chart for decades, if not generations. Your great-grandfather could have been named Jackson, just like your uncle of one of several of your nephews. And because the name is so widely used, some parents think that it’s one that should be left alone for a few years. Actually, let’s make that 20 years. We love all the Jacksons that we see, but having five in your family is four too many.
There are actually new reports that indicate Liam was the most popular boy name in New York City for the year 2018 (with Emma taking the top spot for the girls). As we all know, the Big Apple loves to be one of the most unique, fast and exciting cities in the world. Interestingly enough, the island will be cluttered with little Liams in the coming years as the name has grown immensely in the last few years. With that being said, Liam will be sitting in his Kindergarten class with a few kids named Tzippy, Reizy and Zeus, which are also names that have gained momentum in New York City.
Noah is a Hebrew name that means rest and comfort. But for anyone who has actually tried to put a screaming and crying baby Noah to sleep in the middle of the night, they will tell you a completely different story. As many people can recall, in Biblical times, God chose Noah to build an ark to fill it with food and two of every animal so they can survive the great flood. But there have been so many Noah’s in the last several years, it’s surprising that they haven’t all become Olympic swimmers or zookeepers. We are joking, of course.
Aiden has become a name that has been vastly popular for a very long time. In history, it was actually the name of the Celtic sun god and it means “fiery.” For the longest time, it was traditionally a boys name but in recent years it has also been used as a gender neutral name, too. Some of the best known Aidens in Hollywood and pop culture include actor Aidan Quinn, and one of Carrie Bradshaw’s boyfriends (Aidan). There are also so many different ways that you can spell Aidan, that people (along with teachers, coaches and babysitters) also get very confused.
Just like Aiden, there are so many different ways that you can spell Caden, which makes it another name that is hard to keep up with. In Arabic, “Kadin” actually means “friend” or “companion.” In other words, your little Caden will most likely have his entire second grade class come over for his 8thbirthday party, because that’s just how popular he is. Caden is also an alternation form of an Irish and Scottish surname: McCadden. And if you are feeling inspired to name your children Caden McCadden, we beg of you not to do it. It’s not a good idea.
Grayson is actually a surname but recently, it’s become a very popular gender neutral name (just like so many other baby names that have made our list so far). In Middle English, the name means “son of a steward” or simply a “steward.” According to The Bump, it also means “son of the gray-haired man.” For a lot of parents, they picked out the name simply because it sounds regal. But as a few parents can tell you, Grayson can also spell trouble, especially on the pre-school playground. Right, teachers?
If you have a son that is named Lucas, there’s a very good chance that he’s a handsome, good looking boy. Because let’s face it: there isn’t a Lucas out there that isn’t a cutie, right? The name is actually a form of Luke or Lucius and means “light giving” or “illumination.” Luke is also the author of the third gospel of the New Testament. But just because there are so many gosh darn cuties named Lucas out there, it’s been more than just overused in recent memory. If you love the name Lucas, go for it, but otherwise, skip it for some time.
We are going to say what a lot of people think, but are just too afraid to say out loud: yes, Mason is a trouble maker. The name Mason has become increasingly common for boys so much so that when someone calls out the name, at least three or four little Masons say, “Who, me?” The name was actually first an English occupational surname and has been used since the 12thcentury. In Old French, the name translates to “stone mason.” Yes, it’s been around for THAT long. With that being said, let’s put it back where it belongs: in history.
Oliver is a classic name and yes, many little Olivers do become the smartest kid in their class. It is actually a Norman French name that was initially spelled as Olivier. Throughout the years, the name was altered due to its resemblance to the Latin word “Olivia,” which means “olive tree.” But just like Olivia, we’ve met so many Olivers during our lifetime, that we want to give it the rest that it deserves. Let’s bump it off the popular baby name list for a few years, now shall we? We love the name, but it’s one that has expired for years now.
Elijah is another baby boy name that dates back to historical names. In Hebrew, it’s a name that means ‘Yahweh is God,’ but it’s also the name of an Israelite prophet in the First and Second Books of Kings in the Bible. Although it was traditionally popular as a Jewish boys’ name, many people would agree that it has rocketed in popularity for the last two decades now. Also, Elisha is the female version if Elijah. And while we do like the name, there are less and less parents that are picking it out for their newborn children simply because it’s so overused.
Is Weston the name of a town or is Weston the name of a baby? Well, it depends on who you ask. There can easily be a Weston McWeston living in the town of Weston, Florida, but we advise that you don’t go that far. Believe it or not (and this will sound so obvious that it hurts), Weston actually means “western town in Old English. It can also mean “settlement” or “enclosure” and is one of the mostly used named in the United States. Some people have even used other derivations and spellings including Wesson, Wesley and the unfortunate spelling of Westen.
Last but not least, we’ve got Declan on our list of baby names that have been the most overused names in recent memories. Declan has been around for many decades, mostly because families with Irish origin love the name. It is actually a traditional Irish name meaning “man of prayer” or “full of goodness” (talk about a heavy reputation to upkeep, especially if you are a Declan who often finds himself on the naughty list). The name is often added to the list of the best Irish Boy Names, too. But let’s give Declan some room to breathe, shall we?
Sources: The New York Post, Babble, Scary Mommy, Mom.me, Wikipedia.