Some parents hope to give their baby girls a hard-wearing and dependable name. Others opt for originality and never before seen creations with unusual spelling and different name combinations. Celebrities definitely influence name trends, perhaps now more than ever. With so much information at our fingertips in an instant and the innumerable global connections, parents have more choices than ever before and often feel freer than ever to choose a name that uniquely suits their daughter.
A few millennia ago, Roman parents usually gave their daughters the feminine form of the father’s name, even if they had more than one daughter! Imagine if parents were bound by custom to name their daughters Julia One, Julia Two, and Julia Three. Thankfully parents are unafraid to seek out names that have special meaning. Inspiration can come from anywhere, and a number of factors are influencing how parents think about names in 2018.
Even the way in which new parents approach and think about gender constructs has had a marked effect on how parents think about names. Many no longer reject outright a name choice as purely for a boy or a girl. Especially intriguing is how parents are choosing to honor familial names in surprising and often delightful ways. Here are 20 Baby Girl Names That Are Going Viral Right Now.
20 ‘Stormi’ Weather
Stormi Webster arrived in February after months of speculation to mom Kylie Jenner and dad Travis Scott. The Internet responded to the baby’s name with decidedly mixed reviews. While many fans knew Webster was a reference to dad’s birth name of Jacques Webster, Twitter, in particular, exploded with a range of approbation, bad puns, and not a little confusion over the choice of Stormi, according to People Magazine.
Without a doubt, this name is still trending months after Kylie made her bombshell announcement. We are apparently still processing how we feel about this. On Instagram, a quick search shows the hashtag #stormiwebster has been used over 115,000 times since her birth in February of this year.
19 Reinventing 'Emersyn'
By the late ‘90s, Emerson as a first name had fallen out of favor as an old-fashioned name for boys and was practically unheard of for girls. But beginning in the mid-2000s, this intellectual name experienced an explosion in popularity for both boys and girls. Now it seems that the alternative spelling of Emersyn might be the next evolution, as it has skyrocketed up the girl baby name charts this year on Baby Center, while the traditionally-spelled Emerson has fallen back slightly. With its literary ties and fresh new spelling, Emersyn is a name of which any hipster might approve.
18 'Stevie' Music To My Ears
Many celebrity babies arrive with much fanfare after a long and well-documented pregnancy, but not Brooklyn Decker and Andy Roddick’s new daughter. Us Magazine reported that baby Stevie was actually born in 2017, although it wasn’t revealed publicly until months later. Despite the quiet reveal, the name Stevie has increased dramatically in popularity for baby girls this year, according to Baby Center, with no signs of slowing down in the second half of 2018.
Mama Brooklyn reported at the time that she and hubby chose a family name together, but Stevie also calls to mind the legendary artist Stevie Nicks, and we think that’s great company to be in.
17 'Sophia' Means Wisdom
Charging almost to the top of the baby name lists this year, even past celebrity creations, Sophia shows no signs of falling out of favor. The reasons why parents are continuing to approve of this simple name are more varied than the spellings and nicknames. And Romper says this isn’t just one of the most viral name choices in the US; Sophia is at the top in at least seven other countries, not counting all the other spelling options that parents have thought up. With its classical Greek origin, Sophia has been a ‘wise’ choice for parents for years who often associate the name not only with intelligence but also with a feisty nature.
16 Traditional 'Emma'
Often neck and neck with the extremely popular name Sophia, Emma continues to be a baby name favorite. Once a quaint choice more popular as a nickname for other names like Amelia or Emily, Emma has been a top five choice for over 15 years in the U.S., according to the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Many name surveys are ranking Emma as the top choice for 2018 as well. Famous actresses, such as Emma Watson and Emma Roberts could be inspiring a whole new batch of babies named Emma. Parents also may feel that the name is not only simple but feminine and grows well with the baby girl into womanhood.
15 No 'Kulture' Klash
Kulture Kiari Cephus was born July 11, and fans immediately wondered if ‘Kulture’ was a reference to dad Offset’s albums Culture and Culture II. Billboard reports that Cardi B did admit that dad picked the name for their new baby girl, but that it wasn’t a direct reference to his music.
“Anything else woulda been basic,” she tweeted. Judging by the reactions, social media followers seem to approve of the unique name with the novel spelling. And while the idea of changing a letter to create a different visual impression of a name is hardly new, Cardi B and Offset may have just created one of the most popular baby names of 2018.
14 'Minnie' Me
Once used as a diminutive for names such as Amelia, Maryam, or even Wilhelmina, Minnie is a sweet variation that will continue to trend this year as a full name all on its own. Insider revealed, Jack Osbourne and wife Lisa named their newest family member, born this year, Minnie Theodora. Other, more well-known namesakes include Minnie the Mouse and Minnie Driver.
Even though the last time Minnie was a top baby name was before 1900, one of the hottest trends for baby girl names in 2018 hearkens back to old-fashioned names that many—says the Huffington Post—fondly and nostalgically associate with grand- and great-grandparents.
13 'Poppy' Power
Floral names have always been a gold mine for baby girls, and parents are looking for a new twist on an old standby source. Poppy combines the Victorian tradition of a floral name with a bright and fun flower that gives the baby name a bit of a hipster flair.
Celebrities—as per Cosmopolitan—have obviously fallen in love with Poppy in recent years, and as they’ve embraced the colorful moniker, so have non-famous parents, pushing the name Poppy up into the top 75 names for girls this year. British Baby Names shows Poppy is also trending in the UK recently. Scotland loves the baby name Poppy, where it ranks 29th.
12 Breaking 'Story'
Aaron Paul of Breaking Bad and his wife Lauren welcomed their first baby and The Sun says they named her Story Annabelle Paul. While Story isn’t generally thought of as a baby name for boys or girls, celebrity babies certainly influence trends, and Story Annabelle Paul is a whimsical gem of a name that will surely catch on with parents looking for a fresh take on the name selection process.
Unusual names like Story don’t carry the same associations that parents make with more popular names like Sophia. We expect Story, and similar poetic choices, to go from unknown to viral this year as parents look for new name inspiration.
11 Southern Style 'JaylaBelle'
Jaylynn and Jayden are both popular names on Mom365, but an emerging option this year is the sweetened Southern-inspired version, JaylaBelle. Jayla is a similar version of these names, adapted from the boy name Jay, and has been around with a modest ranking for quite some time.
Adding a single syllable name like Belle that evokes beauty is a sure winner to breathe new alliterative life into an already adorable baby name. While no celebrities have chosen JaylaBelle yet, this dark horse of a name could be the fresh take on a combination of familiar names that parents might just fall in love with.
10 Little Birdie 'Wren'
Names inspired by animals and the natural world are definitely increasing in popularity lately, and Wren is another example of this viral trend. Although Wren is a choice that parents feel can fit either a baby boy or baby girl, we think that Wren is a lovely yet appealing name.
Most often a reference to the tiny brown songbird, the British name Wren has flown under the radar despite its meteoric rise in popularity for baby girls in the U.S. in the last five years, according to The Bump. Following the trend of reviving old-fashioned names, parents are also recalling long-lost relatives and ancestors who once carried the appellation.
9 'George' For Girls
Classical names are reliable choices for babies, but a surprise standout to go viral as a crossover girl’s name in 2018 is George. Many parents are choosing to honor family members with far less regard for classic gender division than in the past. Insider detailed that Jeffrey Dean Morgan of The Walking Dead and wife Hilarie Burton of One Tree Hill christened their long-awaited baby girl George Alexandria.
This combination of traditional English names given to a baby girl is refreshing and so elegant it‘s sure to inspire other new parents on the lookout for a radical take on a traditional choice.
Not so long ago, Beyoncé and Jay-Z shook the baby name world with the arrival of Blue Ivy. A popular color alternative that is currently gaining momentum with new parents is the name Violet, which does double duty as a color name and a delicate, vivid purple flower. Violet is yet another Gilded Age name that is experiencing a modern revival with both Gen X and Millennial generations.
More than one celebrity has fallen in love with the Victorian favorite Violet, according to NameBerry, including Christina Milian, Dave Grohl, and Poppy Montgomery, as well as the power couple Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner.
7 'Marvel'-ous Baby
Even celebrities can be super fans! Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz and girlfriend Meagan Camper chose Marvel Jane for their new arrival. Insider reminded fans that Pete Wentz has a track record for creative baby names, but Twitter couldn’t show enough love for this tribute. Superheroes are popular these days with the roaring success of the Marvel Universe characters and this celebrity couple are unapologetic fans. Wentz and Camper made no bones about the fact that their daughter’s name was inspired by Marvel Comics, but Marvel also means ‘to wonder at’, and that is a lovely way to honor a new baby girl.
6 'Dream' A Little Dream
Another Kardashian making baby name waves is brother Rob. He and Blac Chyna are the parents of Dream Renée. Although born back in 2016, Dream’s gentle name was met mostly with approval—according to W Magazine—even from parents who aren’t especially fans of the Kardashian franchise.
Even though the name Dream for baby girls has never broken the top 1000 names, expect that to change as the Kardashian and Jenner scions continue to give us incredibly creative baby names. It’s not hard to imagine that the inspiration for a name like Dream stems from a baby being a dream come true for many parents, so this name is going to keep climbing the charts.
5 Elegant, 'Gianna'
Gianna is the shortened version of Giovanna, and the Italian spelling is spiking in popularity recently even amongst non-Italian U.S. folks. Celebrity Baby Scoop revealed, Karla Souza from the TV show How To Get Away With Murder and husband Marshall Trenkmann revealed her new baby daughter Gianna in April 2018, shocking and delighting fans.
While Gianna is already a common girl’s name in Italy, their native names are increasingly appealing to parents in the U.S. and Oh Baby Names shows Gianna currently cracks the top 100 for baby girls. Even though Gianna is originally the diminutive of Giovanna, many in the states continue to increasingly favor the shorter name over all other strikingly Italian names.
4 'Freya’s' HeyDay
All Hail baby girl Freya! Originally the namesake of the Norse goddess Freyja, this top 200 baby name is going to make a strong comeback in 2018. While Freya has enjoyed a steady rise in the last five years as a baby girl name choice, recent feminist movements like #timesup and #metoo have sparked a renewed interest in powerful female characters and deities.
Oh Baby Names says Freya is far more popular in the U.K. than in the U.S., breaking into the top 20 of baby names. Freya is a powerful Scandinavian figure who represents beauty and self-liberation, and U.S. parents are soon going to turn more and more to inspiring goddess names as they seek to give their daughters strong starts in the world.
3 'Frida' The Artist
Brigitte Nielsen and husband Mattia Dessi may or may not have been inspired by famed Mexican folk artist Frida Kahlo when they named their newborn daughter this year, according to People Magazine. Generally, more popular in European countries in the past, Frida is climbing the charts in the U.S. as women continue to discover and appreciate Frida Kahlo.
Whenever celebrities choose a name it can often produce a spike in popularity too--less than two years ago Frida hadn’t crossed the top 1000 names on Baby Center. This year names that are either genuinely older or somehow evoke the past are trending and Frida is definitely making a niche in this collection of baby girl names.
2 'Charlotte', Fit For A Future Leader
Back in 2015, it was announced that Prince William and wife Kate welcomed baby Charlotte, and this is another baby girl name which will continue to win over parents in the name game in 2018 and beyond. While the notable family undoubtedly honored tradition and family with the name Charlotte, it also fits in with the larger trend especially in the U.S. of the Victorian name revival that continues to influence name choices.
The recent marriage of younger brother Harry to U.S. citizen Megan Markle sparked renewed interest in the leading family for people in the states. Charlotte continues to increase in popularity.
1 'True' Or False
Khloé Kardashian welcomed baby daughter True into the world in April of this year, amid a swirl of rumors, according to People Magazine. Many were unsure how they felt about the name, but it turns out that True is a family name and has special meaning to Grandma Kris. Similar to True, Insider reported that Tom Hopper of I Feel Pretty and wife Laura welcomed their daughter, named Truly Rose.
Although the name True and variations of that name have slowly risen in popularity, the Kardashians as a group have a habit of going viral, and their unique baby names are no exception. True is sure to show up on birth certificates all over the U.S. during the second half of 2018.
References: Instagram, People Magazine, Billboard, Baby Center, Us Magazine, Romper, Social Security Administration, Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, British Baby Names, The Sun, Mom365, The Bump, Insider, NameBerry, Insider, W Magazine, Celebrity Baby Scoop, Oh Baby Names, Oh Baby Names, People Magazine, Baby Center, Royal.UK, People Magazine, Insider