Naming a baby can be a challenging task. Having looked forward to this exciting moment for nine long months, parents suddenly find themselves having to provide a suitable name for their precious bundle of joy. Will it be smart, fun, beautiful or sassy? What should it say about the child? Should the name be traditional or reflect a well-used family name? Should it be a bit unusual, daring or rare?
There are so many names around and let’s not forget that originally way back in time, someone must have made them up at some point. Whether they are based on a person’s location, employment or physical features, names originally meant something to someone. So why not keep up that tradition now and create a new name, or reuse one that has been virtually forgotten in the annals of time?
Popular names come and go like fashion and trends. There are endless lists of names that were popular in every decade that future moms could use for inspiration. But what will be popular in the next decade? We’ve taken a look into the future and come up with a forecast of popular names for the 2020s.
This beautiful girls’ name has several definitions. In the UK and USA, it is the feminine version of the Hebrew name David and means ‘dearly beloved’. In Spanish, however, it means ‘life’ and is a great alternative to ‘Vita’ or ‘Viva’ and even ‘Videtta’.
Chosen by celebrities such as Michael Bublé and Mattew McConaughey, this name is on the rise in the popularity tables.
Having peaked in the 1890’s Vida had all but disappeared by the 1940s, but has now climbed its way back up to number 859 in the popularity charts.
It is pronounced as either VY-da or VEE-da and is a great name for an energetic and life-loving little girl.
Here is another lovely name for a little girl that is slowly but surely making a comeback. At the start of the 1880s around 92 babies per million were given this name, which means ‘God is my judge.' In the 1950s, it fell to only 4 per million.
Nelly is also short for Helen, which means ‘shining light’ or ‘most beautiful woman’.
The same way fashion always comes back, so is this name making a come back. It's now back to up to being the number 1,008th most popular girl’s name. If it continues with this rise there will be Nellies everywhere in 10 years’ time!
Currently, at number 373 in the popularity charts, Frank could be labeled as ‘an old man’s name’. Well used in the early 20th century, Frank fell out of favor but is set to make a comeback along with its contemporaries Jack, Harry, and Thomas.
Short for Francis or Franklin, this boys’ name means ‘freeman’ and comes from the French language.
If you love these names but have a girl, then happily you can change some spellings to Frances, Franklyn, and Frankie and still have a ‘freewoman’. Sheknows.com lists a huge number of personality traits for Frank including optimism, energy, intelligence, vision, and versatility. Frank is keen to experience change, adventure, and excitement, avoiding being restricted by rules and conventions.
The Kaiser Chiefs may have helped Ruby’s popularity when they famously sang about her in 2007, but this name has yet to reach the same heights since the turn of the twentieth century. In 1911, over 8000 babies per million were given this beautiful jewel name, yet by the 70’s it was down to the 400’s.
However, Ruby is one to watch. With Victorian jewel names such as Amber, Jade, and Pearl coming back into fashion, Ruby is creeping up on us again.
Meaning ‘red’, Ruby suggests something shiny and preciou. Best of all, it is no longer considered a name for the older generation.
This cute and girly name has leaped over 4oo places up to position 2075 in the popularity charts, according to Babycenter.com. If it continues its revival at this rate, it is sure to be back and as popular as it was in the 1950s. A shortened form of Elizabeth, it means either ‘oath of God’, or ‘God is satisfaction.
It also has origins in the Hebrew language, being a diminutive of Elisheba, Bethia (daughter of God) or even Bethany, which is a village near Jerusalem. Variations on this name include Betty, Betts, Betsie, Betsey, Bets, and Betsi, so parents have a few ways of making their child a little more unique.
This beautiful Greek name has the simple meaning of ‘order’. Yes, Cosima lives by the motto of ‘a place for everything and everything in its place’. According to Sheknows.com, girls with this name strive for harmony and balance in their lives.
Responding well to beauty, they enjoy the quiet and possess a need to learn. Pronounced ‘KO-see-mah’, this is the feminine version of Cosmo and is currently at number 464 on Nameberry.com’s rankings. Nigella Lawson, Claudia Schiffer and Sofia Coppola have all used this name for their children, so it is only going to become more popular as these children enter the limelight with their super-famous parents.
Edward is a stylish and very old name for your little boy. Dating back to Anglo-Saxon times, the name means ‘guardian’ from the old English name Eadweard, which also means rich, happy, or guardian. In Germany it is a properly masculine name, translating as ‘strong as a boar’.
Edward has always been present, never really disappearing from popular name lists, although it has varying levels of usage around the world. According to Nameberry.com, it is 169th in the US but 23rd in England on the most popular lists. In Germany, it is down at 446 but in Australia it is 48th. This website has even predicted that it will be 193rd in 2028.
Interestingly, the only census data with this gorgeous girls’ name seems to come from the 1920s, when it languished at around the 5000th most popular name. This unusual name then disappeared for almost 100 years only to pop up again thanks to Sam Taylor-Wood and her actor husband, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who recently named their daughter Wylda Rae. Whether it is pronounced ‘wilder’ or wi-lda (rhymes with Hilda) is up to the parents.
Translating as ‘to strive’, it’s a lovely rare name which we think parents are going to love in the coming decade.
Watch this space for a generation of Wyldas to arrive.
Short for the much more formal Archibald, Archie is a name that transitions well from babyhood to adulthood.
Archibald was introduced to England and Scotland during the Norman conquest, having originated in Germany. The Scottish interpreted the 'bald' to refer to the shaven head of a monk, whilst the whole name means ‘true and bold’.
According to Sheknows.com, boys with this name are competent, practical, and often obtain great power and wealth. They are able to achieve material success but sometimes forget to work on their personal lives. If you prefer a more unique version you could try out Archy, Archey or even just Arch.
Literally meaning ‘friend’, this boys’ name has only recently become popular as an actual given name. Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver recently named his fourth child ‘Buddy Bear Maurice’ and is one of the first to use it in an official capacity rather than a nickname.
Even Buddy Holly, the famous rock ‘n’ roll star, was actually christened ‘Charles’. Most popular in the 1930s, Buddy is now more common as a dog name than for little boys, but we think it’s a cute name that can easily become ‘Bud’ when your little Buddy grows up.
Numerology tells us that Buddy is often a creative and expressive person who enjoys acting and singing.
Sonny is another nickname that is now being used as a given name. Meaning ‘son’, there are various versions that you could experiment with including Sunny, Sonney, Sonnie and Sunnie.
Sonny is a name that has been waiting patiently for its moment to shine. It has been in the US Top 1000 list every year since 1927, reaching a peak in 1975 when it hit Number 428.
Currently, it is down at number 777, but with parents increasingly looking for a more unusual and unique name, Sonny is a name that will be all the rage in a decade’s time. Sheknows.com tells us that Sonny has ‘a deep inner desire for a stable, loving family or community, and a need to work with others and to be appreciated’.
Whilst you may think that this is just another great location name for your child, this name actually has a deeper meaning. It's one of those names that is either going to be hit or miss with some folks because of the reference to the country.
For girls, this name is currently the 974th most popular name on Nameberry.com’s list, but it didn’t even rank for boys until 2010 when hip-hop recording artist Swizz Beats and singer Alicia Keys named their son Egypt Dauode Dean. Now that Egypt has made an appearance in celeb land we are sure it’s on the rise.
From the Latin meaning ‘star’, Stella was hugely popular in the late 1800s and its popularity didn’t start to decline until the 1930s. After taking a serious dive in the 1980s, Stella is now back on top along with other sky based names such as Celeste, Angel, Heaven, and Skye.
Not only does Nameberry.com has this name on the 49th spot, but they also predict that by 2028 it will have risen again to number 29. Girls with this name strive for harmony and balance in their lives. They love to be surrounded by beauty, family, and community and enjoy being appreciated for their efforts.
The Victorians loved ‘virtue’ names, and now, 100 years later, they are starting to make a comeback.
Grace, along with Patience, Honour, Mercy, Charity, and Faith are coming back into fashion and are set to gain in popularity over the next decade.
Whilst it is currently on Nameberry.com’s list at number 21, it also ranks highly in many other areas of the world such as Northern Ireland, Ireland, England and Wales, Australia, Scotland, and Canada. Other variations include Engracia, Graziella or Gracie.
This ancient Scandinavian name evokes thoughts of strong Viking warriors and hard-working Norsemen. However, meaning ‘father of peace’, boys with this name actually seek out a stable, loving family or community.
They appreciate harmony and balance and work well with others. Axel is the Scandinavian form of the Biblical name ‘Absalom’, who was a son of King David. The name entered the top names lists directly after Axl Rose's band first started getting popular. Alternative spellings include Axell, Axl, Axe, Aksel and even Axelle for the girls.
Abel has seen a huge increase in usage over the last ten years, a successful streak after a century of little use at all. Currently, at number 147, it is joining its fellow Biblical names such as Elijah, Jonah, Noah and Ezra in a bit of a revival. However, although it’s a good sounding name for any little boy, it doesn’t have a great meaning or backstory. The name relates to vanity, breath, and vapor. We predict that it’s on the rise and back in fashion, which may also be as a result of SoA.
Cristiano is the Latin and Spanish word for ‘Christian’, literally meaning ‘follower of Christ’. If you are not particularly religious this may not be the name for your child. However, if you are a huge football fan, you may want to use it in tribute to the great Ronaldo!
According to Nameberry.com, Cristiano is ranked at number 853, which means it has moved up around 5000 places in the last 20 years. Sheknows.com tells us that although Cristiano can be quick-tempered, boys with this name are generally ‘passionate, compassionate, intuitive, romantic, and have magnetic personalities’.
This popular boys’ name is definitely heading for the number one spot. Meaning ‘God is gracious,’ it can also be a surname ‘son of Jack’. This is a name that has been consistently popular for years. There are just the right amount of Jacksons running around although in the last 20 years the name has gained popularity and it is now the 25th most popular boy’s name. Other versions such as Jaxon and Jaxson have evolved by parents wishing to be a little different. And with Justin Bieber’s younger half-brother recently making an appearance on the red carpet, we think Jaxon is the spelling that will come out tops.
Heavenly is a classic 60’s hippy name, born in the era of love and freedom. Having a name associated with all that is good and pure is a big ask for any little girl, but she is sure to stand out from the crowd. In the 1980s this beautiful name was right down at number 7000 in the popularity charts but she has climbed up to reach her current position of 919th most popular girls’ name.
If you are not sure about such a divine name, you could use the increasingly popular ‘reverse it’ technique and go for Nevaeh instead, a new name that is simply ‘Heaven’ backwards.
More common as a surname, Kingston has recently gained ground as a gender-neutral given name too. Meaning ‘from the king's village or estate’, Kingston has a regal feel to it which is great for any little boy or girl but grows well into adulthood too. Kington is currently the 103rd most popular name for children, but its use has increased massively in the last 10 years.
Fast forward another decade and Kingston will be much nearer the top of the pile. According to Sheknows.com people with this name are courageous and creative leaders with powerful personalities. Efficient and determined, Kingston will get the job done!