The experts at Nameberry shared their popular name predictions for next year.
As we near the end of 2019, many baby name experts are looking back at the choices that were popular among parents this year. But the folks at Nameberry are also looking forward and examining the baby name trends likely to make a splash in 2020.
The popular name website’s editors compiled a list of top baby name predictions for 2020 based on the picks that “saw the biggest increase in interest” from Nameberry visitors in 2019 compared to 2018.
“Our top baby names are a radical departure from the official national list, which suffers from a considerable time lag,” wrote Nameberry co-founder and CEO Pamela Redmond. “We won’t know which names were really used most often for babies in 2020 until May of 2021. The names here offer baby namers a heads up on trends and specific names destined to get more popular in 2020 and beyond.”
Below, find Nameberry’s list of hot baby name predictions for 2020 and Redmond’s explanations for each pick.
- Adah ― All girl names starting with the letters and sound Ad have been rising quickly in recent years, including Ada and Adele, Adelaide and all spellings of Adeline. Adah, a biblical name pronounced AH-dah, is a fresh choice with deep roots.
- Reese ― Actress Reese Witherspoon had a highly visible year in 2019, between “Big Little Lies” and her book club. Now her name is poised to take off a la Scarlett (Johansson) and Adele. Reese is the phonetic spelling of the unisex Welsh name meaning ardor.
- Mika ― Journalist Mika Brzezinski undoubtedly had some influence on the popularization of her name, pronounced mee-ka, but it’s also a new Michael feminization, taking over from the now-flagging Mikayla and cousins.
- Paisley ― Paisley is one of those names that morphed quickly from fascinating and fresh to super-trendy, rising in the official list to No. 52 in just a bit over a decade. But, according to our data, the Scottish Paisley is only getting hotter.
- Amina ―Amina is an Arabic name with Quranic significance (she was the mother of the Prophet Muhammad) and international appeal.
- Teagan ―The Irish and Welsh Teagan is one of those names that is technically unisex but is used far more often for one gender, in this case over 90% girls. The name has deeper roots than you might imagine ― there was a Welsh St. Tegan ― and takes over for ’90s favorites Megan and Reagan.
- Nova ―Nova is one of those, well, nouveau names that’s enjoyed a meteoric rise. Closing in on the Top 50 on the official charts, Nova could soon join Luna as a celestial name at the top of the popularity lists.
- Aura ―Aura may be the least-used name among our top girl names of 2020 – only 120 baby girls were named Aura in the U.S. in 2018, where it still lies outside the Top 1,000. But it’s a natural successor to Aria and Arya, carries a stylish spiritual feel and is also popular with Spanish-speaking parents.
- Pearl ―Gently old-fashioned Pearl is a granny name turned modern superstar. Pearl was a Top 100 name from the time the Social Security Popular Names count started in 1880 through the mid-1920s, when it started a long decline. But in the past decade, it’s come back in a major way.
- Billie ―Teen singing sensation Billie Eilish has done for this name what Billie Holiday could not: made it a modern star. Billie hit its high point in the U.S. charts in 1929 and 1930, when it was in the Top 100, which, according to the Hundred Year Rule, makes it destined for widespread popularity again in the next decade.
- Austin ―This Texas city name is poised to climb again now that the memory of Austin Powers has faded. You can also see it as a feminist literary name, a tribute to author Jane Austen.
- Alva ―Every American schoolchild knows this as the middle name of the great inventor Thomas Edison, whose surname has also become popular. With Alma and Alba now stylish for girls, Alva could gain visibility for boys.
- Acacius ―This ancient name carries the trendy “s” ending and a botanical meaning, a style winner on three counts.
- Tate ―Norse surname Tate, which means cheerful, is theoretically unisex but used 95% of the time for boys.
- Diego ―Diego, which you’d be forgiven for not knowing was the Spanish form of James, is one of the hottest Latinx names for boys in the U.S.
- Easton ―Easton, technically a place name literally meaning east town, is preppier and more popular than the cowboyish Weston.
- Lucius ―Lucius can’t help being a luscious name, one of the male forms of the ancient Roman clan name meaning light. While Lucy, Lucia, and Lucian are all rising on popularity lists, Lucius has yet to hit the U.S. Top 1,000.
- Cash ―Cash is a multi-dimensional name, theoretically a short form for the stylish ancient names Cassius or Cassian, a tribute to Johnny Cash or a straight-out ode to money.
- Ash ―Ash is a short form of the popular biblical Asher, which means happy, and might also be considered a tree name. It still stands outside the Top 1,000.
- Luca ―Luca is a pan-European favorite that’s receiving an enthusiastic welcome from American parents. Related to Lucas and Luke rather than the Lucius family, it’s set to break into the boys’ Top 100.
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