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three babies with nametags

Baby Names - Hottest Naming Trends

What’s hot and new this year for baby names? If you’re looking to find that perfect up-to-date moniker for Baby-to-Be, we’ve got the best resource for you. Take a look at the hottest and most popular names for baby boys and girls.

From celebrity baby names to trendy names from popular literature — this past year has seen a variety of fun and interesting baby name trends. We have the latest and greatest information on baby names from both the Social Security Administration’s annual baby name research findings, and from baby name expert Jennifer Moss, the founder and CEO of www.babynames.com and author of “The One-in-a-Million Baby Name Book.”

Lasting Names from Literature

“People are using more names from fiction,” says Moss. Some popular examples that she points out are:

  • Hazel:
    Named for the literary (and now movie character) Hazel Grace Lancaster from John Green’s “The Fault in Our Stars.”
  • Arya:
    Arya Stark, a popular character created by author George R.R. Martin in his “Game of Thrones” book and TV series.
  • Khaleesi:
    This moniker refers not to a name, but to a title of another popular character from “Game of Thrones.” Khaleesi is a Dothraki title, which the character Daenerys Targaryen (also known as “The Mother of Dragons”) takes for her own.

Last Names as First Names

Moss adds that even surnames are finding their way into popular new baby name lists:

  • Harrison:
    A common surname of English origin.
  • Mason:
    From Irish and English origin, Mason is an occupational surname referring to a craftsman specializing in stonemasonry.
  • Taylor:
    Another name of English origin, Taylor is also an occupational surname. From the old French tailleur (“cutter”), the name refers to someone who worked as a tailor.

Famous Folks

Each year, the Social Security Administration (SSA) shares some interesting facts and findings from their most recent tally of the top 1,000 baby names. Findings often reveal the effect of pop culture and current events.

Two of the biggest jumps came from TV and sports.

  • Aranza rose the most spots on the girls’ side to number 607. The telenovela “Por Siempre Mi Amor” aired on Univision from 2013 to 2015. The show featured a young lead character named Aranza, and likely influenced the baby name trend this year.
  • Bode jumped ahead to 783 in 2014. This may be attributed to Olympic alpine skier Bode Miller, who won his sixth medal last year.

What's Old is New Again

According to the SSA, several old names have found their way back into the top 10 baby name lists:

  • James is a former No. 1 from the 1940s and 1950s.
  • And the lovely name Charlotte is enjoying her first time in the top 10 girls names this year. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were right on trend with naming their baby girl, Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte.

Looking Ahead

“Baby name trends are changing faster,” says Moss. “It used to be that trends lasted 10 to 15 years, now the top 10 names are changing every two to three years and that is because we now have access to the Internet.”
Moss adds that, “Parents tend to avoid names that are too popular, and now we can see trending names in real time.”
Nobody can predict future of baby names with certainty — but we’re looking forward to more and more fun and creative names in coming years.

Photo: ThinkstockPhotos.com

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