What’s old is new again when it comes to baby names! We’ve tracked the trends and found that many old fashioned baby names are in fact on the rise. Here’s a list of beautiful retro baby girl names that are coming back in 2020. Love them or hate them, you’re going to be seeing a lot more of these vintage names in the near future.
After bottoming out of the charts in the 1990s, stylish yet old-timey Josephine has increased in popularity every year since 2000. It is definitely looking like a cool name choice again as it has now re-entered the top 100. Josie or simply Jo make adorable nicknames.
What could be more 2020 than celebrating talented and powerful women? It seems that today’s moms are inspired by Frida Kahlo, causing a resurgence in the use of Frida in the last five years.
You might still think of it as an old lady name, but Alice has been soaring in popularity since 2002. It is now sitting comfortably in the top 100 at number 71.
Simple yet pretty, Vera has done nothing but rise in the last decade. It is still a relatively unique name choice where it currently stands in the 200s.
Myra was sitting stable around number 900-1000 on the charts for years, until it leapt up to under 500 last year. If it keeps moving at that speed, it will be way up there on the charts by the end of 2020.
This name of Hebrew origin is the diminutive form of Elizabeth, and is currently the most popular it’s ever been at number 131 on the charts. The reason? Likely the insanely popular musical Hamilton, which features Eliza Hamilton as one of the main characters.
Dorothy went from a low of 982 in 2006 to current spot of 586, showing a rapid incline even though it still isn’t popular. Cute nickname Dottie is a major asset for this retro girl name.
Another antique name in the category of “still uncommon, but rapidly rising”, Hattie also rose 500 spots in the last decade.
Beautiful nature name Ivy is on the rise and just broke into that coveted top 100 in 2018. Celebrities across the board have chosen this name, from Jay Z and Beyonce to one of the Duggar daughters!
This could be the year for sweet old-fashioned Iris to break the top 100 most popular baby names after slowly climbing to number 138.
Freya, a gorgeous name of Norse origin, has had perhaps the most steep growth of all the names on this list. Nowhere to be found on the charts a mere 6 years ago, it now takes the 266th spot.
Elegant simplicity is found in Rose, which peaked in popularity right around a century ago. Its use has ebbed and flowed throughout history but is looking hot right now at number 123.
One of the most used names of the uber-trendy El- names is Eleanor, topping the charts at number 32. It is unclear what’s driving this sudden surge of popularity other than the recent obsession with the nickname Ellie.
Hazel is the new modern/antique hybrid name, having risen up on the charts every year since 2000. It sits comfortably now in the 42nd spot and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.
Florence, reappeared on the charts 2017 after not being ranked in prior years. Is its British popularity crossing over the sea? If I come across a baby Flo or Flossie I will be inclined to think yes.
Still looking for more retro names?
Check out this fun feature from Social Security website- you can check out history’s most popular baby names by decade going all the way back to the 1880s! You should be able to find some real hidden gems from history with just a little bit of digging.
Are you looking for a list of top names starting from letter H? Maybe you are looking to complete a sibling set of all H names. Maybe you follow traditional Hindu naming practices where the date of birth requires a name that starts with H. Or, maybe you just really like H names! Whatever the reason, we have ALL the H names for boys right here.
For ease of use, I’ve broken the list into Indian H names and all other (American) boy names starting with H. Each name on the list includes the meaning and origin.
When I was choosing baby names for my kids, I tried hard to avoid giving them a name that is too popular. Many parents prefer unique names so the child won’t be one of several kids in their class with the same name. Jennifers of the 1980s know what I’m talking about!
Whether you are looking for common names to see what names are trending, or want to avoid names that are being used too much, you’ll be interested in the top 100 most popular baby names of this year.
As usual, I recommend looking up any name you’re considering for your child on the social security website. It will show you how popular the name is and whether it’s on the decline or on the rise up the charts.
Some highlights of the lists include:
Liam taking the top spot on the boy charts for the second year in a row (it’s been in the top 3 since 2013)
Emma grabs the top spot for the girls for the FIFTH year in a row (and it’s been in the top 3 since 2003!)
Madison begins its decline, taking a seat outside the top 20 for the first time since 1996
Asher breaks into the top 50 for the first time ever
Do you have a short list of favorite girl names? I’d love to hear them in the comments!
Now, on to the boys!
Most popular boy names
Typically the most popular boy names are filled with lots of historical and traditional names, which this list certainly has. However trends are starting to change in the boy name department with some more modern boy names breaking into the charts.
Do you seek out the most popular names? Or do you avoid them?
I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
And if you’re pregnant, you’ll want to check out the Postpartum Handbook– it has everything new moms want to know that no one prepares you for. Tips for using the bathroom after giving birth, C-section recovery tips, how to speed healing, and much more!
If you’re in the midst of choosing a baby name, you’ll want these easily misspelled names to be on your radar. Whether the spelling is inherently confusing to people, or there are just TOO MANY different spelling options, these names trip people up over and over.
Any name can be misspelled
Before you chime in with “well any name can be misspelled!”, let me just say… I know.
My husband has one of the most common, easily recognized names in the English language. It’s John. People still find ways to misspell it.
Sure, there are Jonathans out there that go by Jon, so that is a forgivable mistake. But then there are people who are just easily confused and spell it “Jhon”. Can’t make this stuff up!
So yes, it is true that ANY name will occasionally get misspelled. That will be true as long as there are people in the world who just can’t spell.
That said, not all names are misspelled with the same frequency.
Some will be spelled wrong on occasion, while others will be spelled wrong more often than they’re spelled right.
Does it really matter if people misspell the name?
Yes and no.
It’s not the end of the world to have to correct your name every time people write it. You get used to it and you move on with your life.
But if you are naming a child, you might be interested in avoiding that inconvenience for them.
Or perhaps you are on the fence about a name, and knowing that it often gets misspelled may steer you in a different direction. That’s where this list may come in handy.
Tips to avoid having your child’s name misspelled
In some cases, it’s unavoidable. People can have your name right in front of them (think Facebook, or email) and STILL misspell it. See above re: some people just can’t spell.
But there are some things you can do when choosing a name that will make these errors less likely.
Choose a name that is known and recognized. You can’t make up a name and then annoyed that people are unsure of how to spell it. If you want to get creative, having to spell it out every time is par for the course.
If you go with a name that has several spellings, choose the most conventional. Sometimes this is up for debate but typically there is one spelling that is far more common than the rest. For example if you like the name Jordan and don’t want it misspelled, go with Jordan and not Jordyn.
Avoid names with tons of spelling options. If a name has ten spelling variations, the chances of it being spelled wrong is going to hover around 90%. Read on to find out which names those are!
Avoid names that don’t sound like they’re spelled. People get really confused by silent letters. Isla is an absolutely beautiful name, but when people hear it they won’t instinctively know to put an “s” in there.
Now, on to the names!
This list of the most misspelled names can be broken into two groups. Names that are misspelled because they are different or difficult to spell, and names that are misspelled because there are many spelling variations.
Frequently Misspelled Names (Hard for people to spell):
Something about that double “a” just really messes with people. You’ll see a lot of “Issac”, which doesn’t actually make sense phonetically.
Again, it’s the string of vowels that make it difficult. There isn’t a common misspelling for it, you just get a lot of “Is….” followed by a blank stare.
A stunningly beautiful girls name, the silent “s” can trip people up. You might see Aila, Iyla, or just get asked repeatedly how to spell it.
This is such a common name, but since its spelling doesn’t exactly reflect its pronunciation it tends to get butchered. Nickolas, Nicholis, and Nikolas may be some mistakes you’ll see. (Some of these are the correct spellings in other languages, which can further complicate the confusion.)
Elijah comes from Hebrew so it has sounds that are somewhat uncommon for English speakers. The spelling makes sense phonetically, but it won’t come naturally to everyone.
Malachi is another Hebrew name that’s a little different for most people because the “chi” is pronounced “kai”. It also has spellings Malachy and Malakai to add to the uncertainty.
This is a tricky one because some people pronounce the X while others say it “Zay-vee-er”. Either way you’re looking at lots of room for error when strangers try to write it.
A super cool uncommon boys name, Joaquin is sure to confuse people who aren’t Spanish speaking. For the record, you say it “wah-KEEN”.
Be honest: the first time you read this name in Harry Potter, you said it wrong.
In fact, I just had to Google how to spell it to make sure I didn’t misspell it in the most misspelled names article!
I get it, it doesn’t look like sheh-VHAN, but that’s what it is. Did you know it’s actually the Irish Gaelic female version of John?
It’s a French name and different than what we’re used to. If you choose Yvonne for your child, recognize that they will always need to spell it out for people.
Most Misspelled Names (Many spelling variations)
Yes, this is my name. And the misspellings I’ve been getting on my Starbucks cups are the inspiration for this post. (Caitland??? Really? Am I my own country now?)
Caitlin arguably has the most spelling variations of any name in the English language.
In fact, I bet I can rattle off 15 spellings without even having to pause: Katelin, Kaitlin, Kaitlyn, Kaitlynn, Katelyn, Katelynn, Kaytlin, Kaytlyn, Kaytelin, Caitlin, Caitlyn, Caitlynn, Catelin, Catelyn, Catelynn, Caytlin, Caytlyn. And that’s not even close to all of them.
Katie has similar issues to its sister name, Katelin (or is it Katelyn?)
It’s a very cute name but the number of possible spellings is a bit daunting. Katie would be the most common, but there’s also the accepted Katy and a host of other creative possibilities: Caitie, Catie, Caty, Kaitie, Kaitee, KT and more.
This one is a longer name with MANY places for people to make mistakes. There are also a host of possible spellings, includng McKenzie, Mackenzy, Mackynzie, McKenzey, Makenzie, etc.
Given the extreme popularity of this name in the early 2000s, you would think it’s one of the easiest names to spell. But all the variations have left people confused and prone to misspelling it. In addition to Aiden and Aidan, you will also find it spelled Aaden, Aden, Aidyn, and Ayden.
Note these variations will hold true for the other -ayden names like Jayden/Jaiden and Kayden/Caiden.
Another very cute name that simply has too many options. Whichever option you choose, people will still try to spell it one of the others ways. Kayleigh, Kailee, Kaley, Kaileigh, Caylee, and Cayley are just some of the possibilities.
When I was a kid, all the Ashleys were spelled “Ashley”, but now you will also see Ashlee, Ashlie, and Ashleigh.
There is definitely no agreement on this one. Carrie, Carey, Karrie, Kerry, and Kari are all popular spellings.
The Welsh girls name Megan has lead to tons of different spellings, making it often misspelled. There is really no way to know if someone is Megan, Meagan, Meghan, Meaghan, or Megann.
Just like its nickname Katie, Katherine is going to confuse people because we’ve all seen so many different versions. Catherine, Kathryn, and Cathryn to name a few.
This trending baby name is growing in popularity, but the spelling variations can be confusing. The most common spelling is Everly, but alternate spellings Everlee and Everleigh are popping up.
It seems like a straightforward boys name, but with three “normal” options, it’s easy to mix up Connor, Conor, and Conner.
Gender neutral names are so in right now, but there is no consensus on whether it should be spelled Payton or Petyon (or even Peighton or Paityn!)
A lovely name that can easily be misspelled, Julianna is alternately spelled Juliana, or the Italian version Giuliana.
A nice soft, feminine name, Lila can also be spelled Lyla, Lylah or Lilah.
50/50 names are names that have two known and accepted spellings of roughly equal popularity.
In the case of these names, the person has to make others aware of which spelling they use and hope the person remembers correctly. They will be mistaken with some frequency, but likely not enough to dissuade someone from choosing the name.
What to do if you’re unsure about a name spelling
If you are unsure about which spelling to go with (or just want to see how the average person will spell a name), try this trick. Say the name out loud to 5 or more friends and have them write down what they think the name is. If most or all come up with the same spelling, that’s the one to go with. If you get handed five different spellings, the name is going to be a problem for people to spell.
Moms tell their misspelled name stories
I love the old classic names, and I named my youngest daughter “Eleanor” which is the classic spelling. I’ve had multiple people spell it Ellanor even after I’ve corrected them multiple times. They’ve said it’s not a big deal, but I feel like it is! A person’s name is such a huge part of them that I feel like taking the time to learn to spell and pronounce it right is important.
My son’s name is Jackson but we call him Jack. I am constantly asked if we spell his name as Jax instead of Jack. Or we always get is his name spelled Jaxon or even had it spelled at Jacksyn! Seems pretty straightforward but people also have a lot of ways they want to try and manipulate it.
My daughter is named Zoe and people always spell it wrong. Usually Zoey or Zoi. It drives me nuts. I’ve even had people question me, “Are you sure that’s how you spell it?” Um, yes, I’m pretty sure I know how to spell my daughters name.
Isaiah is very often confused with Isaac. Also I’ve seen it spelled with all combination of vowels. We got a paper from school once where his name was written Isaiaiah.
My son Heath is always called Keith. I have had to repeat over and over that it is “Heath with an H.” That really confused someone and they said “well yea, Keith ends with an H. How else would you spell it? Do you mean Kh?”
Many parents are looking to make their child stand out when they choose a baby name. Others just want a gorgeous name that fits their child and are ok with it being well-known. These beautiful girl names perfectly fit that description.
While not entirely unique (you’ve probably heard them all before), they also aren’t names you hear over and over.
If you’re looking for a beautiful girl name that isn’t super popular but also not unheard of, this is a great list for you. None of these names are ranked in the top 30 according to social security.
Alternately spelled Lilah, Lila is a lovely name that has never been in the top 100 most popular names.
This name has a similar feel to several super popular girl names: Ava, Maya, and Amelia. If you like the style of those, Amaya is a gorgeous underused choice.
Gwendolyn is a beautiful Welsh name meaning white ring, and comes with the cute, spunky nickname Gwen.
A pretty name with tons of pop culture associations (remember the Simon and Garfunkel song?) Cecilia is a well-known name that amazingly hasn’t hit the top of the charts.
The epitome of understated beauty! Caroline is a classic, feminine name that is a perfect if you want to avoid anything too trendy.
If you don’t count characters from Gilmore Girls, chances are you haven’t met more than one or two people named Lorelei in your life. This beautiful name has a modern, exotic feel without being too complicated or “out there”.
Alternately spelled Hallie, Halle is a simple but lovely name of Norse origin. You may be surprised to know that at one point in history it was a masculine name (diminutive form of Harald), making this a former boy name turned over to the girls.
Fans aren’t only looking for Disney inspired boy names, they are taking the lead from female characters too! Aurora is the true name of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, and it is the name of the Roman goddess of sunrise as well. Mythology says that her tears turned to the morning dew.
There is no shortage of beautiful famous Natalies out there between Natalie Cole, Natalie Wood, and Natalie Portman. Narrowly missing the top ten at its peak in 2008, Natalie has held steady in the thirties for the last several years.
An old-fashioned name with a modern feel, Cora is as pretty as it is simple. Use alone or as a nickname for Coralie, Cordelia, or Coraline.
Sophisticated Isla (pronounced eye-la) is a gentle-sounding name meaning island.
A Hindu name meaning night, Nisha has crossed over into the English speaking world and makes a beautiful name for any female.
Do you have a favorite of these beautiful girl names?
When it comes to girls names, there is no shortage of gorgeous choices. I’d love to hear any you’d like to add, whether popular or uncommon. Leave me a comment!
And if you are pregnant and want to be sure you are prepared, check out the Oh Baby Pregnancy planner:
It has 50+ printable pages to get you organized and on track for pregnancy and beyond. Trimester to-do lists, questions to ask your OB-GYN, a birth plan template, hospital packing list, hospital tour questions, daycare tour questions, and breastfeeding guide are all included. Find out more here!