We live in a time when popular names are no longer just “Jennifer” or “Bryan”, or other, you know, relatively normal sounding mid-eighties baby names. Now, we call our kids types of grass, spices, planets and mid-western states to set them apart from the rest. It’s fun and can be endearing, but some of the names should be left behind in 2013. 2014, I’m looking at you and the timeless names like “Evelyn” “Lucille” and “Charles” that are around the corner. Every year, celebrities have a huge impact on what becomes popular in the name market, and 2013 is no different. Let’s look back at the most popular names from 2013 in the categories: spices, virtue, “n” names, unisex and unique. If you’re about to be “with baby” (how exciting!) learn what to do to make your house baby-ready.
Yeah. It’s a trend. In 2013 there were more babies named “Juniper” and “Caraway” then I care to admit. Luckily, these spicy names can be shortened to cute names like “June” and “Cara” that will make getting through primary classes just that much easier for the kids. It’s a fun way to express your uniqueness and your child’s uniqueness – but things like Pepper and Nutmeg probably shouldn’t (but probably will) make the cut.
Popular Spice names in 2013:
This is new to me. As I was perusing forums to understand the name trends of this year I came across forum after forum advocating virtue names. This kind of category would include names like “Valor”, “Justice”, “Bravery”, “Mercy” and “Nobel”. While I enjoy the sentiment of naming your child after a quality like “Faith” or “Prudence”, it’s not a sure fire way that your kid will embrace these the virtue of their name. In Africa, and probably other countries around the world, virtue names are incredibly popular. I’ve got several friends in Ghana who go by “Happy” or “Constance”. They have been popular here over the years, but in 2013 they were really a hit. There is no sign of this upswing ceasing as we launch into 2014. If you’re little Clarity isn’t letting up on the cry-screaming all day and night – learn how to make her the happiest baby on the block, so you can get some shuteye.
Popular Virtue names in 2013
If you have no idea what I’m referring to, just look around. Jayden, Zayden, Caiden, Aiden, Madison – the list is maddening long. This was definitely popular in 2013 and is definitely on its way out (we hope). At first, it was great. The names were new, refreshing, but not totally over the top weird. But with half the population sporting these names now, I think it’s time to move on. We can see these names declining (however ever-so-slightly) with 2014 on the horizon.
Popular “N” names in 2013:
Unisex names are my personal favorite. I love the idea of calling a girl “Jo” or “Avery”. Boys, watch out because there is a lot of “Sage” and “Dakota” coming your way. Although a lot of the unisex names happen to fall under the “N” names category, there are some popular ones from 2013 that should be accounted for.
Unisex Names popular in 2013:
This category just covers all the names that the spices, virtues and “N” names don’t. I suppose it goes without saying that celebrities have been naming their kids weird things for years and no one really says anything. Amidst the weirdness, some of the names are actually literary references. That’s a new trend and one I’d have to say I’m totally down with. I mean, how cool is it to name your kid Gatsby after the classic The Great Gatsby? Then there’s people like Frank Zappa. I mean, his kids are Dweezel and Moonunit. Somehow they survived their childhood and have grown into very happy, normal adults despite their lunacy names. If you fall into the name-my-kid-weird-things category – there is hope.
Popular unique names for 2013:
North (Kanye and Kim Kardashian’s baby)
Seraphina (Jennifer Garner’s little girl)
Katniss (A Hunger Games reference, but also an edible plant)
Atticus (The father in To Kill a Mockingbird)
Ezra (Better than Ezra? Anyone?)
Top 15 Names for 2013
While all these other creative names filled birth certificates all across America, the top 15 names for both boys and girls have remained remarkably unchanged for the past 4 years. In fact, between 2012 and 2013, only three names are different on the girls list and none have changed on the boys list. We can anticipate a shift in tides as we ring in the New Year though. 2014 is bound to be full of grandma sounding names that will inevitably become over used as well.
In the end, trends in names will continue to cycle year after year, decade after decade. It’s kind of like fashion trends, as we see the 80’s come back and soon (I hope) the 90’s fashion statements will reappear and it will be “cool”. Whatever you decide to name your kid is going to be perfect for them so don’t fret over what’s the most popular, or what someone might say about the name you choose. It’s ultimately your choice and this guide, and others like it, are just here to help stir up your creativity and provide you with new ideas. For you soon-to-be moms out there, take some time out for you and practice some yoga for labor. You can brainstorm names while you’re at it. Happy name hunting!