As the saying goes, “What’s in a name?” Choosing the best name for your baby girl means spending some time weighing the thousands of options out there. However, the standard rules apply, such as picking a name that flows with your (or your baby’s) last name. Additionally, it needs to be something that you won’t mind yelling out in a crowd once your little one is mobile and manages to get away from you in public because you were fussing with the diaper bag. Even still, you’re still facing a big list of most popular baby girl names to sift through to find just the right one.
Thankfully, we’re up to the task! We’ve simplified this parenting task for you by gathering 21 different options for you to go through, divided into three categories of baby girl names: classic, trendy, and modern.
So, let’s dive in and see if any of these strikes your fancy!
Classic doesn’t mean boring! Many of these names have been around for hundreds of years, but they are far from old-fashioned. These girls’ names are classics that will be in style for hundreds of years to come, and they all make great options when you’re looking for the perfect name for your sweet little one.
Coming from Latin and meaning “universal,” Emma is a classic name that is still popular today. If the name makes you think of some famous actresses, like Emma Thompson and Emma Stone, then you’re not alone. It’s also a form of the name Emilia, Emily, or Emilee, other classics that you might want to consider.
Similar names: Abigail, Ava, and Amelia
Did you know that Charlotte is considered to be the feminine version of the name Charles? Charlotte has French origins and means “free.” Although the name has been very popular off and on through the years, it wasn’t until Sex and the City that it popped up again.
Similar names: Isabella and Gabriella
An English name that means “Ancestor’s Descendant,” the name Olivia actually has nothing to do with olives or the trees that bear the fruit. Instead, it comes from the male version of the name Oliver, which has Norse origins and is another classic option for boys.
Similar names: Eloise and Aubrey
There are a few different ways to spell the name Sophia, including Sofia, but no matter what, they all mean the same thing: wisdom. The name has Greek origins and has appeared on several well-known fictional characters, like Sophia from The Golden Girls and the cartoon princess Sofia the First.
Similar names: Aria and Layla
Eleanor is a French name that has a number of cool nickname possibilities, including Ellie, Ella, or Nora. When you hear the name, you probably think of the female character from Alvin and the Chipmunks, although there are a number of famous Eleanors as well, including former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.
Similar names: Adeline and Victoria
Another name with Latin origins, Grace, means “charm.” This makes plenty of sense since one famous person with the name – Princess Grace, also known as Grace Kelly, the actress turned Princess of Monaco, was indeed full of charm.
Similar names: Evelyn and Josephine
This classic appears as a name for both famous actresses, like Claire Danes, as well as Claire Dunphy, a character on Modern Family. The name means “enlightened and illustrious” and is French in origin. Alternate spellings include Clare and even Clarey, which is an interesting nickname that isn’t heard of a lot – it's both unique and classic!
Similar names: Scarlett and Camila
Let’s see what the trends in the world of trending top baby names have to offer your little one! Some names have become popular over the past few years, even though they weren’t on the radar previously. Whether they’re names that a celebrity chose for their own kids or cool ones that are popping up in kindergarten classes around the country, one of these unique baby girl names might just be the right one for your precious baby girl.
Who hasn’t heard of the author Harper Lee? Although the name can be unisex, but thanks to her, it’s mostly given to girls in recent years. The name itself is English and means “harp player.”
Other versions of the name Maya include Mayim, opening up the possibilities that you’ve heard of an actress with the moniker – yes, think of Maya Rudolph and Mayim Bialik. An English name, Maya, means "good mother." In Sanskrit, it means “illusion." The Hebrew version, Mayim, means “water.”
Similar names: Mia and Mila
Ruby is a gemstone, which is exactly where the name comes from. The word itself is English, and it’s a cool way to incorporate a birthstone into a name. Imagine it embroidered on the side of your diaper bag!
A Greek word that means either “heart” or “maiden,” depending on who you ask, Cora is a trendy baby-naming option that has classic roots. It’s also a last name that is commonly used as a first name.
Similar Names: Athena
An Irish word that used to be a last name meaning descendant of Conn, Quinn is a cool, unisex option that fits both little girls and boys. However, there’s nothing cooler than being the only female Quinn in a kindergarten class.
A cool name that started becoming trendy back in the 1970s, thanks to former Flower Children that began to find inspiration in nature. The word itself is Latin, and it’s a cool way to name your little one something unique and trendy, yet a little classic at the same time.
Similar names: Delilah
The name Piper is gender-neutral, although it is one of the more popular options for girls these days. It means “flute player” and comes from Olde English.
Similar names: Zoey and Hailey
Finally, we can’t forget the modern names. A combination of trendy and classic, these names come from fairy tales, last names that inspired a first name, or even from a list of former “boy only” names that are now unisex in nature. When picking a modern name, you have many choices, including these gems!
A Latin name that means “dawn,” Aurora has Greek origins who appears as a Roman goddess that represents the dawn. The name appears in numerous places in fiction, including as the princess in Sleeping Beauty.
Similar names: Persephone and Valentina
Unlike Olivia, Olive actually references the trees. It comes from the English and references olive trees or the olive itself. Olive is both the name of the famous character Olive Oyl and one of Drew Barrymore's daughters.
From the English, meaning “willow tree,” the name Willow has appeared in pop culture, most recently as a character on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The name can be unisex in nature, although it’s mainly used as a girl’s name these days and a quite modern one at that.
Similar names: Luna and Ivy
Finally, a name with an American origin! Skylar means “scholar” and can be spelled in several different ways, including Schuyler. If you want a cool name that will help your child stand out from the pack, then look no further than this modern classic that is oh-so-cool!
Similar names: Isla and Maeve
While the name might make you think of either the famous family that uses it as their last name (the Kennedys), it’s actually a pretty modern option for a little girl. Just keep the fact that it means “misshapen head” quiet (we kid you not).
Similar names: Everly and Gianna
With multiple spellings to choose from, including Riley, Rylee, Rily, and so on, the name means “Descendant of Roghallach” in Irish. Normally a last name, it has become a first name in recent years. Depending on how you spell it, the name can be unisex, with Riley being used for baby boy names and Rylee more for girls.
Another unisex name (think of Peyton Manning, the NFL player), Peyton is a pretty cool option for girls and is a great pick for gender-neutral names. It has English origins and means “from Pacca’s town.”
Picking That Perfect Name
Naming your child is a big deal. We totally get it! After all, they’ll have the moniker for the rest of their life, meaning that you need to take your time and make the right decision for your sweet little one.
While you could change their name early on, should you find that your Peyton seems more like a Willow, that could be costly and require extra paperwork from the SSA. Instead, try out a few options and narrow down your list, so when your little one makes her big debut, you already know what her sweet name should be and can have it embroidered on your diaper bag for all to see!