Sophia and Amelia are the second and third most popular choices for girls respectively, according to parenting website BabyCentre UK’s midyear charts. Maya, Harper and Layla all climbed into the top 20, while Aria was the only new entry in the top ten.
For boys, Oliver and Noah are the runners up. Freddie and Alfie were both new entries into the top 10, and Arthur, Henry, Archie and Theo made it into the top 20.
The BabyCentre team analysed the baby name registrations of tens of thousands of new parents on their website to look at the trends for 2018, and they found that the royal family, the #MeToo movement and unusual spellings all had an impact.
You may have expected the birth of Prince Louis and the royal wedding to have had immediate impact on parents’ choices, but that is not the case. Meghan (or Megan) and Louis didn’t see any significant shift in popularity, however this is likely to change by the end of the year.
Classic regal names such as Victoria, Charlotte, Zara, Charlie and George, continue to be popular and a previously unusual choice, Princess, broke into the top 100 for the first time.
Elsewhere in the charts, parents have been opting for weird and wonderful spellings of classic top 100 names. Jackson has been popular for the last few years, but for the first time Jaxon has overtaken the more traditional spelling. The registrations included six different spellings of this favourite, while Aaron clocked up 13 variations and in the girls’ chart, there were 12 variations on Aria.
Parents favoured using x, y and z when choosing an unusual spelling. Jaxon was joined by Kaylub, Liyam, Fyn, Jayson and Zayden, while Madyson, Roze, Wynter and Maizie all made an appearance this year for girls.
Lorna Marsh, BabyCentre associate editor, believes the surge in “weird and wonderful spellings” is due to “parents rebelling against a relatively unchanging top ten”.
“By choosing an unusual spelling of a popular choice, parents can shake up the status quo while still playing it relatively safe with their children’s names,” she said.
The impact of the #MeToo movement has been felt in the first half of 2018, with Harvey plummeting in popularity with parents. This follows allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
“Harvey has fallen 24 places to number 83,” says Marsh. “We’ll have to wait for the end of year top 100 to see if it falls out of the chart altogether. Meanwhile we could witness names of some of the women behind the movement break into the coveted top spots.”
Alyssa (Milano, who started the viral hashtag) has featured in the registrations, along with the first names of other key women, including Ashley (Judd), Rose (McGowan) Gwyneth (Paltrow), Jennifer (Lawrence) and Asia (Argento).
The Most Popular Baby Names For Girls In 2018 (So Far)
The Most Popular Baby Names For Boys In 2018 (So Far)