The Shakespearean line, “What’s in a name?” from Romeo and Juliet, couldn’t resonate more with expectant parents.
Choosing a name for your little one is an important task, yet it can become tedious as you sift through endless books and lists only to realise how many names you dislike. You’ll be saying this name at least 20 times a day, so the time and effort put into finding the perfect fit is well worth it.
The most popular South African baby names for 2016/17
Junior is still at the top of the list as the most preferred name for a boy for the third year in a row, while Precious retained the top spot for the most popular name for a girl for the second year in a row.
Why these names you might ask? According to Statistics South Africa’s 2017 Recorded Live Births Report, the names chosen for boys and girls reflect positive hopes for the child, express beliefs and are inspired by positive connotations of both love and acceptance.
The most popular baby names for 2017 globally
The top 10 names for boys saw a shakeup with Jackson topping the list and the Wolverine-inspired name, Logan, entering the top 10. The top 10 girls names saw very little changes.
According to Nameberry, the baby names hub, 2017 saw baby names inspired by traditional names, celebrities and movies like Harry Potter for names such as Luna, Albus and Severus.
Disney names rang in strong for the girls with Moana entering the Top 100 along with other favourites Jasmine, Aurora and Belle. The boys names saw Arlo enter the Top 100 – remember the cute green dinosaur from The Good Dinosaur?
Baby name predictions for 2018
The shakeup in baby names is set to continue in 2018 with these predicted trends as seen in 2017.
With the rise of equal rights and Women’s marches across the globe in 2017, and the popularity of Wonder Woman, strong female names have been brought to the fore, including on-screen heroines and traditional figures of Diana, Eleanor, Margaret, and Arya.
The name Jackson has paved the way for presidential names for 2018. Other names climbing the charts include Kennedy, Taylor, Carter, Madison and Theodore.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third royal baby in April 2018 and Prince Harry is set to wed actress Meghan Markle in May. With the news surrounding the Royal Family, it’s predicted that the famous family will inspire baby names this year.
We have seen a rise of surnames used as first names both locally and internationally. A trend that will probably continue into 2018.
You’ll definitely see these popular last names creeping up the baby names list: Nkosi; Ndlovu; Jackson; Dlamini; Hamilton; Jameson and Morgan.
The blockbuster superhero franchises of Marvel and DC Comics continue to break records at the box-office. The trend of superheroes has seen a rise in superhero names and even villain-inspired names.
- Wade (Deadpool)
- Logan (Wolverine)
- Odin (Thor)
- Ulysses (Black Panther)
- Everrett(Captain America)
- Zuri (Black Panther)
- Harley (Suicide Squad)
- Rey (Star Wars: The Last Jedi)
- May (Spiderman: Homecoming)
- Nakia (Black Panther)
- Hela (Thor: Ragnarok)
- Pepper (Iron Man)
Xanet is an award-winning journalist and Living and Loving’s digital editor. She has won numerous awards for her health and wellness articles and was a finalist for the Discovery Journalist of the Year in 2009 and again in 2011 for the Discovery Best Health Consumer Reporting and Feature Writing category. She is responsible for our online presence across social media channels and makes sure our moms have fresh and interesting articles to read every day.