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85 Adorable Grandma Names for Your Family Matriarch

Part of the fun of becoming a grandmother is deciding what the kids will call you.

Goldie Hawn's oldest grandson is now 19 years old, and he's been calling her "Glam-Ma" ever since he can remember. Judi Dench regularly appears on TikTok alongside her grandson, who endearingly calls her "Ma." Apparently, Kris Jenner insists on being called "Lovely" by her grandkids, and Sharon Osbourne is "Shazza" to hers. If it hasn't already been made clear, grandma names are evolving fast and often deviating from the traditional. The reason? It's hard to separate certain titles from the stereotypes that surround them. While there's nothing wrong with the quaint image of a little old lady with white hair and butterscotch candies in her purse, not all women are eager to embrace it as their own. If you find yourself in a similar position, then keep reading below. This original list of cool grandmother names may help you find your most important nickname.

When Did We Start Assigning Nicknames for Grandparents?

We can thank the Boomer generation for the recent uptick in hip grandmother names, but the traditional concept goes much further back. There was a point in time where the word "grandma" didn't even exist. The most closely related term was "ealdemodor," an Old English word sounds similar to "old mother" when said out loud. It wasn't until the early 1400s that the Anglo-Saxons decided to borrow from the French and came up with the word, "grandam," which is "grand" and "dame" merged together. From that point on, English speakers had a new word to use when referring to an "old lady," "great lady," or even a "great mother."

RELATED: 57 Flower Names for Girls (With Meanings).

What Are the Most Popular Nicknames for Grandmother?

granddaughter hugging her grandmother
DisobeyArt / Shutterstock

It's estimated that there are over 350 languages signed and spoken across the U.S. So it's no surprise that the list of names we commonly call our grandmothers varies widely from state to state.

According to a study conducted by Preply, a language tutoring platform, names such as "Granny," "Nana," and "Mawmaw" remain the most popular across the country, though alternative picks like "Gigi," "Bibi," and "Momo" steadily gaining steam. "Abuela" also ranks high on the list in states with large Hispanic populations, including Texas, Arizona, and California. Other top contenders include "Nanny," Grammy," and "Gram."

RELATED: 100+ Gender-Neutral Names (With Meanings) and Why It Matters.

How to Choose a Cute Grandma Name

Coming up with fun nicknames for the modern grandmother is an important task. Check out the tips below for figuring out the right nickname for you and your family:

Family History: Many grandparent names are dictated by language and culture. While some folks may like the idea of coming up with something new and original, others are proud to accept more traditional names associated with their heritage.

For instance, according to the study mentioned above, "Bubbe," the Yiddish word for grandma remains one of the most popular nicknames within New Jersey, a state with one of the biggest Jewish populations in the country. Similarly, the top pick for residents of Pennsylvania is "Oma," the German equivalent of grandmother. Unsurprisingly, the state houses the largest German population in the country.

Personal Preference: Whether you want to go with something that screams, "She's the fun grandmother," or stick to a name that's more representative of your background, it's entirely up to you. There are few wrong answers here.

How Easy It Is to Pronounce: Wanting to come up with a cute nickname that represents who you are outside of being a grandmother is perfectly valid, but it's also important to consider who will be using it most often. Certain words are harder for kids to pronounce than others. Even if you go with a more traditional title, you may want to tweak things for the very little ones who have yet to perfect their speech.

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Modern Grandma Names

three women smiling down on the camera
  1. Abba
  2. Abbi
  3. Amma
  4. Babe
  5. Bama
  6. Bamba
  7. Bebe
  8. Bella
  9. Gigi
  10. Glam-Ma
  11. Glancy
  12. Lala
  13. Lovely
  14. Kiki
  15. Kitty
  16. Mimzy
  17. Momo
  18. Nini
  19. Pippa

Traditional Grandmother Names

grandmother and granddaughter baking
Jacob Lund/Shutterstock
  1. Gram or Grams
  2. Grammy or Grammie
  3. Grandame
  4. Grandma
  5. Grandma [Last Name]
  6. Grandmama
  7. Grandmom
  8. Grandmother
  9. Granny or Grannie
  10. Gran or Gran Gran
  11. Mama [Last Name]
  12. Nana
  13. Nan

RELATED: 200+ Cool Last Names From Around the World.

Funny Nicknames for Grandma

grandma giving her grandson a shoulder ride – Yuri A/Shutterstock
  1. Big Mama
  2. Big Mom
  3. Bobo
  4. Bubbles
  5. Cookie
  6. Gramma Bear
  7. Granno
  8. Granny Cupcakes
  9. Granny Pie
  10. Huggy
  11. Instagran
  12. Marmar
  13. Moo Moo
  14. Yutu

Cool Grandma Names

Cool grandmother with pink sunglasses and headphones listening music.
  1. Babs
  2. Cha-Cha
  3. Coco
  4. Didi
  5. Gee
  6. G-Mama
  7. G-Mom
  8. Grana
  9. Ma
  10. Mu
  11. Nandy
  12. Viva
  13. Zaza

RELATED: 118 Muslim Girl Names (With Meanings!).

Cute Grandma Names

Close Up Of Granddaughter Hugging Grandmother In Park
Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock
  1. Apa
  2. Birdy
  3. Honey
  4. Lollie or Lolly
  5. Lulu
  6. Mimi
  7. Nanny
  8. Queenie
  9. Sassy
  10. Sugar
  11. Sweetie
  12. Teenie or Teeny
  13. Tootsie

Southern Grandmother Names

Grandmother and grandson hugging
  1. Bomma
  2. Bunny
  3. Maw-Maw
  4. Mamaw
  5. Meemaw or MeMaw
  6. Gramma
  7. Gammie
  8. Gramaw
  9. Mama [First Name]
  10. Mammy
  11. Mimi
  12. Mimsy
  13. Nene

RELATED: 50+ Beautiful Japanese Baby Names (With Meanings!).

How to Say "Grandma" in Other Languages

Happy grandmother hugging granddaughter on couch

Arabic: The most common Arabic name for grandmother is "Jadati," though there are many different words you can use depending on the dialect being spoken.

French: The most common grandmother names in France are "Grand-mère," "Grand-maman" and "Mémé."

Gaelic: Scottish Gaelic speakers use the word "Seanmhair" for grandma, which means "good mother." Other commonly used Scottish grandmother names include "Nana," "Nanna," "Mhamó" and "Mamó."

German: The German word for grandmother is "Oma."

Greek: The Greek name for a grandmother is "Yia-yia." Popular variations also include "Yiayia," "Yaya" and "Ya-ya."

Hawaiian: In Hawaii, the formal word for grandmother is "Kuku Wahine" or "Tutu Wahine," but many shorten the term to "Tutu."

Mandarin Chinese: In Mandarin, maternal and paternal grandparents are assigned different names. In other words, grandmothers are named based on which side of the family they stem from. The paternal grandmother typically goes by "Zu mu," though "Nai nai" is also commonly used. Maternal grandmothers may be called "Wai zu mu," "Lao lao," or "Wai puo."

Polish: The traditional grandma name in Poland is "Babcia" though "Babunia" is also commonly used.

Russian: The Russian word for grandmother is "Babushka."

Spanish: In Spanish, grandmothers are known as "Abuela." Some families also use "Abuelita" as a more informal term of endearment.

Swahili: Those who speak Swahili call their grandmothers "Bibi."

Yiddish: The Yiddish word for grandmother is "Bubbeh," which can also be spelled "Bubbe" and "Bubbie."

Wrapping Up

That's it for our list of grandmother names, but be sure to check back in with us soon for even more ways to connect with the ones you love. You can also sign up for our newsletter to enjoy similar content, as well as the latest in wellness, entertainment, and travel.

Carrie Weisman
Carrie Weisman oversees all SEO efforts at Best Life. She specializes in content optimization and editorial marketing. Read more
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