The 30 Best Pop Culture-Inspired Baby Names
Set your kid apart from the sea of Emmas and Aidans.
Picking the right name for a baby is an undeniably nerve-wracking experience. That’s especially true for parents who take their inspiration from pop culture when it comes time to name their little ones. For every kid who gets to enjoy a somewhat trendy name they can wear proudly into adulthood, there are a dozen others whose parents should have read a bit further before dubbing their offspring Theon.
If you want to give your kid a name that will stand the test of time while commemorating your favorite movie, book, album, or celebrity, there’s still hope. We’ve compiled a list of failsafe pop culture-inspired names sure to hold up long into the future. And if you’re eager to take a page from your favorite star’s baby-naming playbook, check out The 30 Best Celebrity Baby Names.
Best known as the name of Samantha Stevens’ half-witch daughter in the fantasy sitcom Bewitched, this slightly unusual moniker also has an interesting meaning and history. Tabitha is derived from the Aramaic word for gazelle, and also has a Biblical connotation: Saint Tabitha was resurrected from the dead by the Apostle Peter because of her charitable deeds. After the naming is done, learn how to navigate the next 18 years by brushing up on The Single Best Way to Raise Emotionally Healthy Kids.
Call Me By Your Name is one of 2017’s most impressive feats of filmmaking, thanks in large part to Luca Guadagnino’s masterful directing. Fortunately, the director’s first name has a lovely meaning as well, derived from the Latin word for light.
There are few singers who’ve earned the admiration heaped on Adele in the past decade, making this a fitting name for any well-loved little girl.
Stranger Things star Caleb McLaughlin steals virtually every scene he’s in, playing adorable Lucas Sinclair in the Netflix hit. For those who like Biblical names, this fits the bill, too: Caleb was one of the Israelites who made it to the Promised Land after leaving Egypt.
Game of Thrones fans who aren’t so keen on naming their kids after characters still have plenty of options to draw from, thanks to some of the cast’s unique names. Maisie Williams, who plays Arya Stark, has a perfectly precious first name to pass down.
Riverdale’s female characters aren’t the only ones who get decent names. While Jughead and Moose won’t make the cut, Archie, a diminutive of Archibald, derived from the Germanic words for genuine and bold, is pretty darn cute.
While Blue is a name best left to celebrity offspring, Ivy, Beyoncé and Jay Z’s eldest daughter’s middle name, works well on babies and adults alike.
We wouldn’t necessarily wish rapper Drake’s first name, Aubrey, on a little boy, Drake is a strong name that holds up well in adulthood. However, just because you want to borrow Drake’s name doesn’t mean you should borrow his lingo—learn what to avoid by reading the 40 Things Men Over 40 Should Never Say.
Whether they love the abundance of nicknames it offers, from Penny to Ellie, or the association with The Odyssey, Penelope has become a big hit among celebrities as of late. Not only does it suit Oscar winner Penelope Cruz, Tina Fey and Kourtney Kardashian both gave their little ones this adorable name in recent years.
Arrested Development’s oblivious Tobias Fünke may not be a great role model, but his name is still well worth wearing. The name Tobias comes from a Hebrew name meaning “God’s goodness,” and the nickname Toby isn’t half-bad, either.
It turns out that Frozen has given us more than earworm songs: it’s also thrust the adorable name Elsa into the mainstream. Luckily, this name is more than just a trendy one-off—Elsa is an anglicized version of a Hebrew name meaning “an oath to God.”
Supernatural super fans will have no trouble picking names for their little ones. Dean, the name of one of the show’s male leads, is just as fitting on a little boy as it is a grown man. Fortunately, raising your kid to be a decent human isn’t so hard when you know the 20 Ways to Be a (Much) Better Father.
If Maisie Williams’ girly moniker isn’t your style, her character name, Arya, might just work instead. Its more traditional spelling, Aria, is also the name of Lucy Hale’s character on Pretty Little Liars.
Dylan devotees don’t have to settle for naming their kid Bob to pay homage to the famous singer. Jakob, the name of the Nobel Prize winner’s youngest son with wife Sara, is the perfect combination of traditional and unique.
The Harry Potter books offered up plenty of less-than-desirable baby names, from Ron to Voldemort. Luckily, girls fared better, and Hermione is still a winner. Meaning “well born,” this Greek-derived name was given to the only daughter of Helen of Troy and King Menelaus.
Now that Showtime’s serial killer hit Dexter is off the air, this cute name is back on the table for a new generation of kids. And when you want to ensure that you’re effectively bonding with your offspring, turn to The Secret to Raising Healthy Kids.
Whether you’re naming your little one after a teenage witch or the classic Audrey Hepburn movie, this pretty name is a stylish nod to pop culture.
Horror fans have plenty of great names to pick from, even if Freddy and Jason don’t fit the bill. Case in point: Ash, the name of Bruce Campbell’s character in the Evil Dead series, isn’t too out there, but you’re also unlikely to encounter a dozen Ashes on the playground, either.
Now that The Fault in Our Stars is a few years behind us, it’s safe to give kids this adorably old-fashioned name once again. In fact, it’s a favorite among celebs, with stars like Emily Blunt and Julia Roberts naming their daughters Hazel.
Animal names are on trend lately, but names like Birdie and Bear just aren’t everyone’s style. Luckily, Fox, a la The X-Files’ Fox Mulder, is an excellent alternative. And to avoid embarrassing your kids after the birth certificate is signed, tackle these 40 Best Tips For Dressing Well in Your 40s.
If you’re looking for a pop culture-inspired name that’s both classic and cool, look no further than Annalise. The first name of Viola Davis’ character on How to Get Away With Murder, this German name has a wide variety of spellings to choose from, too.
Fans of French pop can pay tribute to one of the genre’s icons, Serge Gainsbourg, with this not-too-common boy’s name.
Looking for a strong name to give your little girl? Try Olivia on for size. Characters like SVU’s Olivia Benson and Scandal’s Olivia Pope are hardly the shrinking violet type.
Western movies have provided us some of the least-usable names in history, from Rooster to Butch. However, there’s one notable exception: Shane. This poignant classic about a gunfighter with a heart of gold is one of the most beloved films of all time, and the male lead’s name still works well today.
Now that Lady Bird has become an international hit, we might just see a crop of little Saoirses running around. Pronounced Seer-sha, this Irish name meaning “freedom,” is a strong, yet still adorable choice.
If the name is strong enough for Prince Harry and cute enough for Britain’s most adorable pop star, Harry Styles, it’s should certainly work for your bundle of joy. Unconvinced? Just discover the 25 Reasons Why Prince Harry is the Coolest Royal.
Meaning “happiness,” this elegant name is finally usable again. Luckily, it’s now more commonly associated with Rogue One’s Felicity Jones than it is Keri Russell’s show-ruining haircut.
Sure, Sterling may be the first name of the womanizing spy in FX’s Archer. However, This is Us star Sterling K. Brown makes a pretty good case for passing this strong name along to future generations. Discover why by reading our list of the 13 Best Moments from the Golden Globes.
Take a page from the Victoria and David Beckhams’ playbook with this adorably on-trend name. Don’t feel like admitting that you take your parenting cues from the Spice Girls? You can always say you named your kid after To Kill a Mockingbird author Harper Lee.
Love a good mob movie but not ready to doom your kid to the name Fredo? You can’t go wrong with Vito, meaning “life,” the name of Marlon Brando’s character in The Godfather. In fact, The Godfather series is so iconic it earned two spots on our list of 37 Movies Every Man Over 40 Should be Able to Quote.
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