In Name Only

How Popular is TOO Popular for Baby Names?

baby names
I'm always intrigued when I talk to parents about their baby naming strategy.

Some people simply pick a name without regards to popularity—and are often very surprised when they find out that the name they thought was so original was in the top 5 names for that year. (The mom of one of the three Olivias in my daughter's class said she was shocked that there were so many.)

And then there are others who won't pick a name if they know it's in the top 1000—even though, quite honestly, if you avoid the top 10 names for your state, you're probably golden. I've even been asked by readers to remove references to their beloved baby names from blog posts or stories, as if my single blog post is going to be responsible for breathing life back into the name Louisa. (Honestly, I wish I was even close to that influential!) This crew is also more likely to choose creative baby name spellings to make a their child's name stand out—even though Aydyn is still pronounced exactly like Aidan.

Personally, I'm more in the first camp. The names we picked for our daughters were picked to honor beloved family members, and if those family members were named Sophia or Olivia or Isabella, that would have been that, popularity be damned. But if we'd chosen another baby naming strategy, simply picking baby names that we loved or ones we thought had a lovely meaning, we may have been more conscious of where they sat on the charts.

So where do you stand on this issue? Would you choose a top 10 name, despite the fact that your kiddos would likely find others with the same name in their class? Or would you consciously try to avoid those above a certain point on the popularity list? I'm intrigued to see where you all draw the line!

Still looking for the perfect baby name? Try our Baby Name Finder, or email me at with your dilemma, and we'll try to solve it on this blog.

And don't forget to like In Name Only on Facebook to keep up with the very latest in baby names!

Baby Names: Is It Too Popular?