It has been said, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet…”. Sorry Juliet dearest, but your obsession with Romeo doesn’t quite fit here.
I didn’t cut corners, instead I searched far and wide, using the expansive reach of the internet and yellowed newspaper pages (slight exaggeration), to find you the most beautiful baby names to date. There are names on this list from as far east as Russia and as far South as Chile—all of which have been found to be uniquely lovely throughout the world.
What is in a name, you ask? Well first impressions for starters! There is nothing more cringe-worthy than having your kid come home in tears after some bully on the playground unimpressively made their name rhyme with “fart”—that shall not be named or found among this list (not sorry)!
You may love your friends dearly but when you stumble on the most perfect name, pregnant or not, you'll want to put it in your vault of names and shut it down to ensure no friend beats you to it and steal that perfect name.
Don’t let the interesting spelling deter you, this name has roots in Polish and Slavic origin, and can carry with it a rich family history. Zofia means “the one who brings life” or in the ancient Greek to mean “wisdom”. While the spelling is not common in the West, the traditionally spelled “Sophia” does not offer the same unique flare! NEVER be afraid to stand out, because your baby girl will be extraordinary. This name is sure to bring love, light, and life to the world; through plenty of laughs and sweet, gentle, spirit. Perfect for a miracle baby or a tough pregnancy, each time you say her name you will be reminded of how precious life really is, and the wonderful ways she will brighten your life as she grows older
It fits the “sweet and feminine” daughter many moms envision. Ranked as Sweden’s 18th most popular name, Alva is sure to take the top spot on your name list. There are many notable women with the name Alva, among them, a Nobel Peace Prize Winner Alva Myrdal, and an Olympic Medalist Alva Colquhoun of Australia. This name also has its’ Hebrew roots with the meaning “brightness”--in fact, the inventor of the light bulb Thomas “Alva” Edison, had this as his middle name! For any mother with big dreams for their little one, this name would fit perfectly. Although she is sweet and feminine, she is mighty and strong-willed to accomplish her goals! It’s such a great sounding name, that it became the brand-name for a leading cloth diaper company called ALVA Baby.
For the little boy you hope will laugh his little socks off, this name is the most fitting. With variations as beautiful as “Yitzhak” and “Isaac”--you are sure to have plenty of stories to tell. If you are familiar, history talks about Abraham the Jewish patriarch laughing when God told him his wife Sarah would have a son in her old age, and from that laughter they named their son Isaac. The religious story is sure to be a great bedtime favorite. If you want a timeless name for your little boy, this one is perfect. It has transcended hundreds of years, and still remains one the most popular names of all time. It certainly has ruled the world! For any little boy you want to bring laughter into the world, and even into your life—Isak will be the best fit!
There has not been a name from the East more integrated and accepted worldwide than Aaron. Perfect for a young one who has been active in your belly throughout the pregnancy, it is an indication that he may be energetic and a chatterbox! Meaning “high mountain or “exalted”, this name is perfect for a second born son. Some know the religious roots of this name, but a brief snippet for those who don’t: Aaron is known for having been the spokesman for his brother Moses, despite his being younger. Little known fact, Moses rarely spoke to the Pharaoh in Egypt as he was ashamed of his speech impediment. Aaron picked up the slack and was more than happy to lend a hand in the freedom fight. Pretty cool huh?
If you are excited and expecting a bright little boy, this name would be perfect for him. Doubling as a classic and ultra-masculine name, Aaron is the perfect compromise. Any sports-obsessed dad will be on board, your little one will surely rock the field (or court)!
For those who have South American heritage, or just love the idea that their little girl is “like a lady” this name would be a great one! Your in-laws and the soon-to-be grandparents, will love the classic ease of this precious baby girl name. Pronounced with a quick roll of the tongue “Marta” is a nice medium between elegance and uniqueness. Derived also from the name “Martha”, this spelling adds a youthful feeling. If your sweet daughter is sure to inherit big, brown eyes, and curly hair to match—look no further! Marta is a perfect addition to a military family that travels often, it sounds sweet in any language really. You will thank me later, I promise!
I have to admit, this one turns out to be among my favorite baby girl names. If you are not satisfied with the name “Grace”, this name is an excellent choice. Adding an authentic Spanish twist, this name is pronounced “Gra-thee-ela”, after the king of Spain had a speech impediment and the whole country began pronouncing all “cee” sounds with his impediment! Exceedingly rich and regal, if you want a name that is sure to be uncommon yet strikingly beautiful, “Graciela” should be your top choice. It is most suitable for a little girl with whom mommy experienced plenty of heartburn with; this child is sure to have a full head of hair! Thick, cute curls compliment the origins and distinct beauty of this name. A rare jewel, you will hard-pressed to find this name on your friends list (unless they are reading this article, then you can totally ignore that). Its alternate spellings include “Graziella” in Italy, or “Gracilia” in Portugal.
You will be hard-pressed to find this name on your friends lists. Pronounced “Eye-la”, it’s no wonder millions are falling in love with this name. For those who would love to showcase their Scottish heritage in a subtle way, Isla is shown to be one of the most popular baby names in Scotland. Isla is likely to be the most popular girl in school, not only because she is the most beautiful (which never hurts!) but mostly because she is the kindest. For the gentle spirit and well-tempered child, the Spanish meaning “devoted to God” adds a religious subtlety to lovely name. Baby girls with this name are most likely to be energetic, adventurous, and generous. Every time you say her name, or hear her cute feet pitter-patting down the hall, you will be reminded of the light and joy she brings to your family.
For the baby boy who is sure to be a fire-brand and ultra-passionate personality, Kai is a great fit. Those who have this name are likely to be very active in the arts, expressing themselves creatively as often as possible. If you see art school or even music in your child’s future, give him a name that is worthy of him. Those with the name Kai also tend to be social butterflies. In Hawaii, the young boys named Kai are very strong swimmers and are drawn to water activities. Creativity will never be lacking in any boy named Kai, he will be the life of every social gathering; commanding attention at will and with ease. If there is any indication your boy has been tap-dancing in your belly, look no further than this name.
For the Greek enthusiasts, you may not have been drawn to the name “Aphrodite” for your little girl (and truth be told, you shouldn’t!) Eleni, is the next best thing as it has strong Greek roots with the meaning, “light”. In Russia, the same name means “Shining light”. For the daughter you know will have a brilliant smile and glowing personality, this name is perfect. Those who have this name will certainly lead the pack, and serve as a guide for those around them. So don’t be surprised when you hear through the years that your little girl is “bossy”, it’s just the honing of her natural leadership skills. Teach her to pair her strength with gentleness, and you have a true force of nature on your hands! Eleni will be a wonderful balance of passionate and intuitive.
The singer Adele is probably the most well-known woman with this name. Her powerful voice is no surprise as her name is said to be given to those who have an inspirational character. In the language of love (French) her means “the one who is noble”—for the girl you know will be an influential woman, Adele is your best bet. Plus, she won’t just be a dry, bossy politician—her name also means “good humor”. You’re likely to have a solid mix of beauty, brains, and charm on your hands. Fathers, watch out, you may want to rally the troops for the guys who are sure to fall at her feet. Aside from her amazing personality, Adele is going to be hit in pretty much every place she travels as her name will be very easy to pronounce and it sounds great in several languages!
Did you hear that? No? Such is the sweet sound of peace and quiet. For the child who is going to ‘sleep like a baby’ (Honestly—I have no idea who came up with this—we all know babies don’t sleep!) Irina is a great name. Meaning, ‘full of peace” this child will be surprisingly content and won’t give you too much trouble In fact, among her siblings she is the most likely to be the peacemaker! Leading seamlessly of course to a lifelong commitment of diplomacy--eh-hem Secretary of State perhaps? Aside from her amazing personality traits, Irina will be crazy-talented too! I would recommend getting her into ballet or gymnastics as soon as she can walk. Many elite figure skaters, models, and dancers share this name. Admittedly, that part may have much more to do with the Russian roots--but let’s go with it!
Another beautiful Russian favorite is Mila. Most known in the United States after the Ukrainian-American actress Mila Kunis, made her debut in sitcom that 70s Show. Mila is the shorter version of the European name “Milena”. Both are beautiful, but my preference goes for the short and sweet. Mila can be spelled as “Milah” or “Milla” so have your pick. While the name does not have a direct meaning, my research tells me it is closest to the “warmth or grace”. Pretty much it’s that soft, fuzzy feeling you get inside when you see the kids hugging and laughing instead of eating flour out of the canister. Ah, the joys of parenthood. Mila is for the baby girl who will inherit all of your grace with a dash of your sass!
Alright folks, Levi will be quite the character, after all Sheryl Crow and Matthew McConaughey named their sons “Levi”--it means ‘joined in harmony’. Slated to be the among the Top 20 most popular names in 2018, you will not regret choosing this charming name for your baby boy. With significant Hebrew roots, the name Levi was given to Jacob’s third-born son in the Bible and the apostle Matthew was named Levi before he began to follow Jesus. Aside from religious meanings--there’s Levi Strauss Jeans, ‘nuff said. If you like biblical names and meanings, this name is great, plus it will be a HUGE hit with grandparents and in-laws alike. For the son you hope will have his father’s charm, mother’s eyes, and larger-than-life personality--here ya go! Levi is easy to spell, pronounce, and has great stories attached.
Most widely recognized as the illustrious Audrey Hepburns’s name in Roman Holiday, this baby girl name is still a rare find. A gem in its own right, Aanya can be spelled “Anja” or “Anya”. For a more exotic flare, throw the extra “a” in there and you have got a recipe for undeniable loveliness. This name is most known as a alternative of a Russian name meaning “graceful”-- which fitting because pretty much every woman who has this name is a world-renown model! Hello heart-breaker. Dads, get ready to fend off prom-dates with a nine-iron. Also little known fact, in the Disney movie “Anastasia”, her nickname was “Anya”. A name fitting for a princess, or model, or pretty any elegant damsel.
In the South you really can't go very far without knowing an Avery--boy or girl. This name has become increasingly popular for little girls and in the coming years that won't be changing much.Originally derived from the French name of “Alfred”--and is often noted as a mix between “Ivory” and “Ava”.
Super cute, and never shy of notable pop reference--Avery is the brother of protagonist Charlotte in the book and cinema favorite Charlotte’s Web. I have never met an Avery who wasn’t top of their class or just a general favorite, which makes sense because this name means “wise, counselor, or ruler of with elf-wisdom”. Likely to be a tad “know-it-all” as a kid, definitely hone those qualities and you will have a genius on your hands.
Adding a little Bohemian flare to the mix--okay a lot of Bohemian flare, this name is climbing the charts in popularity this year! Wren is the perfect name for a hippie love-child, it has Welsh roots that translate into “charmer of the birds”. I mean how cute is that! You can also use pet names, like “my little bird” and it still fits. This name also works wonderfully as a first or second middle name. For any family that is really into music, this could be the world’s next songstress. It is a unisex name, so it works as a first name for you boy as well. I think this name is absolutely adorable and is sure to be a favorite among your friends. Who can deny little Wren anything? I mean look at those eyes!
Drop the “h” and move on over Leah! This is an ultra-feminine version of the male name “Lee”, and it still has a nice southern charm to it. It has always been an American favorite, with celebrities like Lea Michele from Glee and Filipina star of “Miss Saigon” Lea Salonga. I would venture to say this is another cute hippie name, throw a flower crown on her head and watch her blossom into the sweetest thing you have ever laid eyes on. The child who has this name will be full of energy and always willing to go on an adventure as she will have a wanderlust spirit. Her name means “meadow” so be sure to buy her tons of skirts and dresses to twirl around in!
I know , I know. How can you look at a tiny baby and say “Ah, Rosalinda…” Wait--how could you not? Rosalinda, has a timeless beauty to it, and goes beyond the basic Rose or Rosie. Rosalinda carries a regal elegance with it. For the little girl who is sure to “do-the-most” (like her mother) “Rosalinda” is brilliant name to bestow upon her. This name means “pretty rose”-- so she will be nothing short of a darling! Perfect for those with Italian or Spanish heritage, if your daughter will inherit shining teeth and thick black curls you really don’t have much of an option. Rosalinda is a fun and illustrious girl, with a huge heart and contagious laugh. Everyone will want to be friends with her, and how could they resist? She is such a beauty inside and out.
Among the most popular names in America since the start of Dawson's Creek in ‘98, this name is nothing short of a timeless favorite. Although his name is well known as a surname, it still works as a striking first name, Dawson is handsome guy, who has charm and wit--never a heartbreaker and always a lover. He is the kind of guy who doubles as an All-American footballer and the apple of his mama’s eye. He may not be the most popular in school, but he will be the most respected because he is a hard-worker. He may even bring a strong creative energy to the house so watch out for any musical inclinations. This name is also another Southern favorite, so feel free to add it to your repertoire.
Topping our list in timeless, adorable names is “Kinsley” taking the regal meaning of “Kings meadow” in the Old English. Kinsley made number #86 in 2016, so it is sure to still be a all time favorite. This is certainly a classy name for a gal with sass and sweetness to balance. Kinsley is can be spelled in so many cute ways: “Kinslee, Kinslea, or Kinsly”. The first occurrence of this name was most likely in the Bible Belt, c’mon it’s one of the finest Southern names out there! She will have a cute drawl and irresistible grace and charm, you just bet your bottom dollar! This name pairs wonderfully with single-syllable middle names, like “Kinsley Ann”, or even “Kinsley Jade”. Take great care not to bog down her name too much, it is already unique on its’ own. Less is more here.
Welp, that’s all she wrote...literally.
For the child you would give the world on a platter, look no further than this list of timeless beautiful baby names.
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