The Top 20 Baby Names of the Year

The latest baby name data from the Social Security Administration is out now—and it turns out we could almost copy and paste the whole top 10 list from 2014 to 2015 (note: the just-released in 2016 data tracks trends from the previous year). Both Noah and Emma ruled the roost again this year—and other than a teensy bit of shuffling and two new names (welcome, Benjamin and Harper!), the top 10 is exactly the same.

Digging deeper, there’s also little change in the top 20. Aubrey dropped out for girls, replaced by the pretty virtue name Grace, while timeless boys’ classic Joseph dropped out of the top 20 for the first time in forever, replaced by the cheerful Oliver, which rose 13 places to #19.

    So what’s tops? Check out the most popular baby names for 2015.

    1. Noah & Emma Noah and Emma retained the top spots for the 2nd year in a row. Emma, a German name that means universal, has been on the rise ever since Rachel and Ross picked it for their kiddo in the final seasons of Friends, and Noah, of course, has been around since the Old Testament.

    2. Liam & Olivia Liam, a variation on #5 William, and Olivia, a former #1 name, retained their runner-up spots.

    3. Mason & Sophia Mason and Sophia stayed steady at #3—Mason skyrocketed toward the top after the Kardashian clan picked it for one of their own, and the lovely Sophia was the most recent #1 before Emma.

    4. Jacob & Ava Jacob stayed at #4 this year, after its Twilight-induced run at the top, while Ava moved up a spot.

    5. William & Isabella Two time-honored names round out the top 5: William, a long-running royal pick that means protector, and isabella, the Spanish version of Elizabeth, which means “consecrated to God.”

    6. Ethan & Mia Ethan is coming down from its peak at #3 a few years back, while Mia, the Scandinavian take on Maria stayed steady at #6.

    7. James & Abigail James is a classic royal name that means supplanter, while Abigail means joyful.

    8. Alexander & Emily Alexander has held steady at #8 for the past 3 years, while Emily continues its very slow descent from its #1 perch in the early 21st century.

    9. Michael & Charlotte After decades and decades in the top 5, could Michael be finally on its way out of favor? It dropped two slots to #5, while moved up a spot, probably spurred by the adorable new royal across the pond.

    10. Benjamin & Harper These two newbies to the top 10 are an interesting pair—Benjamin has been a boys’ favorite since Biblical times, while Harper is an occupational name that swapped from blue to pink.

    11. Elijah & Madison After falling just short of the top spot, Madison has now dropped out of the top 10 baby names, while its companion Elijah has been stable just outside the top 10 for the past several years. 

    12. Daniel & Amelia Daniel dropped out of the top 10 this year—but has been in the top 50 names for more than a century. Amelia has been on a major upswing since the start of the 21st century.  

    13. Aiden & Elizabeth One of the few timeless girls’ names, Elizabeth, comes in at #13 with this variant spelling of the Irish classic Aidan, which is continuing its slow descent from the top of the charts. 

    14. Logan & Sofia If you combine this alternative spelling and the more traditional Sophia, this name really does rule the roost. Nature-themed Logan has been in the top 25 for the past decade. 

    15. Matthew & Evelyn Matthew peaked in the top 10 from the 1970s to 1990s, but is currently on a slow decline.With its sweet meaning (wished-for child), and Ava/Eva feel, Evelyn is expected to hit the top 10 within the next few years. 

    16. Lucas & Avery Lucas is still on an upward trajectory—and should continue its upward climb, thanks to its connection to the creator of Star Wars and the fact that the lead character from the original trilogy bore Lucas nickname, Luke. After peaking at #12 in 2013, Avery has fallen slightly. 

    17. Jackson & Chloe Surname moniker Jackson holds steady at #17 for a second year, and Chloe jumps back up a spot on the list. 

    18. David & Ella David has been a top 20 pick for decades, while Ella skyrocketed to popularity at the turn of the 21st century. 

    19. Oliver & Grace Two newbies in the top 20, Oliver and Grace continue the trend toward more timeless and traditional names regaining popularity. 

    20. Jayden & Victoria Trendy pick Jayden continues its swift descent down the charts, while classic hit Victoria continues its stable run in the top 30. 

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