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20 Fastest-Rising Baby Names for Boys

By michellehorton |

Just as I did with the Fastest-Rising Baby Names for Girls, I scoured through the boys’ column to find which names jumped up the ranks at high speed.

Some of these are predictable (such as alternate spellings of popular names, and our fascination with the letter “X”), some indicate fast-rising trends, and others are unique and lovely names that more and more parents are beginning to recognize.

Most of these names are still in the #200 – #800 range — not quite superstar status — and many entered the Top 1,000 list for the first time in 2011. But all of them increased their rank by 100 to 400 spots in only a year’s time, so they just might be topping the charts eventually:

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Fastest-Rising Baby Names for Boys


The name "Brantley" rose a whopping 419 places from where it ranked in 2010. And it follows quite a few trends that I saw for boy's names in 2011: It's a surname, it has a musical/pop-culture reference (country star Brantley Gilbert), and it's a "B" name.

Other "B" names that spiked in popularity this year: Brenton, Braylen/Braylin, Bruce, Breysen, Bensen, Benton, Brecken and Barrett. Bentley is also continuing a rise to the top.

Photo: @BrantleyGilbert

More boy names that saw a notable increase in 2011 (besides those mentioned above):

  • Declan
  • Archer
  • Jensen
  • Lionel
  • Nico
  • Nash
  • Arjun
  • Cannon
  • Ace
  • Bo
  • Brooks
  • Maverick
  • Milo
  • Amare (African for “handsome”)
  • Arabic names like Abdullah and Samir
  • Matias (as well as Matteo/Mateo)
  • Clay
  • Maverick
  • Blaine

As far as the Top 20, Mason (now #2) and Liam (now #15) saw the biggest increases.


More baby-naming goodness:




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About michellehorton



Michelle Horton is the founder of Early Mama, an award-winning site that proves young motherhood doesn’t have to define or limit us. When not writing, she’s typically pretending to be a superhero in her 4-year-old son’s imaginative play. Read bio and latest posts → Read Michelle's latest posts →

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12 thoughts on “20 Fastest-Rising Baby Names for Boys

  1. Amanda R. says:

    Wow, I don’t like any of those. Is it just me, or do people just not know how to spell these days? I’m much more of a traditionalist, I guess.

  2. Janet says:

    @Amanda R., No, you’re not alone. There are so many names on this list that are just yuck. There’s something about intentionally misspelling a name that just makes the parents look immature and silly.

  3. KSK says:

    I completely agree-these are the kind of names that I hate. The only one I kind of like is Hayes. These trendy boy names are just so pretentious to me. I like classic boy names, spelled the traditional way.

  4. jessica says:

    I pity the boy that was named Enoch or Mustafa or any other kid that was named after the parents favorite liquor ie Hennesey Covousier etc…

  5. alex says:

    my son has a K name, but it isn’t a “made up” name, Keaton. We call him Keats, his dad likes poetry, and his name was inspired by John Keats.

  6. ailsa vernon says:

    I have a three yr old named cannon, we had heard of cannan and the cannanites had ties to egypt, my partner is from there, but we changed it slightly. We also have a five yr old boy Tanna.

  7. mary says:

    My boys’ names are Dodge Evan and Berrit Ethan

  8. Liv says:

    Ok, most of these names are just awful, especially the K names. But I must confess – I never knew that Winnie the Pooh’s name is actually Winston. He will forever be known as that now in my house.

  9. Julie says:

    I disagree with the traditional spelling of names. I feel that it shows creativity and uniqueness to be differen’t my sons name is Jakob and i love the spelling!!

  10. patrice says:

    Well my boys names are Rowdy,Gunner & Stryker and I hope to never see them on a “Top” anything list!! I think they are unique & I LOVE them!!!

  11. Amy says:

    I’m sorry but people have traditional names for a reason, bc they have meaning & usually have family ties. My sons name is Jacob John bc his grandpa picked his first name & my best friend has a tradition in his family to give boys double saints names (biblical). These poor kids with crazy made up names; Jaiden, Kaiden, Taden, Raden, Shmaden… Seriously people stop screwing with your kids, it’s only hurting them

  12. Anne says:

    I’m very much a traditionalist and the Irish names of Rory, Declan and Liam and definitely right up there for me along with my little Kevin Patrick!

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