For some of us, the only thing harder than having a baby is naming a baby. Do you go old school or gender-neutral, do you pick a family name, pick something popular or come up with your own unique variation? There's just so much to consider.
Parents who are concerned about trendy names (either because they want to pick a cool, popular name or because they want to avoid more common names), may wish for a crystal ball. If only such a thing could tell them whether or not a name that's not-so-popular now will be shouted all over the playgrounds in a few years.
We don't have a crystal ball, but we do have data, and it can help us establish which names are going to be picking up steam over the next 12 months.
The Social Security Administration doesn't just release the top 100 baby names for a year, it tracks way deeper than that, and it keeps tabs on which names have the greatest changes in popularity year over year. When we combine that data with overall American naming trends (lots of vowels for girls, names ending in 'n' for boys) and the formula Names.org uses to track so-called "wildcard names" (those that weren't in the top 10 list last year but are mathematically primed for a stratospheric rise) we can get as close as possible to predicting the future (of kindergarten roll calls, at least).
These are 20 baby names you'll probably be hearing around town by this time next year.
- Oaklynn/ Oaklyn/ Oaklee
These names are on the rise, and you'll probably meet a baby with a name from this list in the next year or so, but it'll take a lot for any of these names to beat the trendiest baby name of all time. That spot still belongs to Linda.