Names that work for boys, girls and non-binary babies are becoming increasingly popular. Some reasons parents are choosing these, include wanting to break gender stereotypes and not wanting to impose these on their child. It could be due to not knowing the gender of the baby or which gender they will identify as. Lastly, there may just be the desire for more a unique and interesting name for their child. A gender neutral name can help a child stand out and be noticed for their uniqueness.
Luckily there are books such as Melanie Mannarino’s “The Best Gender-Neutral Baby Name Book.” In the book, Mannarino writes that in 2017, 15% of babies were given gender neutral names, a number that’s nearly doubled in twenty years. She writes that we can point to cultural shifts, celebrity influence, a rejection of our own childhoods when there were five Jennifers in one class, and basic personal preference as the cause for the rise.
It seems gender neutral names are the ones that are most unique and unconventional, derived from such inspirations as city names, nature or have been totally invented from scratch in recent years. This means some of these names haven’t been associated with any particular gender yet.
This can make the whole process of choosing your baby name even more fun.
Gender fluid names in McCrindle’s Top 100 baby names report
Each year, McCrindle releases their report on the Top 100 baby names for that year, usually reflective of what the parents’ interests were at the time. Certainly, for the current generation of babies, names are reflecting a world becoming more and more gender fluid. In the 2022 McCrindle report, the only two names on the list that appear on both the girls’ and boys’ list in the same spelling are Charlie and Riley.
There were three names that were used as boy and girls names with minor variations. These were Aria and Ari, Ellie for girls, Eli for boys, Billie for girls, Billy for boys and Harriet for girls and Harry for boys.
Names that have traditionally been girls names are being interchanged for boys’ names. These include Harper, Frankie, Mackenzie, Quinn and Peyton.
Boys names such as Luka, Bailey, Jesse, Dylan and Bodhi are also increasingly being used to name daughters.
Common unisex names
Jessie, Marion, Jackie, Kerry, Frankie, Carey, Jamie, Kris, Robbie, Sammie Charlie, Billie, and Dylan
Rare unisex names
Unique unisex names for your child to stand out from the crowd popular include Solaris, Rumi, Trinity, Tatum, Zane, River, Arden, Armani, Justice.
Briar, Clove, Jupiter, Cypress, Ocean, Revel
Celebrity influences on gender neutral names include Jagger, Lennon, Reese, Charlie, Harper, Bodhi and Winston. However it is also the celebrity babies’ names that are providing some much eyebrow raising inspiration. Who can forget when Beyonce announced her child’s name Blue Ivy, and now Rumi for her second child. Both are names that any gender can use.
Take Comedian Kel Mitchell and Asia Lee who named their baby boy Honor, who was a little brother to Allure, Lyric and Wisdom.
Other popular names that celebrities have chosen for their children include Dylan, Sailor, August, Taylor.
More trending names that work for both boys and girls
Some trendy ideas for gender neutral baby names include Riley, Logan, Jordan Avery Cameron, Rowan, Phoenix, George, Sterling, River, Phoenix, Azariah, Dakota, Morgan, Alex, Ashley, Bailey, Harley, Finley. Stevie, Lennon, Charleigh, Remington
Remember that you can also modify the spelling of the name to give it your own creativity, making it even more distinctive.
Why not plug the name in to our Huggies Baby Name Generator to look into the meaning and origin behind the name to help you determine whether it may be the right fit for. For example, a gender fluid name idea, Valentine, means valiant, brave, strong. Another one,Tai, is a Chinese name meaning “a great extreme” while Oakley means from the valley with oak trees.
However, don’t be surprised if some names you enter doesn’t bring up a result, due to them being such new inventions. These include names such as Atlas, North or London.
More inspiration for gender neutral names
Please find below some more ideas if you are needing some:
Try the Huggies Baby Name Generator to find the perfect name for your baby. With thousands of names to choose from, be inspired by popular, unique and original baby names.
Written by Tracey Cheung, April 2023. Tracey is a freelance writer with particular interest in writing about topics that promote health and wellness in the community. As a mother she has personal experience in writing content that helps other parents.
Last Published* February, 2024
*Please note that the published date may not be the same as the date that the content was created and that information above may have changed since.