How popular is the baby name Kristen in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Kristen and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Kristen.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Kristen

Number of Babies Named Kristen

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Kristen

Name Quotes for the Weekend #37

quote from bridesmaids

From the movie Bridesmaids, bridesmaid Annie (played by Kristen Wiig) being kicked out of first class by flight attendant Steve:

Annie: Whatever you say, Stove.
Steve: It’s Steve.
Annie: “Stove” — what kinda name is that?
Steve: That’s not a name. My name is Steve.
Annie: Are you an appliance?
Steve: No I’m a man, and my name is Steve.

From Mohammed most popular baby name in Israel in The Jerusalem Post:

The report [from the Central Bureau of Statistics] also noted that in 2012 only 36 boys were given the name Ovadia. However, following the death of spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef in 2013, 117 babies were given this name and in 2014, 209 newborns were named after the rabbi.

From Why old Japanese women have names in katakana at RocketNews24:

Basically, the katakana names given to baby girls born prior to the 1900s were a result of gender discrimination. The ability to read was not prevalent amongst the poor of that time period, so many families would pay a scholar to help them decide on a splendid name in meaningful kanji for their sons. However, that same measure was almost never taken for daughters. […] Only girls belonging to the most wealthy and noble families, such as the daughters of samurai, would be given names in kanji as an indication of their status.

From Today Translations’ Name Audit Services page:

But more offbeat names can pose problems. How about the Rooneys’ Kai? Kai means ‘pier’ in Estonian, ‘probably’ in Finnish, ‘ocean’ in Hawaiian and Japanese, ‘willow tree’ in the native American language of Navajo, and ‘stop it’ in Yoruba.

And Suri, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes’ daughter, means ‘pickpocket’ in Japanese, ‘turned sour’ in French and ‘horse mackerels’ in Italian.

From Arabic as an accessory by Naaila Mohammed in The Islamic Monthly:

Arabic, as a spoken language and written text, is something the Western gaze is enamored by, but also terrified of. A quick Google search renders a flood of results about the popularity of Arabic in the non-Arab world. From warnings of things to keep in mind so you don’t end up with a failed Arabic tattoo to white mothers seeking out trendy Arabic baby names, there are numerous examples of how Arabic is made palatable to the white gaze. At the same time, you will find horror stories of students detained for carrying flashcards and study materials in Arabic on a plane, or of a Brooklyn father stabbed by two teenagers who overheard him speaking in Arabic while walking home with his wife and 8-year-old son.

From What Makes a Baby Name Trendy? by Anna of Waltzing More Than Matilda:

I have a non-trendy classic name which is still reasonably popular, and not only has it failed to provide me with a magically charmed life where nothing ever went wrong, its impact has been minimal at best. Meanwhile, my peers with the trendy names of our generation, such as Jodi and Jason, don’t seem to have had their lives ruined by their names.

From Baby names fall from fashion like autumn leaves in The Asahi Shimbun (a Japanese newspaper):

I am a Showa-born man, and here’s my pet peeve: This year, only three girl names ending with “ko” made the top 100 list. Back when I was a schoolboy, the mimeographed list of the names of kids in my class was full of girl names ending with “ko.”

Shigehiko Toyama, a scholar of English literature, once recalled this episode: One day, he received a letter from an American person he had never met, and the envelope was addressed to “Miss Shigehiko Toyama.” He understood the reason immediately. This American had some knowledge of things Japanese, and must have presumed Toyama was a woman because his given name ends with “ko.” An episode such as this is now part of ancient history.

From The Women’s Suffrage Movement: A Reference Guide 1866-1928 (2003) By Elizabeth Crawford:

Lamb, Aeta Adelaide (1886-1928) Born in Demerara, where her father was a botanist; she was named Aeta after a palm he had discovered there.

Demerara was a colony in British Guiana, and aeta (or æta) palm refers to Mauritia flexuosa, a South American palm tree.

Want to see more quotes like these? Check out the name quotes category.

Name Quotes for the Weekend #28

Keira Knightly quote about  her misspelled name

From an interview with Keira Knightley in Elle (UK):

Keira also revealed that she was never intended to be called Keira.

‘I was meant to be named “Kiera”, after a Russian ice skater who was on the TV one day. My dad fancied her and nicked her name for me. But it was my mum who went to register my birth, and she accidentally spelled “ei” instead of “ie” because my mum’s crap at spelling.

‘Apparently, when she came back he said: “WHAT THE F*CK? You’ve spelt her name wrong!” What were they going to do, though? Once it’s on the piece of paper, it’s on the piece of paper. And that’s me. A spelling error.’

From There’s Something About Nutella (about the French parents who tried to name their baby Nutella) by lawyer Wes Anderson:

If only the parents lived in the United States, then they may likely have realized their dream. While many European countries place various restrictions on baby names, American parents may generally use a trademark as a personal name, so long as it is a word mark and both parents consent to the name. Brand loyalty may have some limits abroad, but the courts on our shores would hardly object to baby Nutella.

From Parents seek unique names for their children in The Japan News:

Under the Family Registration Law, about 3,000 kanji can be used for a person’s name, including joyo kanji (kanji designated for common use) and kanji exclusively used for people’s names. Hiragana and katakana can be used as well. However, there are no rules regarding how a kanji character should be read in a name or how long the name can be.

In recent years, more and more variations are showing up in children’s names with nonstandard pronunciations apparently becoming prominent. For example, the kanji “kokoro” (heart) is often read “ko” these days, while “ai” (love) is read “a.”


At one kindergarten in Kanagawa Prefecture, teachers write down the phonetic readings of all the new pupils’ names on the roll before the entrance ceremony to check how they should be read.

“It’s a shock for parents to hear their children’s names read out incorrectly,” a staff member of the kindergarten said.

Tamago Club, a magazine for expecting mothers published by Benesse Corp., is calling on readers to avoid names whose kanji readings are too different from the norm.

From the book The Leonardo DiCaprio Album by Brian J. Robb:

Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio was born in Los Angeles on 11th November 1974 to burnt-out hippie parents who named him after the Renaissance artist Leonardo Da Vinci. His mother, German-born Irmelin Idenbirken chose her son’s name after feeling him kicking in the womb as she stood in front of a Da Vinci painting in the Uffizi Gallery in Venice, Italy.

From Why We Like Boys Better Than Girls (Or At Least Their Names) by Laura Wattenberg:

Our modern naming age sees lots of names flowing around the gender divide. Some traditional male names, like Micah and Riley, are showing up more and more on the girls’ side. Other names with no traditional gender link, like word names, place names, and surnames, are flipping back and forth or remaining unisex. But even in this fluid, creative naming culture, I challenge you to find a traditionally female name that is given to boys. Much as a reference to running or fighting “like a girl” is taken as an insult, so do we shrink from any hint of girliness in our boys’ names. As a result, the move toward androgyny in baby names turns out to look an awful lot like masculinization.


Names have enormous symbolic power. They send messages. What message would it send to girls if the women of the U.S. Supreme Court were named Raymond, Simon and Elliot instead of Ruth, Sonia and Elena? Just as we may wish for a future where “running like a girl” means “running as fast and long as you can,” I’m rooting for a future where a little Leia is considered just as bold and confident as a girl dressed — or named — like Han.

From the Survivor Wiki page about Neleh Davis, the runner-up from Survivor: Marquesas (2002):

Neleh Dennis was born in Heber City, Utah, and is one of eight siblings (five brothers, Tom, John, Devin, Nathan, and Landon, and two sisters, McKenna and Robyn). She was named after her maternal grandmother, Helen. Same name, only spelled backwards.

From an interview with Dax Shepard [vid] on Ellen:

Ellen: Where does the name Delta come from, was that something you had thought of before?

Dax: So Delta actually–it was a joke, because our first daughter’s name is Lincoln, which is very masculine, so a friend of mine teasingly texted me, “Oh great, what’s this one gonna be, Navy Seal? Delta Force? Green Beret?” And I was reading this text out loud to Kristen, I’m like, “Oh listen to how funny this is, Steve said, what if we named her Delta Force” and I was like…Delta! Delta Bell Shepard, that’s it! And that’s it.

Want to see quote posts #1 through #27? Check out the quote post category. Have a nice weekend, all!

The Name Your Car Formula, for Name Your Car Day

name your car day

Did you know that October 2 is Name Your Car Day?

Some people have no problem coming up with names for their cars. The car in the above photo, for instance, is clearly named Gianni.

But not everyone has it so easy. For those who don’t have a clue which name to choose, here’s a simple formula I came up with.

The Name Your Car Formula

Answer three quick questions:

  • What year was your car made?
  • To you, what gender is the car?
  • At what age did you get the car?

Now check your region’s baby name rankings. If you’re in the U.S., you can find the national rankings on the Popular Baby Names page of the Social Security Administration’s website. (I’ve got all the U.S. rankings from 2000 onward here at NBN.) If you’re in England, the rankings are on the Baby Names page of the Office for National Statistics website. If you’re in Ireland, try a search at the Central Statistics Office website. For other regions, look at Wikipedia’s Popular Names page. (Use the links in the footnotes.)

Find the set of rankings that corresponds to your car’s YEAR and GENDER. Then scroll down until you find the ranking that matches the AGE at which you got the car. The name with that ranking is now the name of your car.

Want to see how it works? Here are a bunch of examples (using U.S. name rankings):

  • You have a 2009 Nissan Altima. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 33. So you go to the 2009 girl name rankings, scroll down to #33, and find the name Gabriella.
  • You have a 1998 Toyota Camry. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 44. So you go to the 1998 girl name rankings, scroll down to #44, and find the name Savannah.
  • You have a 1973 Dodge Dart. To you, the car is male. You got it at the age of 20. So you go to the 1973 boy name rankings, scroll down to #20, and find the name Steven.
  • You have a 2011 Lincoln Navigator. To you, the car is male. You got it at the age of 51. So you go to the 2011 boy name rankings, scroll down to #51, and find the name Jeremiah.
  • You have a 1992 Isuzu Trooper. To you, the car is male. You got it at the age of 19. So you go to the 1992 boy name rankings, scroll down to #19, and find the name Anthony.
  • You have a 1986 Mercury Marquis. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 41. So you go to the 1986 girl name rankings, scroll down to #41, and find the name Kristen.
  • You have a 1953 Buick Skylark. To you, the car is male. You got it at the age of 65. So you go to the 1953 boy name rankings, scroll down to #65, and find the name Billy.
  • You have a 2005 Volkswagen Jetta. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 38. So you go to the 2005 girl name rankings, scroll down to #38, and find the name Rachel.
  • You have a 1989 Ford Mustang. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 22. So you go to the 1989 girl name rankings, scroll down to #22, and find the name Michelle.
  • You have a 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle. To you, the car is female. You got it at the age of 31. So you go to the 1968 girl name rankings, scroll down to #31, and find the name Wendy.

What’s Your Car’s Name?

Using this formula, what’s the name of your car?

If you don’t have time right now to look it up, just leave me a comment with the three facts — year, gender, age — and I’ll look it up for you and write back with your car’s new name.

P.S. Please share this post with your friends today! We don’t want anyone’s car to feel left out on Name Your Car Day.

Baby Born During Cooking Class, Named After Barley

On 17 September 1984, cooking instructor Diane Avoli was in the middle of teaching her students how to make stuffed cabbage when she went into labor.

She gave birth to a baby girl–her seventh daughter–just a few minutes later.

After the birth, the cooking students helped Diane and her husband choose a name. Here’s how Diane explained it:

They were saying that we should name her after something we were cooking, and someone jokingly suggested cabbage patch, but someone else said ‘pearl’ after a kind of barley we were cooking, so we picked that for a middle name.

The baby was named Kristen Pearl.

(According to Diane’s website, she has eight children. Her eighth is a boy.)


  • “Class Gets Real Childbirth Lesson.” Tuscaloosa News 20 Sept. 1984: 3.
  • “Good thing the cooks could boil water.” Wilmington Morning Star 24 Sept. 1984: 2C.

Baby Name Needed – Name for Baby Girl #4

A reader named Darlene is having trouble coming up with a name for her fourth baby girl (due in 2 months). Her first three daughters are Whitney Anne, Presley Kaye, and Gracey Dale. She and her husband have come up with possibilities like Lindsey, Kristen, Nicole, Jenna, Carley, Valerie and Meloney — but none of them have really emerged as favorites.

What do you think, readers? Whitney, Presley, Gracey, and … what?

My opinion is that the fourth daughter’s name ought to continue the pattern: 2-syllable first name ending with an “ee”-sound, then a 1-syllable middle name. Trying something new at this point might give rise to jealousy.

With that in mind, I think the following first names might work: Ainsley, Annie, Bailey, Chelsea, Elsie, Finley, Hadley, Harley, Jody, Josie, Kacey, Lainey, Lilly, Marley, Riley or Zoe.

For middle names, I came up with Beth, Bree, Claire, Faith, Hope, Jade, Jane, Kate, Paige, Reese, Rose, Sage and Tess.

As for combinations… Ainsley Jane? Riley Claire? Zoe Rose? Marley Kate?

Please leave a comment with your suggestions for Darlene.