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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Rihanna

Number of Babies Named Rihanna

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Rihanna

Biggest Changes in Girl Name Popularity, 2014

Which girl names increased and decreased the most in popularity from 2013 to 2014?

Below are two versions of each list. My version looks at raw number differences and takes all 19,067 girl names on the 2014 list into account. The SSA’s version looks at ranking differences and covers the top 1,000 girl names (roughly).

Biggest Increases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Olivia, +1,308 babies (18,366 to 19,674)
  2. Harper, +1,296 (8,268 to 9,564)
  3. Nora, +1,206 (3,502 to 4,708)
  4. Ariana, +1,065 (4,396 to 5,461)
  5. Evelyn, +1,045 (7,647 to 8,692)
  6. Everly, +1,042 (812 to 1,854)
  7. Daleyza, +976 (485 to 1,461)
  8. Skylar, +957 (3,775 to 4,732)
  9. Scarlett, +918 (5,047 to 5,965)
  10. Paisley, +878 (3,595 to 4,473)
  1. Aranza, +3,625 spots (4,232nd to 607th)
  2. Montserrat, +582 (1,153rd to 571st)
  3. Monserrat, +571 (1,162nd to 591st)
  4. Maisie, +462 (1,120th to 658th)
  5. Zendaya, +420 (1,312nd to 892nd)
  6. Karter, +415 (1,383rd to 968th)
  7. Ariadne, +411 (1,212th to 801st)
  8. Daleyza, +358 (585th to 227th)
  9. Thea, +358 (1,134th to 776th)
  10. Remington, +351 (1,036th to 685th)

Here’s what the SSA says about the rise of Aranza: “The Latin soap opera “Por siempre mi amor” was aired on Univision from 2013 to 2015. The show featured a young lead character named Aranza, and obviously had its effect on naming trends last year.” (Aransa was on the 2014 debut list.)

The SSA also noted that Montserrat was the name of “the lead character in a very popular Latin soap opera” — “Lo que la vida me robó,” which aired from 2013 to 2014.

Biggest Decreases

Raw Numbers (Nancy’s list) Rankings (SSA’s list)
  1. Sophia, -2,657 babies (21,147 to 18,490)
  2. Nicole, -827 (3,338 to 2,511)
  3. Samantha, -810 (6,490 to 5,680)
  4. Addison, -762 (7,712 to 6,950)
  5. Hannah, -748 (7,260 to 6,512)
  6. Makayla, -711 (3,270 to 2,559)
  7. Isabella, -623 (17,573 to 16,950)
  8. Alexia, -607 (1,820 to 1,213)
  9. Kaylee, -588 (5,101 to 4,513)
  10. Alexis, -568 (4,756 to 4,188)
  1. Miley, -405 spots (388th to 793rd)
  2. Karly, -330 (991st to 1321st)
  3. Britney, -315 (839th to 1,154th)
  4. Kaya, -244 (760th to 1,004th)
  5. Nahla, -241 (969th to 1,210th)
  6. Rihanna, -233 (956th to 1,189th)
  7. Kaylyn, -227 (982nd to 1,209th)
  8. Makena, -227 (993rd to 1,220th)
  9. Karissa, -224 (968th to 1,192nd)
  10. Sherlyn, -217 (672nd to 889th)

I see at least 3 pop star names (Miley, Rihanna, Britney) on the rankings side.

Finally, here are the big winners and losers from the last few years:

  • 2013: Sadie/Daleyza (biggest increases) and Isabella/Litzy (biggest decreases)
  • 2012: Harper/Arya (biggest increases) and Chloe/Dulce (biggest decreases)
  • 2011: Harper (biggest increase) and Isabella (biggest decrease)
  • 2010: Sophia (biggest increase) and Madison (biggest decrease)

Sources: Change in Popularity from 2013 to 2014, Noah and Emma Top Social Security’s List of Most Popular Baby Names for 2014

U.S. Baby Names 2014: Most Popular Names, Top Girl Name Debuts, Top Boy Name Debuts, Biggest Girl Name Changes, Biggest Boy Name Changes, Top First Letters, Top Lengths


Pop Culture Baby Name Game Results, 2013

Here are the results of the 2013 pop culture baby name game!

But I’m writing them up a bit differently this year — I’m only focusing on 20 big winners.

How did I choose these 20? First, I eliminated all the names that didn’t see increased usage in 2013. Then I eliminated the names that saw relatively small increases in usage. Then I eliminated the names that saw more or less expected increases in usage, given their trajectories.

That left me with about 20 names that became more popular in 2013 due mainly (in some cases entirely) to pop culture influence.

The links will take you to popularity graphs.

1. Jace

  • Increase: +1,649 baby boys (4,692 to 6,341) and +8 baby girls (36 to 44).
  • Inspiration: “Duck Dynasty” character Jason “Jase” Robertson.
  • Even more impressive, the name Jase increased +3,410 and +13.

2. Lincoln

  • Increase: +1,112 baby boys (2,898 to 4,010) and +28 baby girls (33 to 61).
  • Inspiration: The film Lincoln (2012).

3. Ariana

  • Increase: +816 baby girls (3,568 to 4,384).
  • Inspiration: Singer/actress Ariana Grande.
  • 4,384 baby girls is a new all-time high for Ariana. The previous high was 4,322 baby girls in 2007.

4. Everly

  • Increase: +517 baby girls (287 to 804).
  • Inspiration: Celebrity baby Everly, daughter of Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan.

5. Kendrick

  • Increase: +472 baby boys (570 to 1,042).
  • Inspiration: Hip hop artist Kendrick Lamar.
  • 1,042 baby boys is a new all-time high for Kendrick. The previous high was 763 baby boys in 1991.

6. Milan

  • Increase: +333 baby boys (151 to 484) and +89 baby girls (382 to 471).
  • Inspiration: Celebrity baby Milan, son of Shakira and Gerard Pique.

7. George

  • Increase: +194 baby boys (2,328 to 2,522).
  • Inspiration: Royal baby George, son of Prince William and Kate Middleton.

8. Francis

  • Increase: +101 baby boys (429 to 530) and +13 baby girls (44 to 57).
  • Inspiration: The election of Pope Francis.
  • Even more impressive, the name Francisco increased +125.

9. Bruno

  • Increase: +91 baby boys (284 to 375).
  • Inspiration: Singer Bruno Mars.
  • 375 baby boys is a new all-time high for Bruno. The previous high was 353 in 1916.

10. Paul

  • Increase: +78 baby boys (1,939 to 2,017).
  • Inspiration: The death of actor Paul Walker.
  • Walker saw an even bigger increase (+128) but I thought Paul’s rise was more compelling as it went against a decades-long decline in usage.

11. Robin

  • Increase: +48 baby boys (104 to 152).
  • Inspiration: Singer Robin Thicke.

12. Diamond

  • Increase: +41 baby girls (345 to 386).
  • Inspiration: Rihanna song “Diamonds” (2012).

13. Wendy

  • Increase: +37 baby girls (357 to 394).
  • Inspiration: Texas politician Wendy Davis.
  • I’m dying to see how much of Wendy’s increase can be attributed to Texas specifically. The SSA’s state lists haven’t been updated yet, though.

14. Nori

  • Increase: +18 baby girls (11 to 29).
  • Inspiration: Celebrity baby “Nori” (North), daughter of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.
  • 29 baby girls is a new high for Nori. The previous high was 20 in 2009.

15. Primrose

  • Increase: +17 baby girls (17 to 34).
  • Inspiration: Hunger Games (2012) character Primrose Everdeen.
  • Prim, a nickname for Primrose, debuted with 7 baby girls.

16. Marnie

  • Increase: +14 baby girls (13 to 27).
  • Inspiration: “Girls” character Marnie Michaels.

17. Rainbow

  • Increase: +9 baby girls (7 to 16).
  • Inspiration: Celebrity baby Rainbow, daughter of Holly Madison and Pasquale Rotella.

18. Kitai

  • Debuted with 16 baby boys.
  • Inspiration: After Earth (2013) character Kitai Raige.
  • Cypher, the name of another After Earth character, increased +4.

19. Sansa

  • Debuted with 11 baby girls.
  • Inspiration: “Game of Thrones” character Sansa Stark.

20. Malala

  • Debuted with 9 baby girls.
  • Inspiration: Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai.

Did any of the above surprise you?

Past PCBNG results: 2012, 2011, 2010.

’90s Alt-Rock Baby Names

guitarsPearl Jam held a festival over Labor Day weekend to mark the 20th anniversary of the band’s debut album, Ten.

The news reminded me that I’ve seen the name Vedder (the surname of Pearl Jam vocalist Eddie Vedder) on the SSA’s baby name list.

But I didn’t see it on the SSA lists of the early ’90s, which was when when Pearl Jam was at the height of their fame. Nope–Vedder didn’t start popping up until more than a decade later, surprisingly:

  • 2010: 7 baby boys named Vedder
  • 2009: 6 baby boys named Vedder
  • 2008: not listed
  • 2007: 6 baby boys named Vedder
  • 2006: not listed
  • 2005: 5 baby boys named Vedder [debut]
  • 2004: not listed
  • 2003: not listed

The same thing happened to Cobain, surname of Nirvana vocalist Kurt Cobain:

  • 2010: 8 baby boys named Cobain
  • 2009: 5 baby boys named Cobain
  • 2008: 7 baby boys named Cobain
  • 2007: 5 baby boys named Cobain
  • 2006: not listed
  • 2005: 6 baby boys named Cobain
  • 2004: 5 baby boys named Cobain [debut]
  • 2003: not listed

And to Reznor, surname of Trent Reznor of NIN:

  • 2010: 6 baby boys named Reznor
  • 2009: 9 baby boys named Reznor
  • 2008: 8 baby boys named Reznor
  • 2007: not listed
  • 2006: 6 baby boys named Reznor
  • 2005: not listed
  • 2004: 5 baby boys named Reznor [debut]
  • 2003: not listed

Interesting, isn’t it? These names didn’t become trendy while the associated acts were big, but they’ve begun trickling in years after the fact. As if the teens of the ’90s needed a few years to grow up and start having their own kids first.

Contrast this with names like Rihanna, Beyonce, Kanye and Shania. These names became popular on a much larger scale while the corresponding pop stars were hitting it big. Quite a difference.

Source: Pearl Jam Fest Wows With Chris Cornell/Temple of The Dog, Multiple Guest

The Biggest Loser Baby Names

I’m seeing a lot of discussion today about the fastest-rising baby names of 2010. There’s Maci and Bentley (thanks to a reality TV show about pregnant teens), Tiana (thanks to Disney), Kellan (thanks to Twilight), Knox (thanks to Brangelina), and more.

But let’s look at the flip side. Which names fell in 2010? Which were some of the biggest losers?

I’ll give you a hint: Many were once the fast-risers. They became trendy for a little while, thanks to pop culture (e.g. a singer, a band, a movie, a book). But when that influence began to fade, the names began to fall.

  • Ciara, down 79 spots (singer Ciara)
  • Jonas, down 80 spots (musicians Jonas Brothers)
  • Marley, down 85 spots (movie Marley & Me)
  • Kimora, down 90 spots (model Kimora Lee Simmons)
  • Rihanna, down 198 spots (singer Rihanna)
  • Analia, down 472 spots (telenovela El Rostro de AnalĂ­a)

This group even includes the names of the president’s daughters, Sasha (down 84 spots) and Malia (down 111 spots), whose names have not been in the news as much since 2008 and 2009.

Sources: SSA’s Change in Name Popularity page, “Maci” and “Bentley” soar in baby name game

Most Popular Baby Names in Malta in 2009

The last time I wrote about popular baby names in Malta was twp years ago. It’s time for an update!

A total of 4,143 babies were born in Malta in 2009. (In 2006, the number was 3,885.) These were the most popular baby names last year:

Boy Names

  1. Luke/Luca (92 babies)
  2. Matthew/Matthias/Matteo (84)
  3. Jake (59)
  4. Aiden (53)
  5. Jaden/Jayden (51)
  6. John/Giovanni/Jean (48)
  7. Kaiden/Kayden (47)
  8. Michael/Miguel/Mikele (46)
  9. Nicholas/Nick (42)
  10. Isaac/Izaak (39)
  11. Nathan (38)
    • Liam/William (36)
    • Gabriel (36)
  12. Benjamin/Ben (35)
    • Alexander/Alessandro/Alejandro (34)
    • Zachary/Zak (34)
    • James (33)
    • Daniel (33)
  13. Denzel/Danzil (31)
  14. Keiran (29)
    • Andre/Andrew/Andrea (26)
    • Sven (26)
  15. Julian (25)
    • Kyle (24)
    • Joseph/Giuseppe/Beppe (24)

Girl Names

  1. Maria/Mariah/Marie (82 babies)
  2. Elena/Ylenia/Ella (79)
  3. Christina/Kristina/Krista (63)
  4. Eliza/Elizabeth/Lisa (52)
  5. Amy/Aimee (49)
  6. Julia/Gulia (45)
    • Maya/Maia (39)
    • Emma (39)
  7. Martina (33)
  8. Rihanna/Rhiana (32)
  9. Jasmine/Yasmine (31)
  10. Keira (29)
  11. Mikela/Michaela (28)
  12. Jade (27)
  13. Hannah/Anna/Ann (26)
    • Nicole (25)
    • Mireille (25)
    • Hailey/Hayley (25)
  14. Sarah/Sara (24)
    • Emilia (22)
    • Lea (22)
  15. Thea (20)
    • Shania (18)
    • Katrina/Kate (18)
    • Amber (18)
    • Kailey/Kayleigh (18)
    • Faith (17)
    • Laura (17)

You’ll notice that Malta still lumps variants together. (They even lump non-variants like Elena and Ella together.) I’m not a big fan of this method because when groupings change from year to year, comparisons become impossible.

Malta also seems to have some issues with spelling. Aidan and Kieran became Aiden and Keiran between 2006 and 2009, for instance. And I’m sure “Gulia” was meant to be Giulia. (Though I do like the fact that there’s a “Julia/Gulia” grouping. Very Wedding Singer-esque.)

But it’s interesting stuff nonetheless. I’m especially intrigued by all the -ayden names on the boys’ list. (Worldwide phenomenon, anyone?)

If you want to see more from Malta, the top baby names of 2008, 2007, 2004/2005, 2003 and 2002 are available for download.

Source: National Statistics Office – Malta

Most Popular Baby Names in Malta in 2007

Malta seems to be having some trouble tallying baby names. According to the island’s National Statistics Office, these were the top boy names for 2007:

1. Luke/Luca
2. Matthew/Matteo/Matthias
3. Jake
4. Julian
5. John/Gianni/Jean/Juan/Sean
6. Nicholas/Nikolai & Aiden
7. Kieran
8. Isaac
9. Andrew/André/Andrea & Zack
10. Nathan/Nathaniel
11. Jeremy/Jerome & James/Jamie & Jayden
12. Daniel & Gabriel & Miguel
13. Liam
14. Alexander/Alessandro/Alejandro & Neil
15. Michael/Mikiel/Mikail/Michele & Carl/Carlo/Karl & Kyle
16. Benjamin & Thomas/Tommaso
17. Christian/Kristian
18. Mark/Marc/Marco
19. Dejan & Denzel
20. Kayden
98 babies
88
56
40
38
37 (tie)
35
34
33 (tie)
32
31 (tie)
29 (tie)
28
26 (tie)
24 (tie)
20 (tie)
18
17
16 (tie)
13

There’s nothing wrong with the list itself. But problems begin when you try to compare this list with the 2006 list.

For instance, in 2006, 49 boys were named Michael or Michele. A year later, there’s no way to tell if either of these names has became more or less popular — all we know is that 24 boys were named Michael, Michele Mikiel or Mikail, and that 29 boys were named Miguel specifically.

And that’s just the beginning. Between 2006 and 2007, Nicholas became Nicholas/Nikolai, Thomas became Thomas/Tommaso, and James became James/Jamie. Alexander became Alexander/Alessandro/Alejandro, while (accent-less) Andre became Andrew/André/Andrea. All of these odd groupings make it impossible to draw conclusions about how the popularity level of a specific name has changed over time.

I am also suspicious about spelling. Aidan (#6) and Jaydon (#19) from the 2006 list seemed to morph into Aiden (#6) and Jayden (#11) in 2007.

Finally — and this may be nit-picky — I dislike how Jeremy and Jerome were lumped together. The names may look alike, but they are unrelated.

I have issues with the girl names as well:

1. Maria/Mariah
2. Martina
3. Julia/Giulia
4. Christina/Kristina/Christine/Christa
5. Elisa/Eliza/Elizabeth
6. Sarah
7. Emma & Maya
8. Nicole/Nicola/Nicolette
9. Amy & Jasmine/Yasmine
10. Michela/Michelle
11. Katrina/Katie & Shania
12. Aaliyah & Hayley & Jade
13. Alexandra/Alessandra/Alessia
14. Francesca/Ylenia
15. Kylie
16. Kaya
17. Emily & Kayleigh
18. Kelsey & Leah & Rihanna & Thea
19. Ella & Elena & Kiera & Kyra
20. Hannah
73 babies
47
42
41
39
36
34 (tie)
31
30 (tie)
29
27 (tie)
21
21
19 (tie)
18
17
16 (tie)
15 (tie)
14 (tie)
13

Between 2006 and 2007, Julia became Julia/Giula, Nicole became Nicole/Nicola/Nicolette, Jasmin (sans e) became Jasmine/Yasmine, and Elisa/Eliza became Elisa/Eliza/Elisabeth. Michela went from being grouped with Michaela to being grouped with Michelle.

And, as with the boys, I don’t think spelling stayed consistent. Hailey (#10, 2006) became Hayley (#12, 2007) and Kaylie (#17, 2006) became Kayleigh (#17, 2007).

Malta, you’re driving me crazy! I hope the top names of 2008 are listed more logically (i.e., using name-groupings that have been used before). I’m keeping my eye on you… :)