The baby name Toccara debuted very impressively in the U.S. baby name data in 1981. The name became so trendy in the early ’80s, in fact, that it managed to rank among the 1,000 most popular girl names in the nation for three years in a row.
- 1984: 66 girls named Toccara
- 1983: 158 girls named Toccara [rank: 942nd]
- 1982: 358 girls named Toccara [rank: 541st]
- 1981: 182 girls named Toccara [rank: 857th] [debut]
- 1980: unlisted
- 1979: unlisted
A number of spelling variants also got a boost around the same time…
(Tocarro was a one-hit wonder.)
Where did the name Toccara come from?
It can be traced back to an Avon perfume Toccara (pronounced toh-KAH-rah), which came out in 1981.
Toccara was marketed as “the world’s first renewable fragrance.” Here are the instructions, as per the Tocarra television commercial:
Spray it on, the mystery begins. Stroke the same place, even hours later, and release Toccara’s mystery all over again.
In accordance with the idea of renewing the perfume via touch, the Toccara’s name meant “to touch,” Avon said. The company didn’t specify what language it was drawing from, but I’d assume Italian, because the verb for “touch” in Italian is toccare (pronounced toh-KAH-ray) — very similar to Toccara.
After a few years, the fragrance was discontinued and usage of the name Toccara dropped off.
If you look closely at the popularity graph for Toccara, though, you’ll see a minor resurgence in usage a few decades later. What caused the 2005 mini-spike? A television show. Plus-size model Toccara Jones, born in 1981, was a contestant on America’s Next Top Model during the second half of 2004.
What are your thoughts on the name Toccara?
[Latest update: 4/2022]
Source: “Avon product new.” Taos News 15. Oct. 1981: 30.