The Next-Gen Baby Names You'll Want to Steal
When it comes to baby names, our obsession with French names (and European monikers in general) will never wane—we know you love them too!—but what about the next generation? What will members of Gen Z call their adorable Generation Alpha newborns? Considering there are roughly 2.5 million of them born around the globe every week, it’s probably worth thinking about.
So what do we know about Gen A so far? Firstly, they don’t know a world without technology. In fact, it’s such an integrated part of their lives that we should probably expect the unusual trend of Instagram filters as baby names to stick around. Secondly, if Gen Z attitudes are anything to go by, traditional gender binaries will eventually become redundant, giving rise to more gender-neutral names. And thirdly, individuals will have more power over their lives, says futurist, demographer, and TEDx speaker Mark McCrindle, who told Business Insider that massive technological changes will make Gen Alpha “the most transformative generation ever.”
So in honor of these futuristic infants, we made some of our own name predictions—all in good fun, of course.
If you’re a bit of a hippy at heart and believe in our spiritual connection to the earth and cosmos, then you’ve probably heard the expression indigo children (also called crystal or star children). Nancy Ann Tappe coined the phrase in the late ’60s/early ’70s and has devoted her life to the science of color, believing it is “one language that can be used to distinguish and identify elements of the human personality.” By the time Gen Alphas are having kids, we think they’ll look back on this name as being retro and cool.
By Merriam-Webster’s definition, valor means “strength of mind or spirit that enables a person to encounter danger with firmness,” which is exactly what the children of the future will need. Not to mention it sounds really cool, which is always important, right? It’s like the Thor for a new generation.
When writing this piece, we asked ourselves, What will be the next big country or city baby name of the future? Brooklyn exploded in popularity—partly because it’s a seriously cool borough in New York, brimming with Brownstones and creative types, but also due to the fact that fashion designer Victoria Beckham and her soccer-star husband, David, blessed their firstborn with the moniker. Paris has also been widely popular for no other reason than it’s the City of Love, and we adore anything French. So our prediction of the future generation is Venice. Why? Well, it represents two opposing places, both the ancient Italian city and the eccentric Los Angeles beach, making it the perfect blend of history and hipster.
Since technology will be such a huge part of our future children’s lives, nature will become even more important, so we predict that most names with an earthy element will be popular. Wolves are power animals but also happen to rely on the power of the group to survive—two strong qualities. We added the “e” because it just looks better.
Nature aside, we think old school will become cool again. Since Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a musical genius (he played the piano from 3 years old and went on to produce over 600 works), there’s legacy attached, and we think new-gen kids will see it as a super-fly alternative with major spunk. And by the way, Tom Wolfe is legendary—if you don’t know who he is, then look him up stat.
Bambi is without a doubt one of the most iconic Disney cartoons ever, and as a baby name, it’s totally gender neutral, too. Why? Well, Bambi may be a male deer, but it’s also the name of one of our favorite female models, Bambi Northwood Blyth. And wouldn’t it just melt your heart to see your gorgeous wide-eyed babe look up when you call out that cute name? Bambi.
Raising a child is tough. Sleep and personal space are two things you need to let go of immediately, but that’s nothing compared to the responsibility of raising a child with the confidence, know-with-all, and moral compass to navigate a future we can’t possibly understand. Pilot is a strong title to psychologically equip your child for what’s to come. And can’t you imagine your little babe dressing up as him or herself in a little pilot’s hat? Adorable.
If today’s immediacy is anything to go by, the future looks instantaneous. So being “zippy” will surely be an everyday necessity. By Merriam-Webster’s definition, it means very fast, appealingly stylish, and spicy in flavor, all of which sound like great qualities for a child’s name!
In a world where gender neutrality is the norm and the future is unknown, gray seems like the appropriate fit. Of course, changing the spelling is key here—for cool factor, of course.
Choosing a title for your unborn child can be tricky, and the pressure is almost unbearable at times. Well, one thing we know for sure is you’ll “wynn” your kid over with this one. Baby Name Wizard calls this Welsh name a “fresh choice in America,” harking back to the good old days when titles like Winfield, Winfred, and Winston were popular. That sort of heritage is sure to be popular with the new-gen kids.
Again, the beauty of Mother Nature will not be lost on this digital-first generation, not to mention its necessity for survival. The name Coast will remind them of vacations spent paddling in the ocean as kids themselves, and that fascination with endless summer is sure to appeal.
If you’re a Game of Thrones fan, then you’ll be more than familiar with Jon Snow. While he might “know nothing,” there is a heroic quality and internal moral compass that make his name a quality moniker to pass down through the generations. Pop culture aside, snow resembles a fresh start, a clean slate, and a new beginning, and it’s absolutely beautiful, just like your newborn child.
When you are steering a course for the future, unsure of the direction, you need a captain’s attitude! The best part? This name has “never ranked among the top 1000 names in America,” according to Baby Name Wizard. That’s how we know it’ll be a hit.
When we asked around for some cool next-gen monikers, we had an influx of interesting namesakes, from social handles and hashtags to unusual picks people had come across when babysitting. This one is from the latter. Van is starting to gain popularity among Australian families; my sister told me about the new baby name trend in the coastal regions of Queensland. It has a nomadic quality harking back to our ancestors, which will certainly appeal to a tech-focused new generation.
Do you remember River Phoenix? He defined ’90s cinema, but more than that, he represented a generation of creative youths who wanted more than to act. In an excerpt from the book about his life, Last Night at the Viper Room, Rolling Stone contributor Gavin Edwards wrote, “Acting in movies was not just a fluke detour in his life, it was important to him, and he wanted to do it well.” He was his generation’s James Dean, and his tenacity, creative nous, and signature style won over fans then and now. This nostalgia (and the fact that it’s also a dazzling example of Mother Nature at its finest), makes it a name for all ages. Plural for uniqueness’s sake.
Social media has us more connected than ever—online at least—but it’s very different #IRL. In fact, many of us are feeling more out of touch than ever. This feeling 100% explains the #squadgoals explosion (thank you, T.Swift), with people wanting to feel connected and craving real-life social interaction. Kru defines this new “crew” sentiment, this inner need for personal allies who rally and develop close kinships with you. It’s also a name your child can feel proud of.
If there’s been a defining brand in the fashion world right now (and throughout history), it’s YSL, and Hedi Slimane was at the pinnacle of its modern uprising. The French-Tunisian photographer and fashion designer signaled change when he took the helm of the famed fashion house, being brave and defiant in the face of an industry that was reluctant to innovate. This is a fabulous name choice for anyone who wants to raise a creative, emotionally intelligent thinker.
The room can be filled with a crowd of cool people, yet there will always be that one personality who rises above the ambient noise and makes you pay attention. If you could look a little closer at that person’s energy, you’d see the colors that radiate. With this sentiment in mind, Harper’s Bazaar took a closer look at the creative energy behind some of fashion’s biggest names, and the photographs of their colourful auras were pure magic. We think the future generation will be inspired by this modern alchemy, and even if think auras are just a bit of old voodoo, you can’t deny that the name is super pretty!
It might be the second-most abundant mineral on the earth, but quartz is anything but common. It’s known as the “master healer,” according to Charms of Light, and can absorb, store, release, and regulate energy. For many of you, that might seem like some kind of witchcraft, but the future generation might be inspired by its mystic qualities. Even if you’re not convinced of its healing properties, you can’t get much cooler than quartz, can you?
If you’re not a fan of our new-gen predictions then shop our favorite baby name books below for some modern monikers you’ll love.
What’s your next-gen baby name prediction?