Every year when the Social Security administration releases its list of most popular baby names, some parents and parents-to-be are bound to get upset, especially if their baby name is too popular. Who wants to be one of five Sophias in their first-grade class? It's crazy to think that just a few years ago, the most popular baby names were Jessica, Jennifer, and the like. These days, according to the recently-released 2011 report, it's all about the feminine Latin-ized names — Isabella (#2), Mia (#9), Amelia (#30) — and more exotic ones like Layla (#33) and Savannah (#41). So, are we back to playing traditional gender roles with our baby girl names, tired of the more masculine names of the 80s and 90s? Clearly not when it comes to names like Madison (#8) and Taylor (#44), but all those romantic-sounding "a" names certainly suggest a return to femininity. Too Much 'Twilight': Our Take On The Hottest Baby Names Of 2011
Unexpected celebrity influences also play a role, with Aaliyah (#46) clearly paying tribute to the R&B singer killed in a plane crash in 2001, and Khloe (#49) after Khloe Kardashian. If you know anybody with a baby girl named Khloe, please help me understand the reasoning behind this name. Nothing against Khloe Kardashian, but she's not even famous famous for anything. I don't get it. Why not just go with Chloe (#10), which is a beautiful name on its own and much easier to spell?
Boys' names seem to fluctuate a lot less in inventiveness and popularity, with traditional names like Jacob, William and Michael still holding strong. Some celeb-oriented names have creeped into there, however, like "Jayden" — clearly influenced by Britney Spears. I'm starting to get a little worried that soon enough, people will start naming their kids after the characters in 50 Shades of Grey — Christian was #30 among boys' names last year. Please, just don't. I can never look at the name Anastasia the same way again...
See the entire list of 2011's most popular baby names on The Stir: 100 Most Popular Baby Names Of 2011
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