Congratulations! You’re expecting a baby boy or girl this year! Whether you decide to find out baby’s gender, or opt to be “surprised,” chances are you’ve now got baby names on the brain.
Whether it’s a boy or a girl, you want your child’s moniker to be sleek, unique and very special.
And you're going to see a whole bunch of "best baby names" lists out there. (Heck! We even have a whole section of the site devoted to it!) Lists of all the best and most best names from pop culture to traditional biblical names are out there, just waiting to be perused.
Buuut (and isn’t there always a ‘but?’) there probably are a FEW slightly questionable names you may want to think twice about giving your newborn in today’s world.
Hillary, Clinton, Donald or Trump
Official White House Photo by Sheleah Craighead
Ooof. The 2016 presidential election may be over, but politics remains a hot-button topic that will always rile people up—and even divide some families. Whether you were pro-Clinton or pro-Trump, you may want to avoid giving your child a name that will automatically trigger an extremely strong reaction from friends, family and even strangers.
Basically, if you want to be invited back to Uncle John’s Thanksgiving table next year, avoid any names associated with U.S. presidential candidates. (Although, if you do go for ‘Clinton,’ as a first name, you get the added bonus of saying it’s also in honor of musician George Clinton.)
Back in 2012, the internet when nuts when a family supposedly named their daughter Hashtag. Since then, there have been reports of babies named Facebook, Vista and Google.
There have always been parents that strive for unique names, and unique names are great. But maybe stay away from the names of highly visible brands whose only reason for existing is to make money. (Come on. You know it's true.)
(Or Targaryen. Or Tyrion. Or Sansa. Or JonSnow—yes, spelled like that.) We get it. You love Game of Thrones. Who doesn’t? It’s one of the most popular television shows (and books) for a reason—it’s just THAT good. But the names on this show are just so niche and so other-worldly, that ultimately they may not be the right name choice for a modern-day child.
Not to mention, they can be pretty hard to pronounce and spell—with the exception of Jon, of course. Besides, in ten years no one will know what you’re talking about when you explain your kid was named after a TV character. By then, some new fantasy drama TV series will be just as popular and GoT will be a thing of the…well…past.
A popular mommy blogger recently asked readers on Instagram: If you were to name your babies after your pregnancy cravings, what would their names be? Hmmm, let me think. My daughters would then be named New York Super Fudge Chunk and Pizza.
Delicious to eat, but not delicious names for kids. Whether you craved broccoli in your pregnancy (Ugh, I hate you…) or Chunky Monkey ice cream, please don’t name your kids after the foods you desired during your second and third trimesters. Isn’t one kid out there named Apple enough? (And if you DID crave apples…tell me your secret!)
My grandfather even knows Kim and Kanye named their son this—that’s how popular Saint is. But only they can pull off this name for a baby boy. Really. It just wouldn’t have the same panache. I mean, it’s bad enough your secret guilty pleasure is watching KUWTK—but does the world need to know your vice? Or your kid?
Uber or Lyft
I live in a major city, so while pregnant with both kids, I took uber and Lyft so often to my OB-GYN appointments (I could not bear the subway after 30 weeks!) that I joked I was naming my first kid Uber Lyft. Listen, it was a total joke, although I did scare my husband when I announced this.
While car service apps are total lifesavers when you’re super preggo and living in an urban metropolis, they’re just not things you name your babies. Unless you actually gave birth inside an uber or Lyft. In which case, I’m sure both companies would be quite flattered you named your child after your fave car service.
But otherwise, no.
Although, Via is pretty cute for a baby girl…hmmm.
(That’s “Katie” not “Cad-dy”) Mean Girls was an extremely popular cult-classic movie that launched words like, “Fetch” into the urban dictionary and showed the world Lindsay Lohan really did possess charm and charisma, as well as acting chops.
The classic 2003 movie will make its Broadway debut this Spring—spearheaded by comedian/actress Tina Fey, of course. So, expect the name Cady (“Katie!”) to float around again. Cady Heron (Lohan) makes it a point throughout the movie to explain that her name is NOT pronounced ‘Caddy’.
So, if you want to go with a good-old-fashioned feminine name, opt for Katie or maybe even Katy, a la singer Katy Perry. Name your kid Cady, and like the movie character, your daughter will have to forever explain to the 12 people who never bothered to see Mean Girls (Gasp!) that her name is NOT “Cad-dy!” Complete with teen eyeroll, of course.
I actually have a friend named Four and recall there was a character named Six in the 90s sitcom, Blossom. I get that naming your kid a number can be cool—even significant. But just because Stranger Things is the the best thing on Netflix, it doesn’t mean you need to name your baby after the shy, mysterious teenage girl with psychokinetic powers.
You can still be groovy at Comic-Con without having a child named Eleven!
Instead, why don’t you consider the name Jane, which is Eleven’s REAL name in the series, and always a classic? Or better yet, the super cool and retro Milly, after Milly Bobby Brown, the young starlet who actually portrays Eleven?
Pop-singer Pink (Alecia Moore to her family, I’m sure!) named her son Jameson, and Pink is insanely awesome and talented. You are just not as cool as Pink. Neither am I. Neither is anyone. Because, like Beyonce, she’s in a talent class by herself. So, just accept the fact you’re not fabulous enough to name your son Jameson like she did.
For Pink, it just makes sense. “Hello, I’m quite famous and have award-winning pipes. Meet my super hip son, Jameson.” See? Can you pull off saying that? No? Exactly. Not to mention, the whiskey association…
If you name your child Hamilton, you’ll just be reminding people who never saw Hamilton—Lin Manuel Miranda’s theatrical masterpiece—on Broadway that they cannot afford tickets. Ever. Even if you indeed name your baby after the U.S. President Alexander Hamilton, and not the show, the Tony-award winning musical was so popular for the past three years that lucky ticket-scorers considered $699 tickets for rear mezzanine a steal. It’s best to exit this theatrical name from your list—Stage Left.
Superhero Diana Price, aka Wonder Woman is pretty kick-ass, and so are Lynda Carter and Gal Gadot, just two of the many smart and gawgeous actresses who portrayed WW outside the DC Comic book world. While your daughter should indeed bear a nice, strong, solid name, Wonder Woman may not be it.
First of all, she’ll walk around with her first name as, “Wonder,” and that’s going to lead to teasing. (“What is Wonder wondering?” “Is Wonder wandering?” “No Wonder you are the way you are!”…you get the idea) And secondly, do you really want your little baby’s middle name to be ‘Woman’?
Not when she’s, well, a child. Now she’s just really confused and so is everyone else. Enjoy the Wonder Woman movies from afar, and let them inspire your young lady. Just don’t actually NAME HER Wonder Woman.
If you're looking for some really great names for your kid, check out our predictions for the most popular baby names for 2018.