"Popular but not trendy"- my experiment - the surprises

OK, so I was debating my favourite 2 names: [name]Chloe[/name] and [name]Phoebe[/name]. I keep worrying [name]Chloe[/name] is too popular and will dive like [name]Jessica[/name] did. So I took a 15yr time frame from here in Australia (NSW). To work out just how popular [name]Chloe[/name] is.
I looked at the data: the most popular for that time period were: (# rank explained later)

Sure enough, [name]Chloe[/name] was 3rd for that 15 year period with over 7681 little girls in that time period called [name]Chloe[/name]. [name]Phoebe[/name]? 72nd with only 1460. [name]Just[/name] because there are alot of girls named [name]Chloe[/name] doesn’t mean it has remained consistently popular over the 15 years though.

OK, so I wondered, what names were always there but less trendy? As in they didn’t have huge peaks then drop offs like some names did? they just stayed popular.

Using the data I looked for names that just kept appearing and didn’t drop or rise too much (for all you nerds, I used standard deviation). To be consistently popular a name had to appear every year. Noteworthy: the # next to the Top 5 names indicates where they ranked in this list. The most popular names all made this list- but because they had more defined peaks and troughs they ranked much lower overall.

Top 10 Popular but not Trendy names for the last 15yrs were:

So I guess in NSW, Australia anyway these are the modern classics of the last 15 yrs.

Interesting surprises:


So, having done all this, perhaps you ask: Have I switched to [name]Phoebe[/name] over [name]Chloe[/name]? Probably, and I might even consider some of the other Top Popular but not trendy names to see what I like.


PS: If you want to know where/if a name ranked in the “Popular but not Trendy” list ask me- I still have the data.

Fascinating research! :slight_smile: [name]Chloe[/name] and [name]Phoebe[/name] are very pretty names. [name]Do[/name] you like names of Greek origin, then? [name]How[/name] about [name]Penelope[/name], [name]Zoe[/name] or [name]Melaina[/name]?

[name]Glad[/name] to hear that at least in Australia, my name ([name]Amber[/name]) is not trendy. :slight_smile: I’ve always worried about my name being all dated and '80s (I was born in the late '90s) but really my mum named me [name]Amber[/name] after the fossil, not because it was perceived as cool or anything.

I prefer [name]Phoebe[/name] to [name]Chloe[/name], maybe because [name]Chloe[/name] is very common where I live. And I would agree that [name]Phoebe[/name]'s more timeless. All Chloes I know are in my age group or younger, so it must be somewhat trendy in my country.

[name]Mikayla[/name] would probably smack of trendiness to some people; depends on your definition of trendy, as some people define it as a newly-created name or a new spelling of a name. I reckon [name]Mikayla[/name] is to [name]Michaela[/name] what [name]Debra[/name] is to [name]Deborah[/name] - a spelling common enough that it’s accepted - except it looks like you’ve proved [name]Mikayla[/name] a modern classic, which is pretty cool. :). If you combined the popularities of [name]Mikayla[/name], [name]Makayla[/name], [name]Mckayla[/name], [name]Michaela[/name] and other variants in favour, do you think would that even out its popularity any more?

Very interesting that [name]Paris[/name] was consistent in popularity. Most people would think “city name, popularity of the name [name]London[/name]/[name]Londyn[/name], [name]Paris[/name] [name]Hilton[/name]” and get out their official TRENDY stamp. :slight_smile:

Wow that’s so cool! You put so much thought in to that :slight_smile:

I like the theory a lot. A names popularity doesn’t seem too bad if it’s in the top 100 but not rising quickly. [name]One[/name] that’s always been in the top 100 but hasn’t had a huge huge peak, is certainly more of a classic feeling name to me.

I love [name]Phoebe[/name] so much! I actually love it a lot more than [name]Chloe[/name]. I live in the UK but I think it’s similar here. [name]Chloe[/name] peaked so much over a certain period of time that it feels tired now, whereas [name]Phoebe[/name] has been very popular but still feels fresh.

I also like [name]Molly[/name], [name]Eliza[/name] and [name]Anna[/name].

I plan to move to Australia eventually, by the time I’m having children, and possibly to NSW therefore the popularity of names there is really interesting to me. I think most of the names on my list are unusual, but I’d be interested if any have appeared in the top 100?

[name]Claudie[/name], [name]Penelope[/name], [name]Adeline[/name], [name]Angelica[/name], [name]Anneliese[/name], [name]Aria[/name], [name]Cecily[/name], [name]Celeste[/name], [name]Jessamine[/name], [name]Maeve[/name], [name]Milena[/name], [name]Mira[/name], [name]Rosaline[/name], [name]Rosanna[/name], [name]Tessa[/name], [name]Thea[/name], [name]Tabitha[/name]. And I used to have [name]Ivy[/name] on the list but I removed it since it seemed to be very popular in Australia (top 100 even though it’s still in the mid 200’s in the UK) so I’d be super interested in the statistics on [name]Ivy[/name]!

Thank you :slight_smile:

I much prefer [name]Phoebe[/name] to [name]Chloe[/name], the latter I find fairly dated. I remember being 16 years old and it seemed like every other 16 year old girl around me wanted to name their daughter one of [name]Chloe[/name] or [name]Ellie[/name] and therefore I don’t have a particularly positive feeling to the name!

Ljandrl You mention [name]Ivy[/name] being in the mid 200’s in the UK, do you know where I can access this data as I’d like to see beyond the top 100?!

Yeah, maybe I am crazy, or perhaps overthinking it? I want a popular/ known name, but I really don’t want tomorrow’s “Taylor”, if you know what I mean?

I think in my mind I had already accepted that Chloe (although pretty) was a just too common. Phoebe is so similar in sound and not as trendy. I am planning on reviewing the other names that meet that category to see if any appeal- Chelsea is one that I liked the sounds of- but what on earth would a nn be? LOL

Claudie- ‘Claudia’ appears as a Popular but not trendy name- BONUS! is #12
Penelope- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Adeline- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period (I LOVE that name BTW!)
Angelica- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Anneliese- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period (love that name too)
Aria- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period (cute name!)
Cecily- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Celeste- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Jessamine- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period, the variation Jasmine hits the Popular but Not trendy list at #15
Maeve- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period (but I suspect it will appear in the latest results)
Milena- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Mira- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period
Rosaline- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period. Rose was the #133 most popular by # in that time frame.
Rosanna- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period. Rose was the #133 most popular by # in that time frame.
Tessa- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period.
Thea- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period.
Tabitha- did not appear in the Top 100 list in that 15yr period.

Now, Ivy.
Based on the fact that it only appears in the Top 100 from 2009 (115 girls), then again in 2010 (188 girls) (2011 results are pending) I would say it is obviously increasing in popularity and more likely to be a trend based name. But who knows? Maybe it will even out and remain there for 15 yrs? LOL

I am sure you will love Australia! NSW has alot of different regions- some hot and beachy, other’s cold. It is a great place to live- I have travelled through Europe and realise just how lucky we are in Australia as we have so much space.


I am going to go through and combine names that have different spellings but same sound- like you said all the “[name]Mikayla[/name]'s”, but keep names like [name]Isabelle[/name] and [name]Isabella[/name] apart. I don’t mind the name [name]Michaela[/name]- but it doesn’t match my last name at all.

Interestingly, Amber is not at all trendy , but is still popular! in 2003 there were 89 girls, 2010 there were 89 girls! Various higher and lower numbers in between.

Apparently (according to my Bratz doll loving DD) if we end up with a [name]Phoebe[/name] we have to nn her “[name]Sugar[/name]”. LOL

@Sheflieswithherownwings - Go here, http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/publications/re-reference-tables.html?edition=tcm%3A77-243746 and downloads the excel sheets, one for boys 2010, one for girls. Older versions are also available here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/search/index.html?pageSize=50&newquery=names+2010

There are several pages in each excel sheet so scroll along the bottom to the final one, and that’s the one that lists all names used rather than just the top 100. [name]Ivy[/name] for example is 227. It really is a briliant resource! :slight_smile:

@emiliaj - thank so much! Yes it does look like [name]Ivy[/name]'s experiencing a sudden surge - any idea what sparked this? I think it’s gradually going the same way over here but taking longer. So happy to see my other names aren’t popular right now! What about [name]Maeve[/name] makes you think it will become popular soon? Thanks for the warning! Lol.

I really can’t wait to visit Australia! We hope to come over for a year first on the working hol visa and figure out which part we want to settle in. It’s such a huge place with so many different lifestyles to offer! We’ve considered Queensland for the real hot, beachy weather, but my partner doesn’t like it too hot which is why we thought maybe NSW would be better. I guess we’ll have to wait and see where we love when we get there. I know in my heart, once we get back from the year travelling we’re going to be ready to move over there permanently and have children :slight_smile:

[name]Phoebe[/name] is great, and nn [name]Sugar[/name] us sweet! Hehe. Good luck and thanks again for all the info :slight_smile:


[name]Ivy[/name]- why is it popular? hmmm… I am going to stick my neck out here and suggest the show “Gossip Girl”. The show started in 2007, and has a character [name]Ivy[/name]. It is a fairly popular series (NMS!) but people here the name and it becomes acceptable. From that I gather the show is the new [name]Beverly[/name] Hills 90210. So prestige is linked to the name. The name [name]Ivy[/name] seems to have gained momentum over the last few years. When I named my other 2 girls there is NO [name]WAY[/name] I would have even considered it as usable. It was like using [name]Shirley[/name] or [name]Ethel[/name].

[name]Maeve[/name]- love it. Loved it since the [name]Author[/name] [name]Maeve[/name] Binchy. I think it’s appeal is two fold- 1) it is Irish and 2) it is single syllable. Makes a great mn with an Irish flair. I feel it is likely be the next [name]Shannon[/name] or [name]Tara[/name]- in other words a great name that gets over used and forgotten.

Of your names, the ones I see staying less popular are: [name]Mira[/name], [name]Rosanna[/name] and [name]Thea[/name].
Of your names, the ones I think may catch on as ‘new popular’ names: [name]Aria[/name], [name]Penelope[/name] (due to Big Bang [name]Theory[/name]), Roseline (similar to [name]Rosalie[/name] from Twilight), [name]Cecily[/name] (seems to crop up a bit), [name]Anneliese[/name] seems a popular mn.
Of your names, the ones I think will increase but not be too popular: [name]Tabitha[/name], [name]Milena[/name] (has the ‘l’ sound), any [name]Angel[/name] name, [name]Jessamine[/name] (people like names that link to flowers).

Anyway that’s MHO.

When you come to [name]Oz[/name], try mid NSW coast region for best climate. Weather is hot but not stupid hot, and no frosts. [name]Blue[/name] mountains is a must see (but it snows there sometimes!) and The [name]Hunter[/name] [name]Valley[/name] is a great wine region. South coast NSW- [name]Sapphire[/name] Coast is just spectacular for beaches. [name]Sydney[/name]… you either love or hate it. LOL


Wow thanks for all the info! [name]Just[/name] from reading I had thought that mid NSW coast might be my best bet climate wise but the areas seemed a little expensive for us property wise! If I remember rightly, though it’s been a while since I researched it all. Probably as a result of the “perfect” climate! We will more than likely let job opportunities make the final decisions anyway!

The insight in to all those names is fab, thank you so much! I actually love Gossip Girl (don’t hate me! it’s a guilty pleasure lol) but [name]Ivy[/name] isn’t a main character so I’d never considered it an influence. That may be the key though. Main character names like [name]Blair[/name] may become to strongly tied to the characters to be used. [name]Ivy[/name] just gets a subtle boost. And speaking of 90210, there is also an [name]Ivy[/name] on that show. Good insight!

I hope [name]Maeve[/name] doesn’t become trendy! I guess we’ll have to wait and see what happens. I can definitely see [name]Aria[/name] and [name]Penelope[/name] becoming popular as I think they’re rising fast her in the UK too, but I still hope not!

Thanks again for all the info, it’s so great to have “insider” knowledge! :slight_smile:

Great research! My favorite name when I was I was younger, was [name]Chelsea[/name]:). But I agree, what nn?!

Would you mind giving me your opinion on popularity of my list?


[name]Fiona[/name]- I adore [name]Fiona[/name], I think it is a great name with great nn Fi, [name]Fifi[/name]. It didn’t make top 100 at all. But IMHO is very usable.
[name]Daphne[/name]- It didn’t make top 100 at all. It picks up the current flower name trend, but I don’t think it will ever be top 100.
[name]Stella[/name]- #108 most popular by #, didn’t appear until 2006 at all. In 2006-2010 74, 69, 93, 108, 96 girls. 2010- 598 [name]Chloe[/name]'s! So good current name, newly on trend. Has been on trend in the past century so not a “NEW” name- very usable, not the next [name]Jessica[/name].
[name]Estelle[/name]/a- It didn’t make top 100 at all. It is however a known name, with “l” such a current favourite sound it matches current trends without being trendy.
[name]Iris[/name]- It didn’t make top 100 at all. It picks up the current flower name trend, but I don’t think it will ever be top 100.
[name]Matilda[/name]- ranks 162 in # popularity, it only appeared in 2003, peaked in 2008 (339 given the name) and is now dropping off but still high as 287 in 2010 were given the name [name]Matilda[/name]. Of course this is in Australia- the home of Waltzing [name]Matilda[/name]! :slight_smile: For this reason I would guess it is a trendy name rather than an consistently popular name.
[name]Olive[/name]- It didn’t make top 100 at all. It picks up the current flower name trend as a spin off nature name, but I don’t think it will ever be top 100. I suspect much of it’s appeal is it’s similarity to the very popular [name]Olivia[/name].

[name]Chelsea[/name]- Chels, Chelly, [name]Elsi[/name], [name]Elsa[/name], [name]Chelsa[/name]? That is all I came up with after mulling the name over. I am tempted by the [name]Chelsey[/name] spelling to reduce incorrect prn of “Chel- See” ah".

As far as flower names go [name]Jasmine[/name] was a surprisingly stable popular choice- ie less Trendy.


Gutted [name]Ivy[/name] is becoming so popular, there were only 7 in [name]Scotland[/name] the year i named her, hopefully it doesn’t climb too much higher cause of damn [name]Beyonce[/name], oh well it’s suits her and i still love it.

Can you check for [name]Wren[/name], [name]Violet[/name], [name]Rosemary[/name], [name]Sage[/name] and [name]Calla[/name] please. I know [name]Violet[/name] is already quite popular almost top 100 in [name]England[/name]. I really like old lady names.

I think [name]Ivy[/name]'s rise in popularity is teh same as the other ‘old lady’ names, [name]Scarlett[/name], [name]Ruby[/name], [name]Pearl[/name], [name]Violet[/name] would all have been very rare on anyone under 70 not so long ago. Now [name]Scarlett[/name] is top 10 in [name]England[/name] and top 100 in [name]Scotland[/name].

I suspect [name]Ivy[/name] won’t make top 50, but it is annoying when a celeb chooses a name as it will either increase or decrease the use (depending on the celeb!).

[name]Wren[/name]- did not make the top 100 at all. Before nameberry I had never even HEARD of [name]Wren[/name] (and I have looked at names for decades), so I suspect it will remain quieter.
[name]Violet[/name]- Rated #83, didn’t make the Top 100 until 2009 (89) and 2010 (79). [name]Love[/name] it. I suspect it will never be Top 50 but will stay around at least 5 more years. I have been considering [name]Violet[/name] as a possible mn for [name]Phoebe[/name].
[name]Rosemary[/name]- did not make the top 100 at all. I know a [name]Rosemary[/name] and she is an endearing girl.
[name]Sage[/name]- did not make the top 100 at all. I think it is a strong name with two great meanings. [name]Don[/name]'t think it will trend upwards in a hurry. [name]Sage[/name] would be awesome with [name]Ivy[/name]!!!
[name]Calla[/name]- did not make the top 100 at all. I like [name]Callista[/name] too.


2011 released!!! Australia NSW

NEW additons (never previously on in the last 15yrs) to the Top 100 are:
[name]Harper[/name] (117 little [name]Harper[/name] girls)

Names that are rising quickly:
[name]Ava[/name] (2010- 425, 2011 488)

Rising- but more slowly:

Rising slightly slower again but have definately not peaked yet:
[name]Zoe[/name]- this name is gradually and slowly increasing, maybe as it is similar to [name]Chloe[/name] but not so popular?

Peaked and slowly dropping off:
[name]Isabel[/name] (spelling)

Name that dropped noticably:
[name]Lily[/name] -2010 501 babies, 2011 410 babies)

Names that dropped off the Top 100 after 15 years

The name Chelsea now sits at the exact same rank #37 as it did 14 years ago.
As does Claire- sitting at #63 the exact same rank! I guess that is why they make the ‘popular but not trendy list’.

The name that REAPPEARED after 3 years off:
[name]Erin[/name] (which is ironic, as it is the name I swore I would use if I ever have another girl, but as it had dropped off completely I figured it was too dated to use… apparently NOT!)

Anyway, thought it was interesting to see how names evolve, and what new data for 2011 meant.

My name is [name]Chloe[/name] and I love it, I don’t know anyone else with that name. And in my year in college I only know of 1 other person with the name and that is out of a lot of people. I never had a problem with name confusion, I think usually only the top ten actually have a true problem with that, mostly top five. My school has tons of Katelyns and Ashleys, only one [name]Chloe[/name].

Let me clarify that I meant I don’t know anyone else with that name that is my age! I have met 3 little Chloes, but I work with kids a lot so thats out of a lot of kids.

As for my beloved “[name]Chloe[/name]”… it has TRAGICALLY now hit the #1 spot. :frowning:
I am trying very hard to let it go.
Maybe my original, [name]Erin[/name] is back on the cards now it is back in the top 100! ???