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ONS data reveals the baby names going out of fashion





Whether parents are searching for an old-fashioned classic or a more modern moniker – picking a name for a new baby carries a weight of responsibility.

And the chances of that name standing the test of time is also often something expectant mums and dads may like to consider.

Parents have a lot to consider when picking a name for their baby. Image: iStock.
Parents have a lot to consider when picking a name for their baby. Image: iStock.

Using data from the Office for National Statistics, researchers have been taking a look at some of the names which have becoming increasingly less popular over the course of the last decade.

Divided into lists of boys’ and girls’ names, Compare the Market has identified the numbers of times a name has been used, and how this has altered, between 2011 and 2021.

Compare the Market has used ONS data to find out how often names have been chosen. Image: iStock.
Compare the Market has used ONS data to find out how often names have been chosen. Image: iStock.

Falling out of fashion

Among the boys, the name Brandon is thought to have seen the biggest decrease in popularity - with an 87% reduction in its use.

Originating from the Old Welsh word ‘breenhin’, which translates to ‘prince’, or the slightly more niche ‘broom covered hill’, the name enjoyed a resurgence in the 90s, suggest the statistics, but it is now falling out of fashion again.

Ashton, meaning ‘ash tree town’, comes in second having decreased by 83% among those looking for a name for a little boy.

While third is Mackenzie with a decline of 81%.

However in a slight twist – despite the name falling out of favour with families expecting boys, the name has sparked interest among families with a new baby girl where Mackenzie has had a notable 14% increase over the last 10 years.

Among the names for girls decreasing in popularity is Amy, which has seen one of the biggest decreases since 2011.

This is followed by Brooke, with a drop of 83%, and then Fiona in third with a decrease in popularity of 76%.

The baby names steadily falling out of fashion since 2011
The baby names steadily falling out of fashion since 2011

Names becoming more popular

As fashions and trends change, so do people’s preferences for baby names and analysts have picked out the names showing signs of increasing in popularity.

Saint is ‘by far’, says Compare the Market, the number one trending name for a boy. It has experienced a huge 1,867% increase over the last decade, no doubt thanks to Kim Kardashian catapulting the name into the limelight when she used it for her own child.

As names fall out of favour, others grow in popularity. Image: iStock.
As names fall out of favour, others grow in popularity. Image: iStock.

While David and Victoria Beckham may be to blame for the name Harper growing in popularity among girls.

The couple named their daughter Harper Seven back in 2011 prompting a 3,424% rise in the numbers picking the name since then.

Bowie (1,850%) and Ezra (1,326%) round off the current top three most trending baby boy names while Aubrey and Ariah are showing gains for the girls.



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