It's About That Time: The SSA Has Released The Top Baby Names For 2018

by Rita Templeton
Originally Published: 
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Every spring since 1997 (much to the delight of name nerds and expectant parents everywhere), the Social Security Administration releases its official data on the most popular American baby names of the past year.

This year is no different, and the verdict is in … Emma and Liam still reign supreme.

For five years in a row now, Emma has held the top spot. And on the boys’ list last year, Noah was unseated by Liam as the top name.

Here are the top 20 most popular names of 2018, according to the newly-released list from the Social Security Administration.


1. Liam

2. Noah

3. William

4. James

5. Oliver

6. Benjamin

7. Elijah

8. Lucas

9. Mason

10. Logan


1. Emma

2. Olivia

3. Ava

4. Isabella

5. Sophia

6. Charlotte

7. Mia

8. Amelia

9. Harper

10. Evelyn

So how do they compare to last year’s stats? Let’s check it out.

On the boys’ list, the top four names stayed in their spots, but Jacob dropped out of the top ten. Mason also dropped, from #7 to #9. Elijah bumped up a slot, going from #8 to #7. Oliver, previously #9, jumped to the #5 slot — while the previous #5, Logan, slid to #10.

For the girls, the top five names (and Amelia, #8) remained the same. But Abigail is out, and Harper is in, landing at #9. Charlotte and Mia swapped places; last year Charlotte was #7 and Mia was #6, but on the latest chart, those figures are reversed. Meanwhile, Evelyn dropped one, to land in the #10 spot.

And there’s movement in the other parts of the chart, as well. It’s unsurprising that Meghan (as in, Duchess of Sussex and new mom Meghan Markle, naturally) was the fastest-moving girl’s name, bumped from #1,404 in 2017 to a firm spot in the top 1000 at #703 on 2018’s list. The runners up are Dior and Adalee, rising 566 and 370 spots, respectively.

For boys, the fast-burner was a little more surprising: Genesis skyrocketed a whopping 608 places, going from #1,592 to #984. He was followed by Saint (rising 438 spots) and Baker (up 431 spots).

Meanwhile, Aaden fell the hardest, going from #888 to #1,120. Runners-up (or should we say down?) were Dilan (down 211 spots) and Craig (down 203).

Finally, on the girls’ side, Audrina took the biggest dive, falling 322 spots from #856 to #1,178. Her runners-up were Courtney (minus 242 spots) and Angelique (down 227).

Keep in mind that the SSA treats each name as a single entity — meaning that, for example, they count names like Sophia and Sofia, Emily and Emilee, Jayce and Jase separately. So combined, these names could actually be more popular “in real life” than their spots on the list imply.

Whether you’re using the SSA’s data as a measure of what to name your baby or what names to steer clear of, it’s nice to have a gauge of what other parents are going to be yelling across the playground.

For baby names from popular to practically unheard-of, browse thousands of choices at the Scary Mommy baby name database.

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