A Latin name reaches the top 10 most popular names in the United States for the first time

(CNN) — There’s a newcomer to the list of the most popular baby names in America.

Mateo made the list of the top 10 most popular boy names for the first time, becoming the sixth most popular boy name in 2023 and knocking Benjamin off the list, according to data recently released by the Social Security Administration.

“Mateo had a huge surge… The fact that Mateo went from No. 11 in 2022 to No. 6 in 2023 is crazy. We don’t see that very often at the top of the charts,” said Sophie Kihm, editor-in-chief of baby name website Nameberry.

The names at the top of the list tend not to change quickly, Kihm said. Liam and Olivia top the rankings for the fifth year in a row. And Mateo is the only new name to reach the highest rank.

The inclusion of this name in the boys’ top 10 list also marks a milestone, Kihm said. “It’s practically the first name identified as Latino, at least among children,” he said.

Last year, more than 11,000 American children were named Mateo, the highest number on record, according to the Social Security Administration. This name, which means “gift from God,” began appearing in the top 1,000 in 1995, according to Kihm. Two decades later, it had cracked the top 100. And in recent years, its popularity has intensified at an even faster rate, Kihm says.

Kihm, who also works as a consultant helping people choose and change their baby names, points out several trends that she suspects are contributing to Mateo’s rise.

The growing popularity of the name is likely related to the increase in the Latino population in the US, says Kihm, who notes that it is increasingly common for people of different origins to look to their heritage when naming their babies. .

But Mateo also has cross-cultural appeal, like all the names at the top of the Social Security Administration’s list.

“He seems friendlier and more approachable than Matthew. He has that nice ‘-o’ ending that’s so popular now… He seems very fresh, but still traditional,” she says.

Pop culture and social networks set name trends

Mateo’s arrival in the top 10 list was not the only surprise in the rankings.

Officials also noted that pop culture is having an impact on the list of baby names that are increasing in popularity the fastest.

Kaeli was the fastest-rising girl’s name last year, ranking 678th. In a press release released Friday, the Social Security Administration credited a social media influencer for the trend.

“Parents should have hit the ‘like’ button for YouTube and TikTok star Kaeli McEwen (aka Kaeli Mae), who routinely promotes a clean, tidy, neutral-aesthetic lifestyle,” the statement said. of press.

Influencer Kaeli Mae, pictured at New York Fashion Week in February, says she was surprised to learn of the growing popularity of her name. Credit: Manny Carabel/Getty Images

The news that her name was rising in popularity came as a surprise to McEwen, who has 14.7 million followers on TikTok, but so far hasn’t heard of anyone naming a baby after her.

“I was a little surprised to see that… During my childhood and even now, I don’t know any other ‘Kaeli’!” he told CNN in an emailed statement. “I love the spelling of my name, so it’s pretty cool to see it becoming more popular!”

Nameberry’s Kihm says social media may also have fueled the rising popularity of the second fastest-growing girl’s name in 2023: Alitzel.

“There was a very popular TikTok in Spanish that showed all these Native American girl names, and Alitzel was the first one, and it had over 1 million views,” she says.

The boy’s name Chozen also saw a huge rise in popularity, up to number 813 on the list, after a character with that name became a hero in the final season of “Cobra Kai,” according to the Safety Administration. Social.

Yuji Okumoto

Yuji Okumoto plays Chozen Toguchi in “Cobra Kai.” According to the US Social Security Administration, the name Chozen has become increasingly popular since the character became a hero in the Netflix series. Credit: Curtis Bonds/Netflix

Kihm traces the name’s growing popularity even earlier, to 2015, when NFL player Cam Newton named his son Chosen.

But one pop culture icon didn’t see much of a surge on the baby name charts last year, despite the box office success of the movie that starred her: Barbie.

According to official data, only 32 people in the United States named their daughters Barbie last year, which represents a slight increase from the previous year. The name did not make the list of the “1,000 best” baby names last year. Neither does Ken.

boy names

  1. Elijah
  2. Henry
  3. James
  4. Liam
  5. Luke
  6. Matthew
  7. Noah
  8. Oliver
  9. Theodore
  10. william

Girl’s names

  1. Sophia
  2. Ava
  3. Amelia
  4. olivia
  5. Evelyn
  6. Mine
  7. Emma
  8. charlotte
  9. Isabella
  10. Moon

Source: US Social Security Administration, 2023 data released May 10, 2024

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