“What’s in a name?” asked Juliet rhetorically in Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet. “That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” She had a point – though it probably didn’t cross her mind that one day people might name their children not after fragrant flowers but after their favorite perfumes.
In fact, it’s not just perfumes. These days children are being named after all kinds of fashion and beauty brands. To identify the most popular of these, 24/7 Tempo reviewed research collected from government sites in the U.S. and U.K. by the U.K.-based jewelry retail site Jewellery Box. The site considered names for both girls and boys registered in both countries between 2000 and 2018, excluding common names that might be associated with brands.
Interestingly, both lists are headed by the name Armani. Between 2000 and 2018, 7,489 girls and 9,021 boys were given this name. Like some of the other entries on our list it is, or at least was, a surname – associated with the Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani. (These were the most popular never-before-seen names in 2020.)
Salvatore also appears on both lists, at No. 2 for boys and No. 6 for girls. It’s the first name of Salvatore Ferragamo, another Italian designer associated with luxury goods, including shoes, leather goods, and watches. Valentino – the name of an Italian fashion house founded by Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani – comes in at No. 3 for boys and No. 10 for girls.
French brands are also popular. More than 6,600 girls were named Chanel between 2000 and 2018. (Coco Chanel, of course, was famous for the little black dress and Chanel No. 5 perfume.) Dior is another French house and a popular name for both girls and boys. (Here are 25 American names popular for the first time.)
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