These 10 celebrities actually inspired baby name booms

Which celebs do you reckon will make the cut?

Celebrity baby name booms
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Which celebs do you reckon will make the cut?

Choosing a baby name can be challenging but, fun fact: celebs can actually have a major influence on the final decision. Sometimes without even knowing, parents will look to the celebrity community for baby name ideas - and it sure has shown in new research documenting the rise in particular names over the years.

Findings from MyHeritage, a family heritage platform, has revealed that several baby name booms over the last 50 years were, in fact, inspired by certain celebrities.

They opened up their archives to analyse almost 300 years of records and cross referenced them with more recent baby name data.

Analysts found that celebrities like Emma Thompson and Tom Cruise have actually inspired new parents across the UK to name their babies after them.

Keen to read the full list of the most popular baby names, which celebs inspired them, and when? Keep scrolling.

10 celebrities that actually inspired a baby name boom

1. John

John was the second most popular name of the 1950s, and fifth most popular name in the 1960s, according to MyHeritage's data. They reckon this name was influenced by three well-known celebs at the time: 50's movie star John Wayne, 60's President John F. Kennedy, and 60's pop icon John Lennon

2. Julie

 Similarly, Julie was the second most popular baby name of the 1960's. Researchers reckon actress Julie Andrews kickstarted the trend for this name, after her iconic role in The Sound of Music.

Celebrities causing a baby name boom

3. Jacqueline

This girl's baby name was fourth most popular in the 1906's. The Kennedy's were clearly popular, as experts reckon this was thanks to the First Lady of the time, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

4. Paul

Paul was actually the second most popular boy's baby name of the 1960's, which they reckon was influenced by The Beatles band member John McCartney. He first shot to fame during the 60's, placing his namesake firmly in second place for that decade. 

Celebrities causing a baby name boom

5. Richard  

Richard is actually quite a historical name, with kings of England holding the name long before the 1970's. Nonetheless, it shot to fifth most popular name of that decade thanks to Richard Nixon, the 37th U.S President. He was president from 1969 to 1974. 

6. Lisa

You likely can't think of any famous Lisa's who shot to fame in the 1970's. That's because it was actually Elvis Presley who made the name iconic when he called his daughter Lisa in the late 1960's. Many parents were inspired by his choice of name, say researchers, with shot it being the fifth most popular baby name in 70's England. 

7. Christopher

Moving on to the '80's, Christopher was the most popular boy's name of the decade. Why? Well, researchers say thanks to 80's movie stars Christopher Reeve and Christopher Walken. They both shot to fame during that decade.

8. Emma

Fourth most popular girls name in the 1980's? Emma, which analysts share was prompted by Emma Thompson's rise to fame. 4th place in the 1980s. Emma Thompson climbed to fame in the late 80s, and so did her name. Good examples: actresses Emma Watson and Emma Corrin, both born in the early 90's.

Celebrity baby name booms

9. Jessica

In the 90's, it was fictional characters taking the top spot, according to the researchers. Jessica was the third most popular name of the decade, soon after fictional Jessica Rabbit graced screens in the movie Who Censored Roger Rabbit.

10. Thomas

And finally, the most popular boy's name of the 90's was Thomas - perhaps unsurprisingly, with stars Tom Hanks and Tom Cruise rising to fame in Hollywood.

With that said, in recent years, the trend seems to be set on finding a more unique baby name.

Take Kylie Jenner’s daughter Stormi, for example; clearly, her parents have gone out of their way to make ensure the originality of their babies name.

What do you reckon - would you stick to a more popular, traditional name, or opt for something more unique? 

Reporting by Paloma Mairone

Ally Head
Senior Health, Sustainability and Relationships Editor

Ally Head is Marie Claire UK's Senior Health, Sustainability, and Relationships Editor, nine-time marathoner, and Boston Qualifying runner. Day-to-day, she works across site strategy, features, and e-commerce, reporting on the latest health updates, writing the must-read health and wellness content, and rounding up the genuinely sustainable and squat-proof gym leggings worth *adding to basket*. She's won a BSME for her sustainability work, regularly hosts panels and presents for events like the Sustainability Awards, and is a stickler for a strong stat, too, seeing over nine million total impressions on the January 2023 Wellness Issue she oversaw. Follow Ally on Instagram for more or get in touch.