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Nonbinary Names Achieve Gender Parity
Nonbinary Names Achieve Gender Parity
Apr 19, 2024 5:39 AM

  Nonbinary names are balanced in the proportion of girls to boys who receive the name in a given year. At Nameberry, we define this as no less than 35 percent, but no more than 65 percent of a single sex. Compare that to unisex names, which are given to the minority sex at least 10 percent of the time.

  Parents may choose nonbinary names to offer their child freedom from gender stereotypes or conventional gender identity. These truly gender-neutral names give children space to explore gender and mold their name to fit their identity.

  Other parents are choosing these nonbinary baby names for their modern style rather than strict gender parity. Gender-neutral names tend to be nontraditional and have relatively recent histories, particularly when used for girls.

  One thing to consider is that names move in and out of gender-neutral status. Until recently, Charlie was largely reserved for boys, but now it’s given to girls and boys in equal numbers. Likewise, Jamie was overwhelmingly feminine for much of the 20th century, with a decade of gender neutrality in the 1970s. After a sharp drop in instances among baby girls, Jamie once again qualifies as gender-neutral (for now).

  Let’s dive into the names considered truly gender-neutral today:

  

Top Gender-Neutral Names

  In 2020, Parker took over the title of the top gender-neutral name. Parker had been considered unisex for years, but 2020 was the first year it achieved gender-neutral status. As it falls in popularity for boys and gains for girls, Parker is more balanced in gender distribution. Parker now ranks at Number 94 for boys and Number 115 for girls.

  The previous title holder was Charlie, now the third-most common gender-neutral name.

  Charlie is also one of the most balanced names when it comes to sex distribution, along with Blake, Finley, Tatum, Azariah, Bellamy, Jamie, Robin, and appropriately, Justice.

  The most common gender-neutral baby names rank in the Top 1000 for both sexes. Names are listed with the ratio of girls to boys given the name in 2022.

  Parker (38:62)

  River (36:64)

  Charlie (53:47)

  Blake (48:52)

  Emerson (58:42)

  Finley (53:47)

  Phoenix (43:57)

  Remington (35:65)

  Tatum (52:48)

  Rory (44:56)

  Dakota (56:44)

  Ari (41:59)

  Shiloh (60:40)

  Alexis (57:43)

  Armani (47:53)

  Remy (35:65)

  Salem (64:36)

  Legacy (65:35)

  Skyler (58:42)

  Briar (63:37)

  Azariah (53:47)

  Drew (37:63)

  Amiri (36:64)

  Bellamy (48:52)

  Ocean (45:55)

  Jamie (47:53)

  Sevyn (64:46)

  Dior (62:48)

  Chandler (40:60)

  Tru (40:60)

  Murphy (62:48)

  Layne (42:58)

  Justice (49:51)

  Robin (50:50)

  Murphy and Tru join the list after becoming more feminine between 2021 and 2022, while Sevyn and Dior became masculine enough to qualify. Amiri is a new addition to the list after rising into the Top 1000 for girls in 2022.

  Names no longer gender-neutral include Milan and Denver, both of which became more masculine. Landry leaves the list after falling out of the Top 1000 for both sexes.

  

Rising Gender-Neutral Names

  The rare names that are rising for both sexes include Traveling Lite names like Issa, Sora, and Yael, three-syllable names that end in I such as Akari, Azari, and Jelani, and modern virtue names like Trust, Wisdom, and Ever.

  Akari (51:49)

  Aster (65:35)

  Azari (63:37)

  Bleu (39:61)

  Blue (44:56)

  Cove (38:62)

  Conley (46:54)

  Crimson (63:37)

  Divine (53:47)

  Drue (59:41)

  Ever (41:59)

  Halston (58:42)

  Issa (45:55)

  Jelani (39:61)

  Kit (55:45)

  Lou (46:54)

  Luxe (52:48)

  Rowe (39:61)

  Sora (54:46)

  Trust (36:64)

  Valentine (44:56)

  Winslow (64:36)

  Wisdom (43:67)

  Yael (43:67)

  

Names Changing in Distribution

  The following unique unisex names are rising for one sex but are stable or dropping for the other. Should they continue on their trajectories, the balance could shift, and we could see them lose their gender-neutral (even, eventually, unisex) status. For the time being, these names achieve gender parity:

  Arbor (53:47)

  Arden (61:39)

  Auden (46:54)

  Callaway (46:54)

  Cypress (39:61)

  Golden (48:52)

  Hollis (38:62)

  Huntley (53:47)

  Jules (47:53)

  Koi (41:59)

  Lake (35:65)

  Linden (48:52)

  Lowen (50:50)

  Merritt (64:36)

  Montana (64:36)

  Peace (57:43)

  Rhythm (58:42)

  Ridley (58:42)

  Rumi (65:35)

  Soul (40:60)

  Storm (52:48)

  Timber (52:48)

  Tenzin (42:58)

  

The Best of the Rest

  They may not be white-hot, but these gender-neutral baby names get the Nameberry seal of approval. All names were given to at least 50 babies in 2022, the last year on record.

  Bowie (36:64)

  Breeze (58:42)

  Brighton (49:51)

  Campbell (48:52)

  Charleston (60:40)

  Ellington (64:36)

  Gentry (45:55)

  Harlem (35:65)

  Honor (51:49)

  Indiana (62:38)

  Larkin (62:38)

  Lexington (46:54)

  Marvel (50:50)

  Perry (43:57)

  Ramsey (36:64)

  True (52:48)

  Wynn (54:46)

  

About the Author

  

Sophie Kihm

LinkSophie Kihm's Personal Website

  Sophie Kihm has been writing for Nameberry since 2015. She has contributed stories on the top 2020s names, Gen Z names, and cottagecore baby names. Sophie is Nameberry’s resident Name Guru to the Stars, where she suggests names for celebrity babies. She also manages the Nameberry Instagram and Pinterest.

  Sophie Kihm's articles on names have run on People, Today, The Huffington Post, and more. She has been quoted as a name expert by The Washington Post, People, The Huffington Post, and more. You can follow her personally on Instagram or Pinterest, or contact her at sophie@nameberry.com. Sophie lives in Chicago.

  View all of Sophie Kihm's articlesChevron - Right

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