Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018Let’s look at the fastest rising boy names 2018.

Plenty of lists look at rank change, but this list focuses on the actual number of births. Why? It turns out that it might be a better predictor of future popularity than rank change. After all, rank is relative. We know more boys received the 115th most popular name than the 123rd name … but by how much? Two children, twenty-two children, or more?

Especially closer to the top of the list, a name can fall in use, and still hold steady – or even sometimes gain – in terms of rankings. But the birth numbers keep things much clearer.

So let’s look at the fastest rising boy names 2018, the names that gained the most in terms of actual births. The data reflects all births registered between January 1st and December 31st of 2017, as released in the May 2018 update from the US Social Security Administration.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: The List

  1. Logan, +2,748
  2. Maverick, +1,751
  3. Ezekiel, +1,350
  4. Mateo, +1,181
  5. Lincoln, +1,032
  6. Theodore, +1,018
  7. Matias, +643
  8. Leo, +642
  9. Jameson, +639
  10. Rowan, +637
  11. Liam, +530
  12. Kyrie, +513
  13. Greyson, +508
  14. Asher, +497
  15. Santiago, +480
  16. Ezra, +434
  17. Rhett, +422
  18. Elias, +420
  19. Xander, +397
  20. Thiago, +396
  21. Beau, +377
  22. Waylon, +366
  23. Elliott, +330
  24. Luca, +327
  25. Legend, +313

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Logan

Current US popularity rank: #5

Logan makes the fastest rising girl and fastest rising boy names lists, the only one to repeat for both genders this year. It was a banner year for the long-time favorite. It’s been in the Top 100 since 1991, but had fallen slightly in recent years. The big reversal in course is all about the silver screen. Early 2017 gave us Logan, another moving starring Hugh Jackman as Wolverine of X-Men fame. Summer brought Logan Lucky, a heist comedy starring Channing Tatum as Jimmy Logan. Millions of movie posters plus the appeal of two popular leading men bolstered this modern favorite straight into the Top Ten for the first time ever, and made it the fastest of the fastest rising boy names 2018.

Read more about Logan here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Maverick

Current US popularity rank: #85

This name started out in the Wild West, thanks to long-running television Western Maverick. Then it took to the wild blue yonder as the call sign of Tom Cruise’s character in Top Gun. It’s gained steadily in use since the 1990s, through a political campaign and lots of discussion on baby name sites. But it’s accelerated in recent years. Teen Mom’s Maci Bookout welcomed son Maverick Reed in mid-2016, probably fueling at least some of that rise. But it’s also just the age of Maverick: big, bold word names that have gone mainstream.

Read more about Maverick here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Ezekiel

Current US popularity rank: #82

An Old Testament boy name with a great meaning – God strengthens – and cool nickname Zeke – what’s not to love? Used in small numbers in the US for decades, Ezekiel really picked up steam in the twenty-first century. It follows names like Ezra up the chart, but also replaces falling favorites, like Gabriel and Alexander.

Read more about Ezekiel here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Mateo

Current US popularity rank: #42

Traditional Matthew remains a Top 20 choice, but Mateo – the Spanish language version of the name – is gaining fast. Footballers Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo both have sons by the name; there’s a Mateo on the Disney Channel’s Elena of Avalor – Elena made the girls’ list; and he’s the adorable baby at the heart of the drama in Jane the Virgin. No surprise we’ve seen this name skyrocket! It also points to a longer-term trend: Spanish language names that feel effortless in English, are increasingly popular choices for the many bilingual families raising children in the US today.

I’ve yet to write about Mateo, but you can read more about Matteo here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Lincoln

Lincoln: Baby Name of the DayCurrent US popularity rank: #41

An Americana boy name with a lot of strength, Lincoln has climbed the US popularity charts quickly in recent years. What explains the rapid rise? Maybe it’s our love of boys’ names that feel modern, but have roots – after all, Lincoln has appeared in the US Top 1000 nearly every year since the rankings began in 1880. Or maybe it’s a long run of pop culture references. Teen Mom star Kailyn Lowry welcomed a son named Lincoln in late 2013; The CW’s The 100 includes a character by the name; so do television series Fringe, The Loud House, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. That’s more than enough to push this name straight up the charts.

Read more about Lincoln here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Theodore

Current US popularity rank: #62

Theodore is no stranger to this list, appearing in previous years. It’s an undeniable classic, with years of history behind it. But while it’s never left the US Top 1000, at the beginning of this century it hovered in the low 300s, mostly reserved for singing chipmunks and historical figures. Today it’s changed completed. Thanks to on-trend nicknames Theo and Teddy, this classic boy name cannot slow down.

Read more about Theodore here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Matias

Current US popularity rank: #236

It’s not just Mateo bounding up the charts. Matias is on a roll, too. Strictly speaking, it’s the Spanish form of Matthias. Both names come from the same Hebrew roots, but Matthew has been more popular in the English-speaking world. It’s popular throughout the Spanish-speaking world. The -s enders have traditionally lagged behind Matthew, and even the -o ending forms, but that might change. After all, names like Elias and Miles have become quite popular.

I’ve yet to write about Matias, but check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Leo

Current US popularity rank: #61

Compact but complete, a mini name with maximum impact, Leo appeals to parents after vintage revivals and those who favor big, bold boy names, too. In addition to Leo, there are five more Leo- names in the current US Top 1000, plus Lionel and Leandro, and most of them gained last year.

Read more about Leo here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Jameson

Current US popularity rank: #100

Take classic James, add in a healthy dose of Harrison and Jackson and a shot of whiskey, and you’ll arrive at Jameson. While it’s famous as a brand of Irish whiskey, that’s not the only association for this name. Singer Pink gave the name to her son in 2016; that same year, Netflix series The Ranch introduced us to Jameson Bennett, brother of Ashton Kutcher’s character, Colt. The character is no longer part of the series, but it may be enough to launch Jameson even farther up the charts. It also makes a great alternative for parents who want to honor a loved one named James.

I’ve yet to write about Jameson. Check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Rowan

Rowan: Baby Name of the DayCurrent US popularity rank: #140

A friendly Irish surname name, Rowan continues to gain in use for girls and boys alike. (Though it remains slightly more popular for our sons.) It’s also a nature name, in key of Willow and River, and a color name, too. Nickname-proof and modern without feeling invented, it’s easy to imagine parents after something just a little different landing on Rowan. It barely registered in the US Top 1000 prior to the year 2000, but today it’s a modern staple.

Read more about Rowan here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Liam

Liam: Baby Name of the DayCurrent US popularity rank: #1

After a few years as runner-up to Noah, Liam has moved into the top spot. Not bad for a William-nickname that had never even cracked the Top 1000 half a century ago. Leading man Liam Neeson gets credit for at least some of the name’s rise, as does Liam Hemsworth and a long list of fictional characters by the name. Just like Jameson might be an updated honor name for James, the same could be true for William and Liam. But this Irish appellation is also popular with Spanish-speaking families, putting Liam in the same category as Mateo and Matias.

Read more about Liam here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Kyrie

Current US popularity rank: #215

Back in 1986, a pop group scored a hit with “Kyrie,” singing kyrie elieson – Lord, have Mercy. The band acknowledged the song’s spiritual meaning, but that may have been missed by the wider audience. Kyrie briefly spiked as a girls’ name, but didn’t catch on. Instead, it took off for boys after college basketball star Kyrie Irving was picked first in the NBA draft. Irving had a good year in 2016, winning the NBA Championship with his former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers. He remains in the spotlight. One note: while the Greek word is pronounced with three syllables – keer-ee-ay – Kyrie is said phonetically, ky-ree.

I’ve yet to write about Kyrie, but check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Greyson

Current US popularity rank: #80

Zoey eclipsed Zoe. Aiden sailed past Aidan. And nowadays, the original Caitlin looks like a dressed-up respelling of 90s favorite Kaitlyn. In other words, the most popular spelling of a name is always subject to change. These days, Grayson is gaining slowly, while Greyson attempts to catch up. Grey and Greysen also climbed this year, suggested that the ‘e’ might soon become the preferred spelling of the name. Jersey Shore alum JWoww is among the high profile parents with a Greyson.

I’ve yet to write about Greyson, but you can read about Grayson here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Asher

Current US popularity rank: #59

Asher is another frequent flyer on the fastest rising list. An Old Testament name with a great meaning – happy – Asher shares the ends-in-r style of so many chart-toppers, from Connor to Hunter. We’re all about A names these days, and Asher appears in Lois Lowry’s enduring 1993 young adult novel The Giver. As a generation grew up reading the story, some may have filed it away for future use – and they’re using it now, in big numbers.

Read more about Asher here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Santiago

Current US popularity rank: #93

Just in case you doubt the impact of Spanish-speaking Americans, may I direct you to Santiago, a new entry into the US Top 100? In fairness, it’s appeared in the US Top 1000 most years for more than a century, and not so long ago, Diego ranked about as high. A smoosh of Saint James, Santiago is also familiar as a place name. At the moment, Santiago is wildly popular throughout the Spanish and Portuguese speaking world. It’s long and romantic, and terribly appealing to the same parents who made Sophia and Isabella smash hits.

Read more about Santiago here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Ezra

Current US popularity rank: #69

Another veteran of the hottest boy names list, Biblical, literary Ezra is buoyed by that interesting, edgy sound. There’s nothing quite like Ezra. And while it’s old school and Old Testament, it feels at home in the twenty-first century, too. Ezra Jack Keats wrote and illustrated the groundbreaking The Snowy Day. It’s more popular today than ever before, with a handful of pop culture references to keep it top of mind for parents today.

Read more about Ezra here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Rhett

Current US popularity rank: #180

For ages, the only Rhett was Butler, the romantic hero of Gone With the Wind. The name didn’t even crack the Top 1000 until the mid-1950s, decades after the bestseller-turned-blockbuster made a splash. Instead, a long-forgotten crime movie revived Rhett, and more recently, it’s been boosted by country music. But maybe this name succeeds mainly on sound – short and strong, and rather dashing.

Read more about Rhett here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Elias

Current US popularity rank: #78

Elias is cousin to current Top Ten name Elijah. The ‘s’ ending version appears in the New Testament. But it’s more than that, too. With -s ending names like Miles and Silas in favor in recent years, it’s a sound parents appreciate.

I’ve yet to write about Elias. Check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Xander

Xander: Baby Name of the DayCurrent US popularity rank: #163

Traditional Alexander has slipped out of the Top Ten in recent years, but Xander – just Xander – continues to gain. Credit goes to two things: that stylish letter X, and a long-running character on Joss Whedon’s cult favorite, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Vin Diesel wore the name, too, as Xander Cage in three xXx action movies. It might be more popular than it appears, because at least some of those many Alexanders might use this as a nickname.

Read more about Xander here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Thiago

Current US popularity rank: #216

Like Santiago, Thiago is a form of James, though this spelling is more typically Portuguese. Despite the extra ‘h’, it sounds exactly like Tiago. (But hey, it works for Theresa.) Some of the name’s rise is probably about that vibrant -o ending, and some of it might simply be due to parents looking for traditional, but fresh, spins on Spanish-language classics.

I’ve yet to write about Thiago, but check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Beau

Beau: Baby Name of the DayCurrent US popularity rank: #156

Beau made it big this year, but it’s not just Beau. Bodhi and Bowen and Boone were all up, too, suggesting that the sound appeals to parents. Tori Spelling, who always seems to be one step ahead of the trends, welcomed son Beau Dean in March of 2017. The name reads Southern gentleman, but in an upbeat, accessible way. It’s a name that wears cowboy boots and rides horses, more than a seersucker suit and a mint julep. That said, I’ve heard Beau everywhere in the US, suggesting it’s the kind of universal favorite that will continue to climb.

Read more about Beau here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Waylon

Current US popularity rank: #162

Waylon Jennings recorded his first country music hit way back in 1959, but it would take another two decades before he became a household name as an originator of the style called outlaw country. His son and grandson are also named Waylon, though they’re called Shooter and Blackjack. Shooter is a musician in his own right; Shooter and Drea de Matteo became parents to Blackjack in 2011. None of this explains the name’s rise, but I think it just sort of fits. It has the long ‘a’ of Aiden and Mason, the two-syllable, ends-in-n sound of Jackson and Landon, and it shares the same wild west vibe as Wyatt and Beau.

I’ve yet to write about Waylon; check back and I’ll update when I do.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Elliott

Current US popularity rank: #160

One t or two? That’s the challenge with Elliott and Elliot. Unlike lots of names with multiple common spellings, there’s never really been a clear winner. This year, Elliott surged again, to come in just ahead of Elliot at #161. But both spellings have leapt up the charts over the last few years, a surname name that feels more like a first. Or at least a generation grew up with Elliotts in Pete’s Dragon and E.T. Today we’re naming our sons accordingly.

I’ve yet to write about Elliott, but you can read more about Elliot here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Luca

Current US popularity rank: #130

As Italian as Giovanni, Luca takes long-time favorite Luke and makes it even cooler. Suzanne Vega sang about Luka in 1987; it took the arrival of Goran Visnjic’s character Dr. Luka Kovac on smash-hit medical drama ER in the year 1999 to put Luca into the Top 1000. (The k-spelling has climbed, too.) Along the way, boys’ names ending with -a have become mainstream favorites – just look at Noah.

Read more about Luca here.

Fastest Rising Boy Names 2018 Update: Legend

Current US popularity rank: #255

If Maverick’s ascent into the Top 100 surprised you, check out this fast rising boy name. Legend is every bit as bold and dramatic, a word name with a cool sound that might be a little tough to live up to. Will Smith’s 2007 movie I Am Legend kick-started this name’s quick ascent, and credit goes to singer John Legend, too – after all, his daughter’s name, Luna, tops the fastest rising girl names list.

I’ve yet to write about Legend, but check back and I’ll update when I do.

That’s it for the fastest rising boy names 2018. Did any of your favorites make the list?

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. Interesting datas but it may be misleading. I checked out Logan because of a personal interest in that name. In the case of Logan, a startling 2748 more baby boys received the name Logan in 2016 than in 2017. But when you look at the total number of boys given the name in 2014 — 13,637 (compared to 13,974 in 2017), the name netted only 337 more boys being given the name three years later. The number of boys called Logan DECREASED in both 2015 and 2016 — 727 fewer boys in 2015 and an additional 1690 fewer boys in 2016.

    Year / Number of baby boys named Logan / + or – from previous year / percent of boys named Logan
    2014 13,637 / +1288 / 0.6670%
    2015 12,910 / -727 / 0.6334%
    2016 11,226 / -1690 / 0.5564%
    2017 13,973 / +2748 / 0.7118%

    Thus comparing 2017 to 2014, with the previous high number of boys named Logan, only 337 additional baby boys were called Logan in 2017.

    As for the rankings, that depends on the number of baby boys born in a particular year and how many different names were given.

    In 2014: Logan ranked #13 with 0.6670% of baby boy named Logan; apply that percentage to 2017 figures: Logan would rank #11, just outside the Top 10.

    In 2017 Logan ranked #5 with 0.7118% of baby boys named Logan; apply that percentage to 2014 figures: Logan would have ranked #9.

    1. Fact is Logan was falling in numbers, and last year it managed to gain back some of its popularity.
      Of course the numbers from a few years back were different, its been a well known case that boy names (and names in general) are becoming less and less focused on popular names and are becoming more spread out, so to speak. The number 50 name on the rank these days, has far less babies named if you compare it to the number 50 rank from 10 years ago. That’s just how it is.