girl names starting with JWhen it comes to girl names starting with J, we all know a Jennifer or a Jessica.

Maybe three of each.

But they weren’t the first wildly popular J names, not by a long shot. Joan had a good run. Julia, too. J names for girls been favorites for ages.

At the moment, though, it’s only the ninth most popular initial for girls. For boys, it comes in at #1. Plenty of J girl names are rising, and it’s hard to imagine a Top 100 without at least a J name or two for our daughters.



Elegant and spirited, Josephine fits with favorites like Katherine and Charlotte. And it’s following both of those favorites straight up the popularity charts.

JADE (#88)

A colorful gemstone name, we started naming our daughters Jade after a celebrity baby – Mick Jagger’s daughter, born way back in 1971. It fits with so many current trends, from word names to colorful choices.

JULIA (#112)

A name with ancient roots, Julia has ranked in the US Top 100 since 1980. It’s actually falling now, but remains a traditional favorite.

JUNIPER (#114)

A bouncing and spirited nature name, Juniper debuted in the US Top 1000 in 2011, and hasn’t slowed down since. It sounds like a logical successor to Jennifer, with a healthy dose of traditional June.

JOSIE (#119)

A Josephine nickname, Josie stands on its own – just like Sadie and Hattie. But because even more girls are named Josephine, it’s possible that Josie is even more popular among baby girl names than this ranking suggests.


Shakespeare’s Juliet started to trend early in the 2000s. But it has since been surpassed the earlier spelling, with the extra -te added.

JUNE (#172)

A month name with a long history of use as a first, classic June has more in common with Rose or Grace than Jazz or January.

JASMINE (#178)

One of the few Disney princess names to reach the US Top 100, we often credit Agrabah for the name’s success. But the 1992 animated feature gave their princess a name that was already rising dramatically. This floral favorite remains in heavy use.

JOURNEE (#195)

Another alternative spelling, Journee is based on Journey, a word name that suggests adventure and daring, too.


JULIANA (#220)

An elaboration of Julia in the key of so many long names for girls.

JORDYN (#235)

Jordan – as in Michael – became a 1990s favorite for boys and girls alike. Not only did the NBA legend inspire parents, but the Jordan River in the Holy Land has been borrowed as a given name since the Crusades. The Jordan spelling remains in the Top 100 for boys, but we seem to have settled on Jordyn as the feminine form.

JANE (#290)

Austen makes Jane impeccably literary.

JULIET (#293)

While Juliette ranks higher, the sparer spelling remains popular, too.

JOCELYN (#314)

Some will argue that Jocelyn has masculine roots, and that’s true – but so far back in history that few are aware. Instead, Jocelyn peaked in the twenty-first century, a tailored name in the key of Allison and Madison, Evelyn and Madelyn.

JOURNEY (#315)

A spiritual word name – or maybe a tribute to a wildly successful 1980s band. Journee

JOANNA (#321)

A Latinate form of Joan, the name spiked in 1984, thanks to Kool & the Gang’s chart-topping 1983 hit, “Joanna.”


An elaboration of Julia, sure to appeal to parents looking for long, elaborate names for a daughter.

JAYLA (#340)

Kayla meets girl names starting with J.

JULIETA (#441)

The Spanish form of Juliet.

JOY (#467)

A mini name with an ebullient meaning, Joy has long been used as a given name for girls in the US. Disney-Pixar’s 2015 Inside Out gave the name a tiny boost.

JOLENE (#485)

A Jo- name made immortal by Dolly Parton’s hit song.

JIMENA (#493)

Also spelled Ximena, as in the wife of medieval knight El Cid.


A smash hit from the 1960s, thanks to style icon and former First Lady Jackie Kennedy. At peak popularity, spellings like Jackline and Jacquelyn, plus Jacqui, were also often seen.


Another name that dominated a generation, we still love Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Lawrence. But the name has become quite rare for our daughters.

JORDAN (#504)

We tend to prefer Jordyn for girls, but this spelling still ranks.


JESSICA (#508)

A former top name, Shakesperean Jessica remains familiar, but is seldom heard for a girl.

JAZLYN (#516)

A little bit of Jasmine, a lot of jazz music, and that favorite feminine ending -lyn.

JAYLEEN (#607)

A creative invention, based on favorite sounds.

JALIYAH (#610)

Aaliyah with a J.

JOURNI (#625)

One more spelling for Journey and Journee.

JENNA (#635)

A Top 100 favorite from the peak Jennifer era, now eclipsed by names like Gemma.

JANELLE (#671)

A Jan and Jane spin-off.

JAZMIN (#688)

Jasmine with a little more jazz.

JEMMA (#700)

Speaking of Gemma, the G spelling is more popular, but J is used, too.

JENESIS (#709)

Genesis, spelled with a J.

JULIE (#715)

A 1960s and 70s favorite, now eclipsed by Juliette.

JOVIE (#733)

A rising possibility, Jovie means merry – as in Zooey Deschanel’s character in 2001 modern holiday classic Elf. 

JAMIE (#734)

Sometimes seen as a feminine form of James, Jamie rocketed up the charts in the 1970s. The Bionic Woman introduced the world to Jaime Sommers, at the same time the name Amy ranked in the US Top Ten.

JAYLANI (#763)

Hawaiian -lani names are trending, and they meet up with the letter J for this invention.

JREAM (#777)

Dream with a J.

JOELLE (#783)

A feminine form of Joel, or just another Jo-meets-feminine-ending creation.

JOLIE (#789)

The French word for pretty, popularized by actress Angelina Jolie.

JOHANNA (#792)

An alternate spelling of Joanna.

JESSIE (#796)

A Jessica nickname, familiar to generations of children thanks to the cowgirl in the Toy Story movies.

JAYDA (#830)

Jade with an extra syllable.

JADA (#832)

Before Jayda was in use, actress Jada Pinkett Smith put her name on parents’ radar.

JIANNA (#856)

Popular Gianna, spelled with a J.

JAZMINE (#863)

Another Jasmine option.

JUDITH (#873)

Traditional Judith was a Top Ten favorite in the US circa 1940. Today it feels traditional and overlooked, an obvious alternative to Eleanor.

JUSTICE (#879)

A unisex virtue name, rich with significance.

JANIYAH (#893)

All the girl names starting with J and so many -iah ending favorites met to form this novel name.

JAYLAH (#973)

Jayla plus an H.

JULISSA (#956)

Legendary Mexican singer and actor Julissa was born Julia Isabel. This elaboration feels like something just a little different in our age of Juliette.

JOYCE (#986)

A name with centuries of history behind it, English-speaking parents tend to use it because it brings to mind joy.



A tropical flower, Jacaranda is seldom heard as a given name, but picks up on Lily, Rose, and Jasmine.


A Spanish form of the flower name Hyacinth, Jacinta and Jacinda seem more accessible in English.


Feminie forms of long-time masculine favorite Jacob. Actor Cobie Smulders was born Jacoba.


Actor January Jones put her unusual given name on parents’ radar. Jones was named for a character in a novel.


A Casey-inspired J name.


Kaylee’s cousin.


Another Jay-meets-popular-ending. Spellings and similar choices like Jaylynn, Jaylin, Jaelynn – to name just a few – are seen, too.


A musical possibility for girls that owes a little something to the success of Jasmine.


It looks like a mash-up of Jennifer and Jessica, but Jenica has Romanian roots, too.


An Old Testament rarity that fits right in today.


An older form of Jasmine, elaborate and lovely.


A glittering word name made famous by Grammy-nominated singer Jewel and her family, known for their rugged lives in the Alaskan wilderness.


A long-time favorite, now surprisingly overlooked.


Traditionally, a jinx brings bad luck. But it sounds sparkly and happy, and sometimes surfaces as a nickname. Halle Berry played NSA agent Giancinta “Jinx” Johnson in James Bond film Die Another Day. In the 1950s, model-actor-talk show host Eugenia “Jinx” Falkenberg made it famous.


Nicknames for Josephine and other Jo-names.


A joyful name, Jubilee also has comic book ties, thanks to the X-Men.


The sparky, high-energy nickname for elegant Judith, once popular in itis own right.


A Julie name that remains familiar, without ranking in the current US Top 1000.


A bright and energetic goddess name, Juno feels like an update to gentle June.


Justin ranks in the boys’ Top 200 and has for years, while feminine form Justine remains overlooked.



In German, Dutch, Slovak, and other languages, John becomes Jan. Add an ‘a’ and you’ll arrive at Jana.


Jane meets Vanessa.


A nickname for Jane dating way back to the Middle Ages, Janet became a go-to choice for American parents from the 1920s through the 60s.


Likely created for a novel, Janice has faded since the middle of the twentieth century, but odds are this name will (eventually) stage a comeback.


From heroic and saintly Joan of Arc to controversial Hollywood icon Joan Crawford, this name has history to spare. A Top Ten favorite in the 1930s, it’s been rarely heard as a child’s name since the early 1990s.


Adding an ‘a’ is a time-honored way of making a masculine name feminine. So why not Johna? Or is it Jonna?


Rare flower name not related to John, but beginning with the right sound.


In Serbian, Jovan is John; that makes Jovana the logical feminine form. Jovanna might owe a little something to Italian Giovanna, too.


Jeanne is the French form of Jane and Joan. (Jean is their equivalent of John.) It’s about as traditional as it gets; Joan of Arc is Jeanne d’Arc in French. American parents embraced it for much of the twentieth century, but today it’s lingering in obscurity.


An elaboration of Jeanne.


The Spanish equivalent of Jane and Janet, Juana and Juanita are, just like many of the feminine forms of John listed here, not terribly common in the US today. But they’re instantly recognizable picks.


No list of girl names starting with J is complete without a mention of James.

While it’s controversial, more parents have considered James for their daughters in recent years. It’s become something of a go-to middle. Sometimes, as with Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, it’s a family name.

As of 2022, over 12,000 boys were named James – along with just 84 girls. So while it sparks heated discussions, it also remains very, very rare as a given name. As a middle? It does seem to be catching on in slightly greater numbers, but not enough to consider James feminine by any definition.

What are your favorite girl names starting with J?

First published on October 12, 2020, this post was revised substantially and re-published on March 13, 2023 and again on October 2, 2023.

baby names beginning with J girl names beginning with J

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. I feel like people naming their baby girl James might as well have named her “Wishing you were male”

    It’s so cruel

    1. I get that perspective, but I doubt that the parents see it that way. It’s tempting to look for hard, bright lines when it comes to naming, but they are always fuzzy and gray.

  2. Jacana is a tropical bird… fits in with Robin, Raven, and Dove… but it has a little more flair.

  3. Juliana is a favorite and was on our short list but we went with another J name and used Jayla because it had more meaning to us.