Name Help: A sibling for Mason and NolanName Help is a series at Appellation Mountain. Every week, one reader’s name questions will be discussed.

We’re relying on thoughtful comments from the community to help expectant parents narrow down their name decisions. Thank you in advance for sharing your insight!

Jennica writes:

I have twin boys Nolan and Mason and we are now expecting our third!

I love that Nolan and Mason seem very balanced, modern and yet still relatively unique. I often get compliments how well they go together and how strong they sound.

But now what do I do for baby three? Do we choose a name that balances with them? Or go a whole new route?

Please read on for my reply, and leave your thoughtful suggestions in the comments.

Dear Jennica –

Congratulations on your new baby!

Nolan and Mason are very balanced. They make good twin names because, as you say, they feel similar in many ways, but still sound like two distinct, different choices.

Finding a third boy name that fits this pattern is certainly possible. You’re looking for a two-syllable, ends-with-n name, probably with a bright vowel sound and most likely originally a surname. Names like Easton and Tyson come to mind, or maybe Hudson or Landon, Ethan or Nathan.

But that seems like a very limiting set of criteria. Unless something jumps out at you as The Name immediately, I’d suggest you look for something that only matches two or three of your twins’ name characteristics. Why? First, should you ever add a fourth child to your family, a less rigid pattern is helpful for choosing yet another name. Second, you’d have very few names to choose from if you went this route – and few would be as nicely balanced as Mason and Nolan.

For a girl, the question is even trickier. And you drawn to tailored names like Harper and Maren? Or do you prefer names that feel a little more conventionally feminine? There’s no wrong answer, but that can make drafting a list feel truly challenging.

So let’s dive in!

A Brother for Mason and Nolan

Half of these are two-syllable names ending with ‘n’, but the other half have slightly different sounds. They’re all surname in origin, though many of them feel very familiar as given names in 2018, just like Nolan and Mason.

Bennett – Along with Emmett, Everett, Beckett, and Elliott, Bennett is one of those fast-rising surname names for boys that’s just slightly different, thanks to the -t ending. It could shorten to Ben, but I’ve yet to meet a boy with an -et ending name that didn’t use it in full.

Brennan – The downside: Brennan sounds an awful lot like Brendan and Brandon, so some confusion is inevitable. But it’s upbeat, Irish, and relatively uncommon. I like it especially as a brother for the equally Irish Nolan, but I think it works well with Mason, too.

Chase – Or maybe you’d prefer something shorter? Chase has the same polished, modern feel as Nolan and Mason, but the single syllable makes it stand out from your twins’ names.

Easton – Easton fits your established pattern perfectly, with a long E sound instead of Nolan’s O or Mason’s A. I’ll admit I like it quite a bit as a brother for Mason and Nolan, but my cautions apply. If you imagine you’ll be naming more children in the future, this could feel limiting.

Harrison – Because it’s three syllables, Harrison feels just different enough from your older boys’ names.

Lincoln – Lincoln makes for an Americana choice, one that feels rich with history. And yet, it’s got a cool sound that fits well with Mason and Nolan, too.

Parker – Just like -t ending names are slightly different, -r enders might be another good choice. Parker sprang to mind immediately, but I have lists of options.

Paxton – One more in the two-syllable/ends-with-n camp: Paxton. I think the ‘x’ makes it such an interesting choice. While it comes from an Old English surname related to an all-but-lost given name, for me it brings to mind the Latin word pax – peace.

A Sister for Nolan and Mason

When it comes to naming a girl, the choices are even greater! I’m sticking to surname-style names, but mostly with a non-n ending. The question for you is this: do you want it to be obvious that your three children are two sons and a daughter? Or would you consider naming your kids, say, Nolan, Mason, and Parker, knowing that no one could guess which was a girl? It comes down to personal preference, though I tend to err on the side of guessable.

Avery – A three-syllable surname-style name ending with y or ie might be a great sound with Mason and Nolan. Plenty of the choices lean feminine in use. Avery is one stylish option, and Everly is another. But rarities like Bellamy and Romilly could work, too.

Blair – Blair means field, and it was used in small numbers for boys over the years. But lately, it’s switched to the girls. Why? Television characters like Blair Warner from The Facts of Life in the 1980s and the more recent Blair Waldorf of Gossip Girl helped. But it also sounds just like the classic Claire. Spelling Blaire also appears in the current US Top 1000 for girls.

Eden – Not quite a surname name, Eden still shares that style and rhythm. The long E sound works well with Nolan and Mason, but still leans feminine.

Emerson – Emerson is used for boys and girls, so I’m not certain that it exactly fits my criteria. But I still it would be a great addition to your family!

Sage/Saige – Like Eden, Sage is more nature name than surname. But it’s not so dramatically different in style that Sage wouldn’t sound like a sister for Nolan and Mason. In fact, I think it’s just different enough.

Piper – Top Ten favorite Harper is an r-ending option for a daughter, but I like Piper best with Mason and Nolan.

Quinn – Maybe a single-syllable name would appeal? I love Quinn, with all its lively Irish style. There’s also Sloane, Lane/Laine, and lots of other possibilities.

Teagan – Just as Easton matches perfectly on the boys’ side, I think Teagan is a logical choice for a daughter. It comes from an Irish name meaning poet, which seems like quite the appealing association.

Overall, I really like Easton and Teagan if you want to stick to your established pattern. But if you’re inclined to branch out – and that’s almost certainly what I would do – then Parker and Piper get my vote. They share the same style, but with a sound that’s just slightly different.

But let’s open it up to the readers, because I know they’ll have some great suggestions. And I’d especially love to hear from parents of twins who welcomed another child later. What was it like naming your younger children?

So, let’s hear it: what would you name a brother or sister for Nolan and Mason?

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. Another boy name that I think would make a fabulous sibling to Nolan and Mason would be Lucas. It’s so strong and handsome and just sounds right. Nolan, Mason, and Lucas.

    Plus you have L, M, N which is kind of fun!

  2. Your pick of Elodie would be lovely with her brothers! I’ve always love Abigail too. There are many directions you could go for either a girl or boy name that would “go” with brothers Nolan and Mason. Would something like Sadie float your boat? Meredith? Holly? Tobin/Tobias/Toby comes to mind for a boy. Good luck!

  3. If you do like the surnames but the ones that to mean feel more feminie due to sounding like girls names, here are a could ideas…


  4. It seems with this new information you do not prefer the androgynous surnames for girls. Your three girls names feel very different to me, so I don’t know that I am anywhere close with these suggestions, but here are a few ideas…


  5. Wow everyone I am blown away! Thanks for all the suggestions! And thanks Abby for all the wonderful suggestions! When I was pregnant the first time before I knew it was twins or the gender my top girl name was Elodie. I’m wondering if it would still work. My name I was thinking of to match the boys names was Kailyn. Though I have adored Abigail since I was a little girl. But now these awesome suggestions make it so hard!

    For a boy still stuck lots of great names out there! I was actually trying to convince hubby of Harrison for quite some time! I don’t think I’ll have much trouble picking a boys name over a girls! Just too many girls names out there!

  6. For boys I especially like Elliott, Trevor, Cole, Grant, or Grady. I think Elliott or Grant are the best matches because style wise they fit in with Nolan and Mason; strong and handsome. Sound wise they’re different which won’t trap you in a pattern should you have a 4th child and they still leave the twins their twinny-ness if that makes sense. Nolan, Mason, and Elliott. Nolan, Mason, and and Grant.

    For girls I think any of the following work well: Ainsley, Brooke, Paige, Maren, Harper, Taylor, Hallie, Eden, Ava, Grace, Anna, Aubrey, Tessa.

  7. I have a Curtis and I think that would go really well here. I get the same feeling from it that I sense you get from your boys’ names – strong, recognizable but not at all common, surname-y but not overly so. Mine is 9 and it works really well for him.

    Nolan, Mason & Curtis,

  8. For the boys- I would add Hunter and Sawyer to the list. I agree with Abby that Piper for a girl sounds great with this set! I also like the suggestion of Sloane. Congrats!!

  9. I really like the idea in a single syllable strong name. Chase. Other names maybe. Rhys or Vaughn

    For Girls. I really like Blair.