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Unisex Baby Names 1995 to 2005

 

Unisex Baby Names 1995-2005

In 1995 in the United States, 77 names ranked in the Top 1000 in popularity for both boys and girls, according to baby name data from the Social Security Administration. Of those 77 unisex baby names, 67 were “unique,” while 10 were variants, such as Devon, Devin, or Devan.

By 2005, the number of unisex, or androgynous, names appearing on male and female Top 1000 lists had shrunk to 64, including 53 unique names. That’s a drop of about 20% in unisex names over the decade.

The drop is surprising for a couple of reasons. For one thing, people often assume that as more “made-up” names (such as Rylee) enter the language, or as more “placenames” become baby names (think Dakota), more of these names are unisex. That may be true, but there simply aren’t that many “made-up” unisex names in the Top 1000, for either 1995 or 2005.

What did change between 1995 and 2005 were the names themselves. Of the 77 unisex names in 1995, fully 50% (38 names) lost their unisex identity by 2005. Discounting those situations where both names fell out of favor, the name more often moved to the male side of the table rather than the female, contrary to conventional wisdom about unisex names.

Some notable names that shook off their female challengers by 2005 include Alex, Adrian, Blake, and Carson. The female popularity ranking for those four names dropped out of the Top 1000 by 2005. On the flip side, the unisex names Dana, Erin, Leslie, and Madison muscled their male counterparts out of the Top 1000 over the same period.

By 2005, 23 new names joined the old guard of unisex names. Two names previously popular as single gender names that are now seeing growth as a unisex name are Dylan and Hayden.

What to make of these numbers? Certain names seem to be stubbornly unisex, with neither side admitting defeat and slinking away. Most of  America’s Top Ten Unisex Baby Names fall into this category. But, as people have noted before, over time there is a tendency for most unisex names to end up female. Of the names that were unisex in both 1995 and 2005, and where a trend is clear, 13 are trending to the female side, while just 8 are trending to the male side. But on the contrary, names from 1995 that lost their unisex appeal tended to become more male!

What’s clear is that new names come onto this list all the time, and often, older male names from previous generations find rebirth as unisex names. Addison and Parker are both traditional male names that disappeared from the Top 1000 in the mid-20th century, only to reappear as unisex names towards the end of the century.  

Who can say which way a name will ultimately go? The traditional male name Drew beat back female challengers over the last decade, despite the example of actress Drew Barrymore. On the other hand, the traditional male name Reese is as popular today for boys as it was in the 1880’s, but a new generation of girls, perhaps inspired by actress Reese Witherspoon, is trying to make Reese their own, and the name is currently twice as popular with girls as boys.

Maybe it’s the Academy Award that makes all the difference.

For the most recent information about unisex baby names, see our main unisex baby names page.

2005 Unisex Baby Names


Name
Boy's Rank
Girl's Rank

Ten Year Trend
Addison
583
107
Old male name. Trends female.
Alexis
133
13
Trends female.
Amari
410
487
Increasing popularity. Trends about equal.
Angel
32
147
Trends male.
Ariel
549
222
Declining popularity. Trends female.
Armani
719
954
New since the 90's. Mostly male
Ashton
107
778
Strong trend to male.
Avery
215
66
Trends female.
Bailey
512
108
Strong trend to female.
Cameron
52
263
Trends male.
Campbell
923
700
Newly popular. Trends to female.
Camryn
948
235
New name. Strong trend to female.
Casey
297
404
Declining.
Charlie
328
951
Old, mostly male name. New as female.
Dakota
150
226
Trends female.
Devin
90
903
Strong trend to male.
Devon
191
958
Strong trend to male.
Devyn
729
873
Uncommon name, trend about equal.
Dominique
685
532
Declining
Drew
198
968
Strong trend to male.
Dylan
24
605
Strong trend to male.
Emerson
584
442
Old male name. Strong new female trend.
Guadalupe
936
254
Strong trend to female.
Harley
509
372
Trends female.
Hayden
77
417
Old, popular male name. New as female.
Jaden
88
280
New since 90s. Trends male.
Jadyn
695
249
New since 90s. Trends female.
Jaiden
223
469
New since 90s. Trends male.
Jaidyn
941
600
New since 01. Mostly female.
Jamie
550
219
Declining, trends to female.
Jayden
54
224
New since 90s. Mostly male.
Jaylin
436
655
New since 90s.Trend about equal.
Jessie
446
570
Declining. Trend about equal.
Jordan
46
86
Slightly declining, slight trend to male.
Jordyn
929
188
New since 89. Mostly female.
Justice
443
536
Trend about equal.
Kasey
630
595
Declining. Trend about equal.
Kayden
255
627
New since 99. trends male.
Kendall
522
130
Strong trend female.
Kennedy
987
118
Strong trend female.
Logan
26
410
Strong trend male.
London
688
538
New since 90s.Trend about equal.
Micah
151
878
Strong trend male.
Morgan
335
33
Strong trend female.
Parker
119
711
Old, popular male name. New as female.
Payton
238
156
Increasing popularity. Trends about equal.
Peyton
138
131
Increasing popularity. Trends about equal.
Phoenix
478
895
New since 90s. Trends male.
Quinn
303
676
Trends male.
Reagan
684
136
New since 90s. Mostly female.
Reese
406
237
Old male name, trends female.
Riley
106
53
Popular name, slightly more female.
Rowan
439
765
New since the 90's. Most male.
Ryan
13
452
Mostly male.
Rylee
755
128
New since 94. Mostly female.
Sage
644
363
Declining as a male name.
Shannon
910
301
Both declining especially male.
Shea
971
767
Trends female.
Sidney
832
376
Both declining especially male.
Skylar
462
154
Trends female.
Skyler
241
315
Trends slightly male
Taylor
224
24
Strongly trends female.
Teagan
869
478
New since 99. Mostly female.
Tyler
16
764
Strongly trends male.


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