Old Hollywood-inspired baby names may be rising in popularity: ‘Nostalgic trend’


A recent baby names report shows that expecting parents may be returning to the Golden Age of Hollywood as they research catchy monikers for their little one.

Robin Hilmantel, senior director of editorial strategy & growth at BabyCenter, a California-based parenting resource, shared her thoughts on the return of these “vintage-inspired” names.

“Each year we notice shifts in popularity of baby names based on the influence of pop culture,” Hilmantel shared with Fox News Digital.

“Generally, the names we see with the biggest upswings in popularity embody a variety of positive traits relating to likability, notability and other qualities that parents would like associated with their children,” she said.

Last year, BabyCenter reported on the “Hottest name trends of 2022.”

The organization’s report found the beginnings of the Golden Age-era hitting the scene.

“So far this year, we’re seeing a similar nostalgic trend in the rise of ‘Old Hollywood’ names that are proving to be popular among Millennial and Gen Z parents,” Hilmantel commented.


James is an English name with Hebrew roots meaning “one who takes by the heel.” While the name has consistently been at the top of most popular baby names, according to BabyCenter, there seems to be a spike once again.

The name currently sits at #6 in popularity for boy’s name, rising two spots since last year.

Dean has a Latin origin while the name means “presiding official.” BabyCenter has already seen an increase, as the name has risen 4 spots and currently holds the place of #213 on the list of most popular boy names.


Marilyn is a Hebrew name that means “bitter.” The rise in popularity with this name may haver come from the success of the recent Marilyn Monroe biopic released in 2022, BabyCenter shared. The name is continuously rising and currently holds the #595 spot for most popular girl names.


Monroe is a Scottish and Gaelic name that means “mouth of the River Roe,” according to thebump.com. In the same way that the name Marilyn is making a comeback, the starlet’s last name Monroe is also gaining in popularity. 

BabyCenter’s research shows the name is increasing spots, and currently sits at the #802 spot for most popular girl names.


Vivian has Latin origins and means “full of life.” BabyCenter looks to Hollywood icon, Vivien Leigh of “Gone With the Wind”, as the source behind the rise in popularity. The name holds the #184 in most popular girl names.


Grace is of Latin origin, meaning “goodness” and “generosity.” Another noteworthy Hollywood starlet is the Princess of Monaco Grace Kelly – who may be the inspiration behind the continuous rise in popularity for the past three years, BabyCenter reported.

The name sits at the #15 spot for most popular girl names and has risen 26 spots since last year.


Kelly is a Teutonic name that means “farm by the spring” and is popular angst both girls and boys. The namesake is well known throughout Old Hollywood, with stars and characters such as “Grace Kelly, Gene Kelly, Nancy Kelly and Jack Kelly” serving as inspiration, BabyCenter noted. 

For boys, the name has risen 277 spots and sits at #1325 in popularity, while the girl version of the name has spiked 355 spots and sits at #1421 in popularity.


Gloria has Latin origins and means “glory.” BabyCenter has seen this name steadily rise in popularity over the last several years.

“Like Grace, given the name’s spiritual and heavenly connotations, it’s illuminating to note that Gloria Swanson’s first name is popular again today,” the online media company stated.

The name has risen 47 spots and hold the place of #795 on the list of most popular girl names.


Rita stems from Latin origins and is a form of the name Margarita or Margaret, which means “child of light.”

The name has seen a massive increase since 2018, BabyCenter noted. It currently sits at #595 and has increased 283 spots.


Judith is a Hebrew name that means “admired.” The common nickname for Judith is Judy, as in Hollywood star Judy Garland. BabyCenter has noticed a rise in popularity since 2021. 

The name has risen 223 spots and sits #795 on the list for most popular girl names.

The names Sophia and Ava should also be noted, according to BabyCenter.

While there has not been a significant increase in popularity, BabyCenter recognizes the steadiness of the names’ rankings “as top names for girls, like the legacies of Sophia Loren and Ava Gardner.”