Go with the flow: Parents are choosing ‘liquid names’ for their babies

Posted in Baby Names.

If you haven’t heard of ‘liquid names’ before, you’re in the same boat as we were (up until a little while ago!) This pretty, fluid phenomenon in baby naming has its roots in linguistic patterns!

Names with flow

Laura Wattenberg wrote about this phenomenon a few years ago, and it seems as though she predicted a possible future movement in baby name trends.

So what defines a so-called ‘liquid names’? Laura has crafted some guidelines to help you sort the liquid from the not. Liquid baby names have:

  • Three or more syllables.
  • They should have fewer consonant sounds than vowel sounds. The vowel sounds “set the mood” Laura says.
  • Specific consonants are favoured – L, R  “belong to the linguistic category called ‘liquid consonants‘,” Laura explained. “I also allowed N, Y and H, since they can be made with an open mouth (unlike M or SH), without the involvement of lips or teeth (unlike F or S), and without hard throat sounds (unlike G or KH).”

Basically, liquid names roll off the tongue in an elongated and gentle way, without any ‘harder’ sounds to stop the flow. It’s usually girls’ names that have this fluid feel, but we found a handful of ace boys’ names that fit the liquid bill, too. 

Read more about baby names:

30 ways to ‘liquid name’ your baby

Here are just a few pretty examples of this naming trend you might fancy for your brand new little person:

Girls’ names:

  1. Leona
  2. Elena
  3. Aaliyah
  4. Eleanor
  5. Ariana
  6. Nuala
  7. Liliana
  8. Hilary
  9. Aria
  10. Elena
  11. Liria
  12. Orelie
  13. Aurora
  14. Alana
  15. Ariel
  16. Lillian
  17. Liana
  18. Lilyana
  19. Anaya

Boys’ names:

  1. Helio
  2. Elior
  3. Elian
  4. Orion
  5. Halian
  6. Ellery
  7. Halloran
  8. Helier
  9. Ennio
  10. Halian
  11. Lionel

Get the picture? Heavy on the vowels, light on the soft consonants – and three or more syllables! Happy baby naming!


Get more babyology straight to your inbox