Uncommon Girls Names That Aren't Too "Out-There"

Hello friends! I have another list for you that I think you'll like! Last year we talked about boys names that are uncommon but not too "out-there". This time it's the girls' turn! 

The criteria I had for putting together this list were:

1) Not in the United States top 200 in 2027 (the most recent data made available by the Social Security Administration)

3) Not a variant spelling of a name in the top 200

4) Relatively easy to say and spell (there are a few exceptions that I included anyway)

"one's own meadow"

Ainsley is a cute little name that fits the trend of girls names that end in "-lee", a la Hailey, Bailey, Kaylee, etc. There are a lot of names in this category, and some of them do get repetitive and sound a little contrived. However, there are a lot of "-lee" names with legitimate meaning and history, many of them originating as last names. Ainsley is one of those names. I particularly like the independent flair of the meaning of "one's own meadow". Ainsley makes a great alternative to the more popular "-lee" names like Emily (#12), Riley (#25), Lily (#33), Natalie (#35), Ellie (#44), Paisley (#45), Kinsley (#59), Hailey (#72), Everly (#82), and Kaylee (#84). 


Annika (pn. ANN-ik-uh) is a Swedish diminutive of Anna, making Annika a fun way to honor an Ann, Anna, or Hannah. Anika is the more common spelling at #599. Anika can be a Swedish diminutive of Ann, or it can be a Hausa name meaning "sweetness of face".With that spelling it could be pronounced like Annika, or it could be pronouced "a-NEE-ka". If you prefer the "ANN-ik-uh" pronunciation, I'd recommend spelling it with two ns. Nika is a fun nickname possibility, and it makes Annika a possible way to honor a Nicole.

"dweller on the plain"

Blair is a spunky, one syllable name with a no-frills unisex vibe. It's not popular at all for girls in the U.K. where it originated, though it is on the list for boys. Blair makes a cool alternative to Brooke (#191), Quinn (#76), or Claire (#49). One-syllable names like Blair also tend to have a lot of potential as middle names.

"vigor, liveliness"

Bria is a sweet name that packs a punch in just two syllables. It's similar to names like Briana and Brielle, but distinctive at the same time. Bria comes from the Latin word "brio", which means "vigor" or "liveliness". If you're like me and enjoy girls names that end in "o", you might want to consider Brio as well.


Brynn is another name that's short but complete, and full of energy! Bryn is the original Welsh spelling but it has been completely overshadowed by the two "n" spelling. Similar sounding Brenna is at #994.


Gemma is a charming little name that's familiar and easy, but still not something you hear everyday, at least not in the United States. Gemma is a classic Italian name, but it doesn't give off the same traditional vibes as the English (from German) classic Emma. It was popular in the U.K. in the 1980's, but it's only been in the U.S. top 1000 for about ten years. It's a nice alternative to the "Em" names that are very popular at the moment (think Emma, Emily, Emilia) and the "Jen" names that were so popular in previous decades (Jennifer, Jenna). My favorite thing about Gemma is the potential nickname Gem. If you're a braver namer, you might consider using Gem on it's own as a first name or as short and sweet middle.


Maeve is a stunning name with Irish heritage. It's spelling is the main drawback, in my opinion, but's bold, spunky sound and strong Irish ties could be enough to make up for the complexity. Maeve has ties to mythology, Shakespeare (as Queen Mab from a Midsummer Night's Dream), and some modern media such as the T.V. shows Criminal Minds and Westworld

Scottish diminutive of Margaret

The meaning "pearl" adds an extra shine to this name. Maisie is simple, cute, and unexpected! It's a great way to honor a Margaret in the family, or maybe even a Mae, Mary, Macy, or Mason. Maisy is another acceptable spelling of this name. 

French from Latin
#605 in 2017

Remy can be spelled with an 'i' at the end, or a 'y', with the Remi spelling being the one that's currently most popular for girls at #249. Remy is a unisex name, and though it is complete on it's own, it can also be used as a short form of names like Remington. I happen to like it as a nickname for Remember.

#309 in 2017

Sage is an lovely little one syllable name that certainly feels familiar, but has never really been popular. Sage is a nature name, like Lily or Violet, but not overly frilly. It's also a unisex name, though slightly more popular for girls.

#220 in 2017

Sloane is a stylish surname-turned-first name that's used almost exclusively for girls these days. If you're looking for a girls name that's not too girly and just sounds super cool, Sloane is a great choice! The Sloan spelling, without the final 'e' is also in the top 1000 now, at #611.

diminutive of the Greek name Theresa
"to harvest"

Tessa began as a short for of Theresa, but these days it's just as likely to stand alone. It would make a great option for someone wanting to honor a Theresa or a Terry (or a Teri/Terri/Terrie). Tessa has a respectable balance of sweet and serious. It's perfect on a little girl, a career woman, or a mom and a grandma. Even though it's a nickname itself, Tessa can be shortened to the shorter-and-sweeter Tess.

"of God"
#269 in 2017

Theo and its longer forms are getting plenty of attention for boys, why not consider Thea for a girl? While Theo is more likely to be short for Theodore than to stand on its own, Theodora is not even in the top 1000. There are some other intriguing possibilities that Thea can be short for such as Anthea, Althea, Dorothea, or even Theodosia.  While these more elaborate names are fun and beautiful in their own right, Thea is simple, sweet and complete all on her own!

There we have it! A lovely list of names for girls that are uncommon, but not too "out-there". Which name on this list is your favorite? Is there one you would consider using? Which names would you add to this list?

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