It seemed like everyone had the same names when we were growing up. There were always at least two or three kids in our classes who had the same names and even though they may have spelled it different, it made everything more complicated.
Nowadays, parents all claim that they want unique names. Let’s be real though, our parents thought the same thing. Trending names are common in every decade, the most popular choices just change.
Why do these names get popular? It might be because certain celebrities are popular at the time so it inspires more people. Let’s check out the 5 most popular names for girls and the 5 most popular names for boys in the 80s and see if we can figure out why they were everywhere.
So in the 80s there were A LOT of famous Michaels in the 80s. Of course there was Michael Jackson, George Michael, Brett Michaels, Michael Keaton, and Michael J. Fox. All of these combined might help skew new parents interest to the name.
Christopher seems to have been popular for decades now, but in the 80s it might have been influenced by a few stars. Chris Rock was getting pretty popular, Christopher Reeves’s Superman was huge, and maybe even Christopher Lloyd helped parents take notice of the name. Who can really know for sure.
One of the most popular movies in the 80s was Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, so it makes sense that Matthew would be a popular name thanks to the star Matthew Broderick.
A couple famous “Joshs” were around in the 80s. We had Josh Brolin in Goonies as well as Josh Saviano in The Wonder Years. Of course you can’t forget Josh Baskin, the character Tom Hanks played in the movie Big.
David Bowie was probably the most famous David in the 80s, followed by David Hasslehoff, David Cassidy and David Lee Roth.
Of course a lot of these names have biblical origins which might be the real source, but it’s a lot more fun to imagine a bunch of baby David Bowies running around!
But what about the girls’ names?
Which girls names were the most popular in the 80s?
Jessica is an interesting one because it has been popular for SO long. It’s possible that Sarah Jessica Parker influenced this huge surge, or maybe it was Jessica Lange. There was also a girl who was famous for falling into a well who the media dubbed “Baby Jessica”.
Jennifer may have been a popular name thanks to Jennifer Grey from Dirty Dancing, Jennifer Beals from Flashdance, or maybe Jennifer Connolly who starred in Labrynth.
The movie Can’t Buy Me Love starred a girl named Amanda Peterson. Another super popular Amanda would have been the character in Dynasty with that name.
Ashley used to be thought of as a boys name, but in the 80s the character Ashley Abbott on The Young and the Restless became super popular and kind of stole the name.
Sarah has always ranked as one of the most popular names. Apparently ever since they started recording these statistics back in 1880 the name Sarah has been on the list. There were a few famous Sarahs in the 80s though. There was Sara Anderson in Adventures in Babysitting, which while spelled different it is close. There was also (as mentioned before) Sarah Jessica Parker, and Sarah Ferguson, Dutchess of York.