Like all fads, the popularity of certain baby names changes. What was all the rage during your parents' generation will not necessarily be popular today. In 1990, Jessica topped the list as the most popular female baby name. In 2021, the name Jessica dropped in popularity to #481.
Social media and pop culture sometimes play a role in naming trends. For example, the name Karen dropped by 263 spots in popularity in 2021, after Karen became a slang word synonymous with entitled white women captured on video exploiting their privilege under the guise of victimhood. Also on the downswing, names ending in "yn"—Jaxtyn, Korbyn, Carolyn, and Lauryn are just some examples of names that dropped in popularity in 2021. Often, parents are eschewing less popular names.
Stacker ranked the top 50 baby names that dropped in popularity in 2021, using data from the Social Security Administration. By subtracting the name's 2020 rank from its 2021 rank, Stacker determined the decrease in each name's popularity (rank indicates where the name fell on the list of popular baby names). In the event of a tie, Stacker used the 2021 rank.
Many of the names that decreased in popularity are considered gender-neutral, though the Social Security Administration considers sex and gender binary variables. Male and female designations were determined using the gender selected on Social Security card applications.
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