50 Black Baby Names and Meanings for Girls

Learn the meaning and origin behind popular names for Black baby girls.

baby girl playing in tub with rubber ducks

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Black culture is comprised of varying elements such as shared beliefs, music, foods, clothing, and countless other things that express what it is like to navigate life as a Black person. This growing list also includes names. Black names are distinctive and can be interpreted with several different meanings. With a history of names being taken away during slavery, Black people placed an emphasis on given names as a way to pass down culture and ensure descendants were treated with respect. 

From African and Arabic to Latin and Germanic origins, Black names are filled with deep meaning, and many also stem from historic roots. Names like Destiny and Imani come from a strong belief in fate and faith, while a name like Azha has a more astrological interpretation. Before settling on a name, take a look at the list below to gain some insight into a few options for your baby. 


  • Origin: Indian, Arabic
  • Meaning: Sunrise, star
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Ahzha 
  • Peak Popularity: Azha is a rare name that has not been listed in the top 1000 names.


  • Origin: Celtic, Irish
  • Meaning: Awakening, precious
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Alanna, Alaina
  • Famous Namesakes: Professional surfer Alana Blanchard
  • Peak Popularity: Alana has risen slightly in popularity, moving up from a rank of 232 in 2019 to 206 in 2020.


  • Origin: Greek, Latin
  • Meaning: Helper, defender of man
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Alexya, Alexxia
  • Peak Popularity: Alexia has consistently remained in the top 1000 baby names over the last 20 years, ranking most recently at 734 in 2020.


  • Origin: Arabic
  • Meaning: Heavens, exalted
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Alia, Aaliya
  • Famous Namesakes: Singer Aaliyah Haughton
  • Peak Popularity: Staying within the top 1000 names since 2001, Aaliyah ranked at 65 as of 2020.

Fun Fact: Singer Aaliyah has been credited with helping redefine R&B and pop, and was lovingly known as the Princess of R&B.


  • Origin: Latin, Germanic, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Life, Voice
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Avah, Aiva
  • Famous Namesakes
  • Peak Popularity: Ava is an extremely popular name, ranking at 3 in the top 1000 baby names from 2016 to 2020.


  • Origin: Old English
  • Meaning: Gentle stream
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Brook
  • Famous Namesakes: Brooke Alexander, actress, former Miss Hawaii World and former Miss World America
  • Peak Popularity: The name Brooke has significantly declined in popularity, falling from a rank of 72 in 2010 to 237 in 2020.


  • Origin: American, Greek
  • Meaning: Grace
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Cherice, Cherese, Sherise
  • Peak Popularity: Charice is not in the most popular baby name rankings.


  • Origin: Old English
  • Meaning: Port for chalk
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Chelsey
  • Famous Namesakes: American comedian and writer Chelsea Peretti, Actress and singer Chelsea Tavares
  • Peak Popularity: Chelsea was most popular in the early 1990s. This name most recently ranked at 646 in 2020.


  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Blooming
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Khloe
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress and Grammy-nominated singer Chloe Bailey
  • Peak Popularity: While most popular in 2009 and 2010 at a ranking of 9, Chloe’s popularity slightly fell to 27 in 2020. 


  • Origin: Latin, American
  • Meaning: Fate, Fortune
  • Famous Namesakes: American track and field athlete Destiny Carter
  • Peak Popularity: Destiny’s popularity has swiftly fallen in the last 10 years, going from a rank of 71 in 2010 to 351 in 2020.


  • Origin: English, Irish
  • Meaning: Poet
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Devin 
  • Peak Popularity: Devyn was last ranked in the top 1000 baby names in 2013 at 972.


  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Divine
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Dion, Deion, Dione
  • Famous Namesakes: American singer and actress Dionne Warwick 
  • Peak Popularity: Dionne has not ranked in the top 1000 baby names within the last 30 years.


  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Goddess of discord
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Eris
  • Peak Popularity: This is a unique name is not found in the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Aura, nature
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Essense
  • Peak Popularity: Essence dropped out of the top 1000 baby names in 2008 at a ranking of 978.

Fun Fact: Essence is the name of a well-known magazine written for and catering to African American women. The company also produces Essence Festival, an annual gathering of musical performances, seminars, and celebrations.


  • Origin: Latin, English
  • Meaning: Happiness, good fortune
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Felicitey, Felicitee
  • Peak Popularity: As of 2020, Felicity is ranked at 386.


  • Origin: Italian, Latin
  • Meaning: Precious stone
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Jemma, Gema
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Gemma Chan
  • Peak Popularity: Breaking the top 1000 baby names in 2008 at 887, Gemma’s popularity has risen to a rank of 207 in 2020.


  • Origin: Arabic, Swahili
  • Meaning: Belief, faith
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Emoniey
  • Famous Namesakes: Imani Coppola, American singer-songwriter and violinist
  • Peak Popularity: The name Imani has ranked consistently in the top 1000 baby names, most recently sitting at 523 in 2020.


  • Origin: Hebrew, African
  • Meaning: God is gracious
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Ayanna
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Iyana Halley
  • Peak Popularity: Iyana was last ranked in the top 1000 baby names at 969 in 2007.


  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Wise, goodness
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Jayda
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress and musician Jada Pinkett-Smith
  • Peak Popularity: Peaking in the early 2000s, Jada’s popularity fell to 546 in 2020.


  • Origin: Arabic, English
  • Meaning: God’s promise
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Jalissa
  • Peak Popularity: Jalisa has not been in the top 1000 baby names in the last 20 years.


  • Origin: Indian, Hindi
  • Meaning: Victorious, victory
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Jaai, Jaia
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Jaya Prada
  • Peak Popularity: Jaya is a rare name and does not rank in the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: Hebrew, Arabic
  • Meaning: Crown of laurels
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Kalah
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Kayla Maisonet
  • Peak Popularity: Kayla has slightly fallen in popularity, sliding from 183 in 2019 to 217 in 2020, but still consistently remains in the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: English, Welsh
  • Meaning: Knowledge
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Kendrah, Kendrea
  • Famous Namesakes: Model and social media personality Kendra Bailey
  • Peak Popularity: Kendra has been a popular name for over 30 years and most recently ranked at 551 in 2020.


  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Pride, fierce
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Kenedi, Kenedy
  • Peak Popularity: Ranking at 72 in 2020, Kennedy is an increasingly popular name, rising from a rank of 111 in 2010.


  • Origin: African
  • Meaning: Animal horn
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Keneya, Keneia Kennya
  • Famous Namesakes: American actress, model and producer Kenya Moor
  • Peak Popularity: Kenya last saw popularity in 2017 at a rank of 961.


  • Origin: Italian, Irish
  • Meaning: Kind, Bright
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Chiara
  • Famous Namesakes: WNBA player Kiara Leslie, CoverGirl model Kiara Kabukuru
  • Peak Popularity: Kiara’s popularity currently ranks 308 out of the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: French
  • Meaning: To climb
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Lyana, Lianna
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Liana Liberato
  • Peak Popularity: The name Liana last ranked at 461 in 2020.


  • Origin: Latin, Roman
  • Meaning: Moon
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Lunna, Lunah
  • Peak Popularity: Luna is quickly becoming an extremely popular name, rising from a ranking of 342 in 2010 to 14 in 2020.


  • Origin: American
  • Meaning: Happy one
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Makena, Mckenna
  • Peak Popularity: Makenna has remained common over the last 20 years but has declined in popularity, most recently ranking at 402 in 2020.


  • Origin: Welsh, Greek
  • Meaning: Pearl
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Meghan, Meagan
  • Famous Namesakes: Rapper Megan ‘Megan Thee Stallion’ Jovon Ruth Pete
  • Peak Popularity: Most popular in the 1990s and early 2000s, Megan has fallen to a ranking of 638 as of 2020.


  • Origin: Hebrew, Egyptian
  • Meaning: Beloved, queen
  • Famous Namesakes: Prime Minister Mia Mottley, Former professional soccer player and Olympic gold medalist Mia Hamm
  • Peak Popularity: Mia’s popularity has remained consistent for decades. Most recently, its popularity has soared, with the name remaining in the top 10 most popular baby names for the last 10 years.


  • Origin: Russian, Slavic
  • Meaning: Hope, delicate
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Nadya, Nadja
  • Famous Namesakes: Singer-songwriter and actress Nadia Turner
  • Peak Popularity: The name Nadia most recently ranked at 468 in 2020.


  • Origin: African
  • Meaning: Successful, queen, gift
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Nahla
  • Famous Namesakes: Nala Wayans, fashion model and daughter of actor Keenen Ivory Wayans
  • Peak Popularity: Nala made its first appearance on the top 1000 baby names list in 2014 at 992 and has risen to a rank of 693 as of 2020.


  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Defiant, strong 
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Nashe, Nasheya
  • Peak Popularity: Nashea is a unique name that is not listed in the top 1000 baby names for girls.


  • Origin: Gaelic, Swahilian
  • Meaning: Lustrous, bright, brilliant
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Neya, Niea
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Nia Long, Olympia athlete Nia Ali
  • Peak Popularity: The popularity of the name Nia has remained around the same for the past 10 years. In 2020, it ranked at 494.


  • Origin: Greek, French
  • Meaning: Victory of the people
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Nichole
  • Famous Namesakes: Comedian Nicole Byer, Nicole Scherzinger
  • Peak Popularity: Peaking at a rank of 7 in the early 1980s, this name has since remained popular but fallen to a rank of 266.


  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Belief
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Nore
  • Peak Popularity: Nori is a distinctive name and has not yet made the list of top 1000 names for baby girls.

Fun Fact: In Japan, the name Nori is primarily gender-neutral. 


  • Origin: Arabic
  • Meaning: Grateful, thankful
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Shakera, Shakura
  • Famous Namesakes: Colombian singer Shakira
  • Peak Popularity: Shakira has not made the top 1000 baby names since 2006 when it had a rank of 780. 


  • Origin: Swahili, Sanskrit
  • Meaning: Wondrous, Marvel
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Shanee, Shaney, Shanie
  • Peak Popularity: Shani is a rare name that has not yet been listed in the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Wise
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Shanon, Shannen
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress and model Shannon Elizabeth 
  • Peak Popularity: Shannon last appeared in the top 1000 baby girl names in 2013 at 917.


  • Origin: Old French, Hindi
  • Meaning: Peaceful, stone
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Shante
  • Peak Popularity: This name has not ranked in the top 1000 baby names for girls.


  • Origin: Gaelic, Hebrew, Irish
  • Meaning: Admirable, gift
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Shay Mitchell
  • Peak Popularity: Shay first entered the top 1000 baby names list in 2020 at a ranking of 928.


  • Origin: French, Italian
  • Meaning: Hearkening, to be heard
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Seymone
  • Famous Namesakes: Gymnast and gold medalist Simone Biles
  • Peak Popularity: After a slight increase in popularity in 2019 at 713, the name Simone has slid back down to a ranking of 875.


  • Origin: Italian, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Morning dew
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Thalia, Taliyah
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress Talia Balsam
  • Peak Popularity: As of 2020, Talia ranks at 337 out of the top 1000 baby names.


  • Origin: Anglo-French
  • Meaning: Tailer
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Tayler, Taylour
  • Famous Namesakes: Singer Taylor Swift, Actress Taylor Cole
  • Peak Popularity: Taylor has remained a consistently popular name over time, with a peak in the 1990s. However, its popularity has declined, and the name most recently ranked at 161.


  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Graceful, unique
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Teyona
  • Famous Namesakes: Singer-songwriter Teyana Taylor
  • Peak Popularity: Teyana is not in the top 1000 baby names list.


  • Origin: Greek, Spanish
  • Meaning: Goddess, Joy
  • Famous Namesakes: American actress Tia Mowry, Voice actress Tia Ballard
  • Peak Popularity: Tia was last ranked in the top 1000 baby names in 2012 at 962.


  • Origin: Russian, Slavic
  • Meaning: Princess
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Teona
  • Famous Namesakes: American dancer Tiana Brown
  • Peak Popularity: Tiana has been a consistently popular name and as of 2020 ranks at 694. 

Fun Fact: The first black Disney princess was Princess Tiana of The Princess and the Frog.


  • Origin: Old English
  • Meaning: Tiler
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Tailer
  • Famous Namesakes: Rapper Tyler, The Creator, Actor Tyler James Williams
  • Peak Popularity: Tyler last ranked in the top 1000 names for baby girls in 2007 at 877.

Fun Fact: Tyler is gender-neutral and is also commonly used as a surname. 


  • Origin: Swahili
  • Meaning: Beautiful
  • Alternative Spellings & Variations: Zhuri
  • Famous Namesakes: Actress, reporter, and producer Zuri Hall
  • Peak Popularity: Zuri is a name to watch. Its popularity has soared over the past 10 years, flying from 982 in 2010 to 236 in 2020.
2 Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Hunter, M. A., & Robinson, Z. F. The sociology of urban Black AmericaAnnual Review of Sociology. 2016;42(1):385-405

  2. Social Security Administration. Popular Baby Names.