MOST POPULAR FRENCH BABY NAMES
Alexandre is the French variation of the ever-popular name Alexander. This strong name choice means ‘defending men.’
50 Fabulous French Baby Names for Your Bebe
What’s not to adore about France? It’s a country that’s set the trend on every front, from fashion to food to fine art and beyond. And in addition to the fabulous culture France has given us, it’s also a font of inspiration in the baby name department. French names for girls and boys are impossibly chic and often have thoughtful meanings to match.
Whether you’re of French descent or are simply a francophile through-and-through, a French baby name won’t disappoint. No matter your reasons for seeking out a French name for your bebe, peruse our list of French names for girls and boys—as well as French baby names that work for both genders—and then let us know your favorites in the comments section below!
French Baby Names for Girls
Amelie: A French girls’ name meaning “industrious,” it’s a strong pick for a baby girl that feels reminiscent of the charming movie by the same name from 2001.
Arlette: A wildy underused French girls’ name here in the States, this unique French girl name means “Lion of God,” and lends itself to cute nicknames Arly or Lettie.
Bellamy: This precious girls’ name means “fine friend,” a sweet legacy to impart on a daughter. You can call her Bella for short.
Brielle: The shortened version of Gabrielle has picked up speed in recent years. It’s a unique take on a familiar-sounding girl name meaning “God is my strength.”
Celine: Giving her the moniker of a world-famous vocal powerhouse cannot be a bad thing. Celine is a popular French baby name with Latin origins meaning “sky” or “heavens.”
Charlotte: An international top pick with major US and UK appeal, the French female diminutive of Charles—“free man”—is beloved in its home country as well.
Colette: Easy to pronounce and spell, but still quintessentially French, this adorable French girls’ name is a version of Nicholas from the Middle Ages. Its meaning is “necklace” or “victorious.” You can also call her Coco, which would be très chic.
Elise: A bit more common to American ears, this popular French baby name for girls means “pledged to God.”
Elodie: Not as popular as Eloise (also French), but just as light and flowy, this pretty pick translates to “foreign riches.”
Emmeline: Like Pankhurst, the British pioneer of women’s rights. Or, just because it sounds beautiful and has the noble meaning (“work”).
Esme: The short-and-sweet French girls’ name means “esteemed, beloved; emerald” in a modern interpretation. The ancient connotation from the Old French verb esmer translates this name as “to esteem, to love.”
Estelle: An old-fashioned name having a bit of a revival, Estelle is a lovely French baby girl name that means “star.”
Fleur: At a time when flower and nature names reign supreme, consider the French word for “flower” as you grow your little garden of children.
Genevieve: It’s a form of the ancient Genoveva, with family meanings “wife, woman.”
Jolie: This jovial sounding French baby name for girls isn’t widely used in France, but is a unique French name nonetheless. It literally translates to “pretty.”
Josephine: A sweet French name with Greek and Hebrew roots that means “will grow.” The icing on the cake (or should we say the butter on the baguette?), it has two precious nicknames built in: Josie or Fifi.
Juliette: It’s hard to ignore the Romeo and… connotations, making this love-oriented name a beautiful pick for a baby girl. In French, Juliette means “young” and “downy,” which is soft and sweet for Baby Girl.
Liana: The name of a tropical vine and also a shortened version of more common picks Elliana and Juliana, this is a pretty French baby name for your little one.
Lucille: In honor of the great American comedienne Lucille Ball, or just because this lovely, roll-off-the-tongue French baby name for girls has the bright and hopeful meaning (“light”).
Ottilie: Add this one to the cool-girl name list running through your mind. This unique French name has a “Natalie” feel but stands out from a crowd. Ottilie means “prosperous in battle,” adding to its fierce flair.
Rosalie: This French name for girls means “beautiful rose” and sounds just as lovely as its meaning. This classic French nature name is a beautiful pick for a modern baby girl.
Sylvie: “From the forest” to your home… an enchanted-feeling French baby name with a fresh and spritely feel.
French Baby Names for Boys
Alain: The French version of Alan, with Celtic roots and a trifold meaning: harmony, stone, noble. Some connotations of Alain also include the meaning “handsome.”
Antoine: A bold French boys’ name meaning “highly praiseworthy.” You can impart the same moniker on a baby girl by altering the ending to Antoinette.
Beau: Oft-used in the Southern US, Beau is a unique French boys’ name meaning “handsome.”
Basile: A noble name for boys meaning “royal, kingly,” it’ll be perfect for your petit prince!
Benoit: In French it means “blessed;” derived from the Latin another translation is the “one who says the good.” Either way, it’s a feel-good name that isn’t common for baby boys, and lends easily to nicknames Ben or Benny.
Gabin: A sidestep from the more popular Gavin, the common French version is a place name borrowed from the Italian “of Gabii”—a city in central Italy. It is currently in the top 20 names for boys in France.
Gaetan: Another place name for boys, this less-popular pick means “of Gaeta”—another Italian city—and is a lovely choice if you’re looking for a more unique French baby name for boys.
Guy: Old-fashioned names are making a comeback, and this cutie that was popular in the late 1880s could be staged for a resurgence. It’s a French baby boy name meaning “leader” or “guide.”
Harvey: From the French meaning “battle-worthy,” it’s more popular at home than it is here in the States, but that could be reason enough to consider it for your bébé boy.
Julien: A popular French baby name for boys, Julien is believed to be derived from the Greek for “downy bearded” or “soft haired.”
Laurent: A French boys’ name from the Roman surname Laurentius, with Old Greek influences giving it the meaning “bright and shining one.” Fashion-minded parents can’t ignore the nod to Yves St. Laurent, which only makes it even more of a chic choice for a baby boy.
Lazare: A rare name that’s recently been inching its way up the French name charts, this one is trés chic. The direct translation is “God is my helper,” and the name also appears in the French train station Gare Saint-Lazare, giving it possible place name cred as well.
Lucien: Meaning “light,” it’s a centuries-old French baby name that might take family and friends some getting used to in the pronunciation department, but is well worth it.
Marceau: In lieu of a classic Marc, consider the elegant French riff on the classic name that translates to “little warrior.”
Mathis: A cool French baby name if you’re naming your baby after a Matthew in the family, this moniker for boys means “Gift of God.”
Maxim: This Latin-derived French boys’ name means “greatest,” and is a nice alternative to the more common Maxwell or Max.
Olivier: If you’re a fan of Oliver, consider the popular French take which adds some flair with its extra syllable. Olivier means “olive tree” and sounds a bit more dramatic than the English version.
Percival: Your petit prince would be well served with a storied French baby name that shows up frequently in history and literature, but not as often on the kindergarten attendance sheet. Percival means “one who pierces the valley,” and lends easily to many refined nickname options (Percy, Civi, and Val, to name a few).
Rainier: A very cool French baby name for boys meaning “strong counselor.” He’ll absolutely be the only one on the playground with this unique name.
Thierry: It means “the power is mighty” or “the ruler of the people,” making this French boys’ name just as bold in meaning as it is in sound.
Valentin: A darling pick for a baby boy this French name translates to “strong” and “healthy.” It’s also reminiscent of the famed St. Valentine. making it an irresistibly love-filled name for your little one.
Gender Neutral French Baby Names
Andre: The French form of Andrew is growing in popularity for boys and girls. Despite translating to “masculine and manly,” it also has the meanings “warrior” and “brave” which applies to both genders.
Blaise: This beautiful French baby name sounds like the English word “blaze,” giving it a fiery feel for a boy or girl. The actual meaning isn’t too exciting—“to lisp, stutter”—but that doesn’t mean it’s not the perfect French name for your baby.
Noé: The French version of Noah (“rest, repose”) offers both familiarity and style.
Paris: A trendy place name that pays homage to France’s capital, Paris is a beautiful and increasingly popular pick for baby boys and girls.
Remi: Meaning “oarsman” or “remedy,” this French baby name has a harmonious quality for team-players-to-be. It’s used as a unisex name in France and abroad.
Simone: A classic French baby name for boys and girls, the French version of Simon means “harkening” and has a beautiful sound to match its cheerful meaning.
Soleil: French for “sun,” this beaming baby name would be well-suited for a shining little blessing of either gender. Nature names are still on the rise, and the more unique the better—so definitely don’t discount this glowing choice.
Final Thoughts on French Baby Names
For francophiles and non-francophiles alike, there are seemingly infinite beautiful French baby names for girls and boys. However, you have plenty of options outside France’s borders. Take a look at all of of our favorite baby names, including:
- Japanese Baby Names
- Biblical Baby Names
- Spanish Baby Names
- Italian Baby Names
- British Baby Names
- Irish Baby Names
- Southern Baby Names
Picking a parfait baby name is one of the most important things to do before your bebe’s arrival. But, just as crucial: Picking out the perfect baby bed. Find out what makes SNOO Smart Sleeper the safest, smartest baby bassinet. and learn more about how SNOO adds hours of sleep for babies—and their tired parents—every night!
About Jenny Studenroth Gerson
Jenny Studenroth Gerson is an Atlanta-based lifestyle journalist and novelist (Let Me Let You Go, 2020). Her work can be seen in publications including HuffPost, Cosmo, and WSJ, among many others. Jenny has researched thousands of baby names, combed through hundreds of nursery designs, and curated dozens of baby shower guides, making her absolutely the mom—and writer—you want to talk to when planning for Baby. When not meeting deadlines, she is chasing toddlers or chugging coffee—or both! Find her on Instagram @ourlifeinrosegold for mom hacks and more.
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.
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If you are looking for a baby name that has a certain je ne sais quoi about it, then how about choosing a French name for your little one?
There are loads of gorgeous French names to choose from, so you are sure to find plenty of name inspiration from across the Channel. Here are the most popular French baby names for girls and boys.
Top French Names for Girls
Chloé is an ever-popular choice for parents looking for French girl names. This pretty name means ‘young green shoot.’
Salomé features in the top 100 French baby girl names for 2019, and means ‘peace.’
Léa is a top 10 French baby name, and the equivalent of the English name Leah, meaning ‘weary.’
This French name is a diminutive of Marie and means ‘bitter.’
This feminine-sounding name of French origin, and comes from the Latin for ‘little Julia.’
Camille means ‘young ceremonial servant’ and is a consistently popular name choice for babies in France, and can be used for either girls or boys.
Zoé is a classic name that never seems to lose its popularity. This top 20 French baby girl name currently ranks at number 17 in France and means ‘life.’
The name Adele may be best associated with the chart-topping singer, but in France Adèle is a popular baby name meaning ‘noble.’
Agathe features in the top 20 most popular French girl’s names. Agathe is a variation of Agatha and means ‘good woman.’
Jeanne is a classic French name meaning ‘God is gracious.’
This pretty name comes from the South of France, and is a pet version of the name Liliane. Lilou means ‘lily.’
Mathilde is a feminine name with a softer sound than the English equivalent, Matilda. Mathilde may be a soft-sounding name but it has a powerful meaning of ‘battle-mighty.’
Anaïs is one of the most popular French baby girl names of all time and means ‘graceful.’
Léonie is pretty French name which means ‘lion.’ The name is ranked as the 29 th most popular French baby girl’s name for 2019.
Elise became popular as the French version of the name Elizabeth. The name Elise means ‘pledged to God’ or ‘oath of God.’
Romane meaning ‘a Roman’ is a feminine version of the boy’s name Roman.
Elodie is a melodic-sounding girl’s name which means ‘foreign riches.’
If you are looking for a flower name for your baby girl, then Margaux is a classic choice meaning ‘daisy.’
This sophisticated girl’s name means ‘mild’ and ‘merciful’ and features in the French top 50 baby girl’s names.
This unique French name means ‘cowled monk’ and is ideal for parents looking for a one-of-a-kind baby name.
Théa is enjoying increased popularity in France right now and is ranked at number 57 in the charts. Théa means ‘gift of God.’
Maëlys is an unusual-sounding name of Breton-origin and means ‘princess’ and ‘chief.’
Apolline is the French feminine form of the name Apollo, Greek god of the sun and light. This cool-sounding name has been rising through the charts in France and now features in the top 100 French baby girl names.
Victoire adds a unique twist on the classic name Victoria and means ‘victory.’
If you are looking for distinctive French names for girls Héloïse fits the bill perfectly. This strong name has the equally strong meaning of ‘famous warrior.’
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Top French Names for Boys
The cool-sounding baby boy name Jules remains popular in France and means ‘youthful.’
Gabriel occupies the top spot for 2019 as the most popular baby boy name. Gabriel means ‘God is my strength.’
If you are looking for a regal baby boy name, how about Maël? Maël means ‘prince’ and ‘chief.’
Raphaël is a classic boy’s name meaning ‘God has healed.’
This masculine version of the name Emily means ‘friendly.’
Léon is an ever-popular name choice for baby boys and means ‘lion man.’
Sacha is a strong-sounding name for a baby boy which means ‘defending warrior.’
Louis is one of the most popular French baby names used in the UK and means ‘renowned warrior.’
Yanis is a popular French name for boys and means ‘gift of God.’
If you are looking for an unusual French boy’s name Naël is an excellent choice. Naël means ‘successful,’ ‘generous,’ and ‘blessed.’
Léo is a popular name France, and currently occupies the number two spot. Léo means ‘lion.’
Théo occupies a place in the top 25 French baby boy names for 2019 and means ‘divine gift.’
This French take on the name Noah means ‘rest.’
Mathis is a hugely popular baby name in France and is pronounced as ‘mat-tees.’ Mathis means ‘gift of God.’
Antoine is a classic name that enjoys continued popularity. Antoine has the meaning ‘priceless one.’
Variations of the name Max are always a popular choice, and the French boy’s name Maxime is no exception. Maxime means ‘the greatest.’
Clément is an attractive name for a baby boy and means ‘mild and merciful.’
Valentin is a romantic-sounding name which means ‘strength and health.’
If you think that Malo sounds familiar, it is because it originates from the popular holiday destination in Brittany, St Malo. St Malo was named after the saint that founded the town in the sixth century.
The name Marceau is a French variant of the name Marcel and means ‘little warrior.’
Baptiste is a name that has always enjoyed huge popularity in France and means ‘baptist.’
Mathéo is a French version of the popular name Matthew. Mathéo means ‘gift of God.’
Alexandre is the French variation of the ever-popular name Alexander. This strong name choice means ‘defending men.’
Marin meaning ‘of the sea’ is a unique choice of baby boy name.
Basile adds a French twist to the name Basil and features in France’s top 100 baby boy names. Basile means ‘regal.’