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20 rainbow baby names that have a sentimental meaning

Hope is a powerful word that brings many emotions to mind, particularly for parents who have experienced the loss of a child. Hope becomes the one ray of light to hold onto while grieving such a tremendous loss. While a child counts as his or her own irreplaceable, unique little gift, parents might feel a sense of renewed hope as they anticipate the arrival of another baby after a period of such sadness. This is where we get the term, “rainbow baby,” because this little one symbolizes a rainbow that appears after a dark, cloudy storm. This child conveys a message of “keep on keeping on.” Naturally, you might want to pick a name that carries a special meaning and a message of hope, so we bring to you a list of rainbow baby names for both boys and girls along with some unisex options.

Baby girl sitting on chalk drawing of a rainbow
Tatevosian Viana / Shutterstock

8 rainbow baby names for girls

Check our list of rainbow baby names for girls. Each selection has a special meaning that signifies hope, good fortune, and new life. Plus, they come from a variety of linguistic and cultural backgrounds.


Celeste comes from Latin (specifically Portuguese) origins. It means “heavenly” or “celestial” which might remind you of a tiny gift from above.


Also derived from Latin for “luck,” Felicia is also a variation of the Spanish word, “feliz” which means happiness. Another similar option is Felicity.


Since you’ve received great news, Evangeline might be an excellent choice for a girl’s name. This moniker comes from Greek roots and means “bearer of good news.” Other variations include Evangelina, Lina, and Vangie.


Hannah comes from the Hebrew word “Channah” which means “grace.” In the Old Testament, Hannah welcomed a son, Samuel, after years of waiting to bear a child.


Because your newborn brings now hope, this name would be an excellent choice. It also comes from the Old English word that means “desire of fulfillment.”


This name carries a special meaning both because of its roots and the symbolism behind the flower. The iris represents hope, courage, admiration, and faith. The name comes from Greek and means “rainbow.”


Sian originates in the Welsh language and is a variation of the name “Jane.” It also means “God’s gracious gift.” It’s actually pronounced like “Shawn.”


Victoria also comes from Latin roots and means “victorious.” Plus, in Roman mythology, Victoria is the goddess of victory. In British history, the name Victoria possesses a special significance since Queen Victoria was the second longest-reigning monarch.


If you’re looking for a name with Russian and Slavic roots, Nadia presents a great choice since it also means “hope.” Other spellings include Nadya and Nadja.

Baby boy wearing a blue knitted cap
Pshenina_m / Shutterstock

8 rainbow baby names for boys

Likewise, we’ve also compiled a list of rainbow baby names for boys. Like their feminine counterparts, these names hold possess a meaning that communicates hope and happiness. Plus, they too come from different language backgrounds.


This name comes from Hebrew origins and means “gift from God.” Some popular nicknames that are derived from the original are Nate and Nat.


Ivan is the Slavic version of John and means “God is gracious.” It’s also a popular Russian name.


Isaiah, which is Hebrew for “the coming of the lord,” was taken from the statement, “Yesha, yahu” which translates to “God saves.” This name is also popular among the Judaic, Muslim, and Christian communities.


Bennett is a variation of the name Benedict which means “blessed.” More often, you might hear this name as a last name, but in medieval Europe, it became quite popular and can be traced back to the founding of the Benedictine order of monks.


Gerard, which means “brave,” comes from a German background. Other meanings attributed to this name include “hardy” and “strong.”


Barack comes from the Swahili word for blessing. It’s also the shorter version of the Arabic name, Mubarak. If you look at the roots and history of this name, three of its consonants (b, r, k) also refer to the knee, or rather, the act of kneeling to receive a blessing from a religious elder.


Angelo is a popular Italian name that means “angel” or “messenger,” which makes the name perfect for your little messenger of hope. Other variations include Angel, Angelino, and DeAngelo.


When looking at the good fortune of having another child, you can choose the name Fausto, which is also Italian. This name means “man of luck.” It’s also taken from the Latin word “favere” or favor.

4 unisex rainbow baby names

We also found some excellent gender-neutral rainbow baby names that represent a hopeful outlook for the future. These include:

  • Luca: which means “bringer of light” in Italian
  • Jesse: taken from the Hebrew name, Yshai, which means “gift”
  • Shay: also taken from the same Hebrew roots as Jesse and also means “gift”
  • Evan: a Welsh variation of John that means “God is gracious”

So, there you have the top 20 rainbow baby names that have significant meanings. You might find that these selections remind you of hope in the future as you watch your child grow up while still honoring the memory of his or her sibling.

Leslie Anderson
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Leslie Anderson is a freelance writer/writing coach from Roswell, N.M. She enjoys gardening, cooking, and helping students…
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