Searching the world for the perfect name for your baby can be both overwhelming and a lot of fun. So often, we tend to stick to the names that we’re familiar with within our culture, forgetting that there are trillions of other names outside of our home bubble.
And if you’re looking for a genuinely unique name, you’re in the right spot. Finnish names are fun, thought-provoking, and certain to start a conversation. Before you make your final baby name decision, take a look at this list of the most popular Finnish boy names and see if anything strikes your fancy!
Names that hail from the Scandinavian region are typically unique in nature, though you’ll likely recognize many of them as names that are popular in your neck of the woods. However, with Finland’s language roots being quite different from its neighbors, other Scandinavians would consider this list as being some pretty unique Finnish male names, even for them!
Popular Finnish boy names
Like most countries, Finland has a collection of popular names that parents consistently choose to name their babies. Some of them are more common on a global scale than others, and many of them have a unique or interesting meaning.
And here, you’ll find below the most popular Finnish names for boys from last year according to the Digital and Population Data Services Agency of Finland. The parents have voted so let’s see which direction they went!
Primarily of Scandinavian origin, Juhani was the most common name in Finland last year. It’s a beautiful, masculine name that means “God is gracious”. It’s actually the Finnish form of the name “John”, so you probably can see why a name that sounds so incredibly unique to the rest of us is very common in Finland!
Juhani is a fantastic name to choose if you’re looking for something classically Finnish, as it encompasses that completely.
It’s hard to get much more Finnish than “Olavi” as the name comes from Old Norse and has undeniable Scandinavian roots. Olavi means “family descendant”, and while the meaning is incredibly straightforward, it also brings a sense of pride to the family as a whole.
Olavi is a variation of another popular boys’ name, “Olaf”, which you may have come across in the past decade or so, especially if you’ve already got children! Olaf also happens to be one of the most popular Scandinavian boy names at the moment, so this cool twist on it with Olavi could really set your child apart!
Another version of the English name “John”, Johannes, carries the same meaning as “Juhani”, which is “God is gracious”. Used heavily in Scandinavian countries, Johannes is of Germanic origin, and you might hear it shortened to “Hans”.
Johannes is an incredible, strong name, and you’re unlikely to hear it anywhere in the world other than the Scandinavian region.
The name “Mikael”, which sounds incredibly similar to the ever-popular “Michael”, is widely used in Finland and surrounding countries. Mikael means “gift from God”, which could be said of any newborn baby! A perfect name for your little bundle of joy, Mikael (when spelled as such) remains as unique as ever.
No matter where you go in the world, you’re certain to come across an Oliver or two. Oliver, often “Ollie” for short, is an adorable name that has gained a ton of traction with new parents in recent years. Oliver comes from an Old Norse word meaning “ancestors’ descendants”, but in other cultures, such as Latin and Greek, Oliver means “olive tree” or “peace”.
You get to decide what this perfect name means for you and your family, but regardless of what you choose, the meaning will be relevant.
Did you know: Oliver also made the top 10 for the most popular Swedish names for boys last year. Take a look at our article to see which names beat it!
Primarily of Scandinavian origin, you likely won’t hear Ilmari very often anywhere else in the world, which is a shame, because the name itself is amazing! It’s different without being overwhelming or hard to pronounce, and it flows nicely.
Ilmari means “air” and comes from the name “Ilmarien”, who is an immortal character in Finnish mythology.
Onni is such a cute name and so completely Finnish that you won’t want to leave it off of your list of potential names. Onni originated in Finland, and it means “happiness” and “luck”.
There are few baby name meanings that are better than this one, so if you love a short, cute, to-the-point name with a fun and inspiring meaning, Onni might be the choice for you!
The name Elias is believed to be a variant of “Elijah”, which means “the Lord is my God”. Elias is super popular in Finland and all around Scandinavia and comes with the nickname “Eli”, which many parents opt to use.
Elias is a super cute Finnish boy name that easily catches the attention of anyone that hears it! It’s also easy to match with middle and last names, making it a great choice for many parents.
You may want to take a look at the most popular Finnish girl names from last year as well!
Eino comes from the Old Norse name Einn, which means “one”. Eino is an original and very unique name derivative, and it means quite a bit to those that choose to use it. Typically, parents that use the name “Eino” hold Old Norse very close to their hearts.
It’s one of those unique Finnish boy names that allows you to stay very close to the culture, regardless of where life takes you.
Matias is an undeniably popular Finnish name, though you might not hear it much in other parts of the world. Matias means “gift of God”, and many Finnish parents choose to use it simply because of its beautiful meaning.
The name Matias manages to sound sweet and strong simultaneously, and when you use it for your baby, you can be certain you’re doing the Finnish culture serious justice. As a variant of “Matthew”, you can also find other variations throughout Scandinavia, like Matheo which made the list of the most popular Danish names for boys last year.
If you’ve been searching for old Finnish boy names, Toivo should definitely be on your list! Toivo is of Finnish origin, and it means “hope”, which is a beautiful meaning to give to a new baby boy.
Though the meaning is gentle, the pronunciation and spelling of the name are a bit harder, which continuously attracts Scandinavian parents. Toivo is a fun and unexpected name in many places around the globe and comes highly recommended if sticking close to Finnish roots is important to you.
Antero is inherently a boy’s name, and it means “strong” and “manly”. Antero is known as the Finnish name for “Andrew”, which remains incredibly popular around the world today.
You may find that Antero is the perfect choice for parents that love the idea of using “Andrew” as their baby name but aren’t too thrilled regarding how often it tends to show up in local daycares and schools.
Why not check out the most popular Scandinavian names for girls too? And for some country-specific inspiration…
- Does Sweden’s huge pop culture influence tickle your fancy? Why not check out the most popular Swedish names for girls from last year!
- How about the sweeping natural beauty of Norway, with the most popular Norwegian girl names from last year?
- Stylish Denmark is high on anyone’s list these days, as are these names from last year’s most popular Danish girl names.
- What more could you want than Iceland’s incredible landscapes crossed with some mystical characters? Last year’s most popular Icelandic girl names could give you the same inspiration.
Leo is such a sweet name, and its popularity extends far outside the barriers of Scandinavia. The name “Leo” is closely associated with one of the most majestic animals on the planet, as its meaning is “lion”.
At the same time, the sound “Leo” makes when spoken aloud, along with the animals that it’s associated with, makes it popular with parents everywhere. Leo can also be associated with the zodiac sign for the eighth month of the year, and the constellations as well.
Primarily popular in the Scandinavian region, Viljami means “with gilded helmet” and has close associations with warriors. Because of that, it’s also been known to mean “resolute protector”. Parents that really want to stick to their Finnish roots typically love traditional Finnish names for boys like Viljami.
It’s strong and, despite its intimidating spelling, not too difficult to pronounce. Viljami is the perfect Scandinavian warrior name for your new addition.
Tapani is incredibly popular in Finland, and is of Hebrew descent, meaning “victorious”. Very common in Scandinavia, primarily Finland, Tapani is the equivalent of “Stephen”.
If you do enough research, you’ll find that Tapani has varying meanings in different cultures, but if you’re sticking to Finnish, then this is all the information you’ll need regarding the name!
The masculine equivalent of “Emily” or “Amelia”, the meanings of the name “Emil” are “excellent” and “rival”. Emil is of Latin descent, and it’s been popular in Finland for quite some time.
Emil is a wonderful name overall, as it’s easy to spell, say, and pronounce. It also goes well with complicated last names, making it a fantastic pick for parents all over the world.
FYI: Emil actually made the top 10 most popular Norwegian male names last year. Take a look at our article to see who grabbed position number one!
Tapio is a common male given name in Finland, and its extreme popularity stems from the fact that it is driven by the fact that Tapio is a form of the Finnish god of nature, animals, forests, and hunting.
You’ll find that Tapio is the perfect name for parents that have a strong connection to Mother Earth, as it truly means something to them. Tapio is a beautiful, meaningful name for a baby boy.
Very popular with parents in Finland, it’s about time that Aatos gained worldwide popularity. It’s a cool name with an intelligent meaning, and it definitely deserves more attention than it gets.
Aatos means “thought” or “idea”, and while it sees little love in various other Scandinavian countries, there aren’t any that love this amazing name quite as much as those in Finland. If you live outside of the region, and you’re considering genuinely popular Finnish male names, Aatos is a superb choice!
While Eemil may sound like “Emil”, they actually have different roots with different meanings. Eemil is of Finnish origin and means “one who is like the elves”. Safe to say, this is a truly magical meaning.
Just don’t pronounce the “ee” at the start as we normally would in English; it’s more like a long “eh”, like if you were to pronounce an extra long version of the “e” sound in “bet”.
Benjamin is a name that you’re likely to hear all around the world, as it’s had plenty of time to gain global popularity. Benjamin comes from the Old Testament of the bible, and while the name holds plenty of biblical meaning, it’s popular with parents of every faith.
In Hebrew, Benjamin means “son of the right hand”, and it comes with cute nicknames such as “Ben”, “Benny”, and “Benji”. Benjamin is one of those names that will never steer you wrong, and your child is certain to love it as they grow.
Veikko is a primarily Swedish name that you’ll find throughout Scandinavia and in Finland. Veikko is a sweet name for a little sibling, as it means “brother”.
It’s definitely one of the more unique Finnish male names, and if you’re unsure how to pronounce it, it rhymes with “Nico”. Veikko is a sturdy name with a sweet meaning, and unless you’re living in Finland, it’s certain to turn a few heads.
Samuel is known primarily as a biblical name, but it’s used by children all over the world within families of different faiths. Samuel means “God has heard”, and it’s an adorable name that goes with almost any middle and last name.
You’ll find that Samuel has some fantastic nicknames, like “Sam” and “Sammy”, and it’s overall a well-received name across the globe.
In Finland, the name “Armas” means “dear” or “beloved”. The name is incredibly popular in Finland, and it’s really cool and somewhat surprising that it hasn’t taken off all over the world.
Armas is a tough name with a sweet meaning, and it’s no surprise that Finnish parents love it! And despite it being very popular in this northern land, Armas actually originated in Spain, coming from the term “armas” meaning “maker of arms” or “soldier”.
We can start to see a pattern here, with variants of Emil apparently being one of the more popular Finnish boy names last year!
Eemeli is a more Finnish variant of Emil and, like Emil, means “rival”. It’s actually pronounced kind of similar to “Emily” in English with a longer “eh” sound at the start, so if you’re looking for a name that sounds more gender neutral (at least outside of Finland), this could be your pick.
Alvar is a predominately traditional Finnish boy name, and it means “elf” or “a magical army”. However, it’s a name that’s been used around the world, though primarily in Germany and Scandinavia, and depending on where it’s used, may have different meanings. In fact, in Old German, Alvar means “all guard”.
It’s typical for names to have different meanings, and when residing within a culture, the people use their meaning for the name in question. So, if you’re using Alvar from a Finnish perspective, it definitely has a magical meaning.
It’s completely common for traditional Finnish names for boys to have a connection to warriors, as the Old Norse and Viking roots run deep. Oskari means “leaping warrior”, and that connotation makes it incredibly popular with parents in Finland, or those that have an affinity to Finnish culture.
Oskari is a great name, and many families choose nicknames like “O” and “Oskar” to go with it.
Of both Latin and Scandinavian origin, Kristian means “a follower of Christ” in biblical terms. Kristian is an alternate form of the Latin spelled “Christian”, and it’s common for names that migrate to the Scandinavian region to experience “k’s” where there once were “c’s”.
Kristian is a solid name that dropped off the global charts for a while, but has made its way back up in recent years.
Vilho is a name that comes straight from the Scandinavian region, and it means “resolute defender”. No surprise there! Vilho is absolutely the name of a mighty warrior, and it makes a really fun, unique, and still classy Finnish male name for your new addition.
Not only will people ask you where the name came from, but they’ll ask you what it means, which is the best part! After all, “resolute warrior” has a pretty cool meaning.
Noel, the masculine version of “Noelle” simply means “Christmas”. Now, the name itself is wonderful, with a simple pronunciation and a sweet sound, and any parent is sure to love it.
However, if you happen to be part of a family that adores all things Christmas, then Noel might be the perfect baby name for you. Represent your favorite holiday and give your new baby a fantastic name all at once!
Eeli is a Finnish variant of Eli and means “to ascend” or “uplifted soul”. While Elias also made the list of most popular Finnish boy names from last year, with its nickname Eli, Eeli could actually be a better choice if you’re looking for something that gives a much stronger nod to Finland.
It’s a unique, beautiful-sounding name with true links back to the country, meaning it could tick all of your boxes.
An Estonian masculine name that comes from the folk hero “Kalev”, Kalevi is an adorable name that means “giant” or “strong man”. While parents today often shy away from bragging about anything too masculine before their little ones are ready to own it, Kalevi makes for a sweet but strong name for any little boy. The nickname is “Kal”, which is just as cute!
Daniel is a biblical name that can be traced as far back as the Old Testament. Its meaning is “God is my judge”, and it’s the masculine form of the female moniker “Danielle”.
As you probably experienced with the other Daniels in your life, it is the long-form name of nicknames like “Dan” and “Danny”, and its popularity extends long outside of Finland and the Scandinavian region. Daniel is a classic name, popular around the world.
Oiva is Finnish all the way down to its deeply planted roots. Oiva has a simple meaning of “excellent” or “splendid”, and it’s near impossible to think of a better name meaning to encompass the feelings that come with having a new baby (other than “tired”, “stressed” and “a little bit scared”).
Oiva is certainly a unique Finnish boy name, even as far as Finnish standards, so if you’re looking for something that stands out, this could be the one!
In Russian, the name Aleski means “helper of man”. While the name originated in Russia, it quickly branched out, and it wasn’t long before Scandinavian countries began to use it.
Aleski is a solid name with a sweet meaning behind it, and it’s not uncommon for it to be shortened to “Al” or “Alex”. It doesn’t top the Finnish name lists year after year, so while you’re certain to come across a few here and there, your child will still stand out.
There are few other names that are more well-known in Rome than that of dictator Julius Caesar. While most parents don’t fancy naming their children after dictators, Julius has come a long way since then, and it makes for a super cute little boys’ name today!
Julius means “downy-bearded”, so if name meanings are your thing, you might want to choose something else.
Popular in mostly Finland and Germany, Valtteri means “army rule”. It can be shortened to “Val” but it makes a fantastic name for parents that want something strong, yet different, for their baby boy.
Valterri is both of those things, and so much more. It remains unique yet somehow low key all at once but in a really good way.
While Matteo is often a common choice in Scandinavia, you’ll find that Matti is a far more popular Finnish name for boys. The name Matti is a version of Matthew and means “gift of God”.
It’s a complete name in itself, so don’t confuse this as actually being a nickname of Matthew as you may find with, say, “Matty” in English-speaking countries. At the same time, this familiarity could make it an easy choice for parents not based in Finland but who wish to acknowledge a Finnish connection.
Sakari is a notorious Indian name, and it made its way into the hands and hearts of Finnish parents and never looked back! Finland is fantastic at taking names from other cultures and honoring them on their own, and Sakari, meaning “sweet”, is a perfect example of this.
So often, regardless of where a name originates, it can become incredibly popular in other places, and this is one of the absolute coolest factors pertaining to names!
Aleksander is a name of Greek origin and means “man’s defender” or “warrior”. As you can probably tell, it’s a variant of Alexander, just with the “ks” replacement that you often find in countries like Russia and Armenia.
Did you know: Alexander was actually the second most popular Icelandic boy name from last year! Take a look at that link to see which name made number one.
Akseli is another popular Finnish boy name and means “father of peace”. A Finnish variant of the name Axel, it’s a strong name with familiar sounds that could be perfect for your little boy.
Leevi has been found in several Scandinavian countries over the last few years, but it remains most popular as a Finnish male name by far.
The name Leevi is a Finnish variant of Levi and means Leevi means “attached” or “joined” in Hebrew, with others saying the meaning can also be “hero” or “knight”. Safe to say, none of these would be bad meanings for your little boy to bear!
Unique Finnish Boy Names
No matter what culture or part of the world they hail from, new parents are consistently looking for a name that’s unique, and who can blame them? In a world full of Sophie’s and Johnathan’s (both great names, by the way), Finnish parents have managed to take uniqueness to a whole new level, and they’re more than happy to share it with the rest of the planet.
If your baby naming goals include finding something that’s both a popular yet unique Finnish name for boys, then you’ll want to take a close look at the list that follows.