R names for babies are some of the most fun to run with! There are Biblical names with R to consider, plenty from nature, classics from languages all over the world, and even some royal inspiration. The letter R gives a roaring start to some of the cutest baby names around. If you’re looking for the perfect R name for your baby boy or girl, you’ve really lucked out with our roster!

Girl Baby Names That Start With R

Rachel: A beloved Hebrew baby name meaning “ewe” or sheep, it’s one that’s not rare, and definitely not going anywhere. Rahela is another version of this pretty pick. 

Raelynn: This modern name has picked up speed in recent years; it’s a combination of the shortened form of Rachel, Rae, with the suffix Lynn or “lake” added. 

Rain: The beautiful word name from nature was traditionally a nickname for Lorraine, but modern parents have been choosing it more frequently as a stand-alone R name. 

Rama: Sanskrit names are having a moment. This stunner means “lofty,” for a born goal-chaser. 

Ramona: A Spanish name meaning “wise protector,” it might fill you with a certain sense of nostalgia tied to the Beverly Cleary series. 

Raphaela: This beautiful Hebrew baby name means “God has healed.” For a boy, drop the “a” and consider Raphael. 

Rapunzel: Disney mamas won’t shy away from a good princess name! This long-haired beauty had major spunk and set herself free. The name originally comes from German, given to a leafy vegetable called “lamb’s lettuce.” 

Raquel: Evoking the bombshell Raquel Welch, this baby name starting with R is a variation of the classic Rachel. It’s got Spanish roots and means “ewe”—a sweet moniker for the latest addition to your flock.

Rebecca: Like Rachel, the Biblical name meaning “to tie or bind” has staying power.  

Reina: This cheerful baby girl name has multiple meanings and roots; from Spanish it’s “queen.” The Hebrew translation is “pure,” and in Japanese Reina means “wise.” We love all of the above!

Regina: Another royal R name, this one meaning “queen” from the Latin. 

Renata: Though widely used across Europe, this pretty name is only recently making moves into the US top 1,000. It means “reborn” with Latin roots. 

Renee: The French version of the Latin name Renata is more well-known and shares the meaning “reborn.” 

Rhea: A Greek mythology name meaning “flowing stream,” it sounds just as pretty as its original connotation would imply. 

Rhiannon: A Welsh name with spirit and flow, it means “divine queen” and is perfect for a tiny ruler of the house. 

Ria: Short, sweet, and effortlessly beautiful… The Spanish name meaning “small river” is a definite contender.  

Rihanna: After the hip-hop superstar or just because it’s so fresh and lovely, this Arabic baby girl name translating to “sweet basil” is extra special. Reanna is a modern slant name with a similar feeling.  

Rochelle: A cute French name meaning “little rock,” it’s familiar if not overused, so makes a perfect compromise if you are looking for that balance in your R names for baby girls.

Rose: The classic flower name is lovely just as is, but there are truly enough offshoots for an entirely separate list of “rose” baby girl names. Our favorite names spin-offs include Rosemary (like the herb), Rosalie (French from Latin), Primrose (“the first rose!”), Rosina (Latin for the “little rose”), and Rosalind (again Latin, this time for “pretty rose”).  

Roslyn: This rare R-name for girls is a variant of “Rosaline” (which in itself is a variant of “Rose”). You have lots of room to play with the spelling…from Rosalynn to Rozlyn to Rozalyn.  

Rowena: A glamorous baby girl name with two meanings in Welsh: “famous friend” and “white spear.” Either works! 

Roxana: No list of baby girl names would be complete without something truly hardcore and feminist-fabulous. 

Ruby: We love this bold color name that also belongs to a stunning and valuable red gemstone, perfectly plucked for your sparkling baby girl.

Ruth: You don’t get more classic than this biblical name starting with R! (It means “friend” and would be so befitting of your new little buddy.

Boy Baby Names That Start With R

Rafael: Meaning “God has healed” this Spanish/Portuguese names definitely has panache! Or you could opt for the Hebrew spelling: Raphael.

Rainier: A handsome German name for boys, this one means “wise army,” and has an almost French feel to it. 

Raul: Perfect for the newest member of your pack, this swashbuckling moniker means “wolf counsel.” This boys’ baby name has Spanish roots. For a French twist spell it Raoul.

Raymond: Also from the German, the classic translates to “wise protector” and its common nickname, Ray, is a little nod to sunny days. 

Reed: One of those nature names that is easy to spell, easy to remember, and can go with pretty much any last and middle name combos... We love Reed, which is a tall, slender grass growing in marsh-like areas. 

Reeves: Love Reed but want something a little more debonair? This English occupational name actually means “bailiff” but sounds moneyed and fabulous. 

Regis: If it pulls at your heartstrings for a certain late daytime talk show host, you’re not alone. But even without that megawatt American celeb-next-door connotation, the name Regis, meaning “kingly” in French, would still be a charmer. 

Remington: This baby name starting with R has a real cowboy quality to it. It means “place on a riverbank,” which adds a lovely layer of imagery.

Renard: A little sly “fox” of a name from the French, perfect for your handsome and cunning little boy. 

Reyes: It reads like a Spanish-rooted surname, but this artful first name for baby boys is actually a spelling variation on Rhys, or “kings,” originally from the Latin, Rex. 

Rhett: We’re all about the Old Hollywood vibes with this, after the great Rhett Butler. It’s also been made popular again thanks to country music superstar Thomas Rhett. The name means “advice” from the Dutch.  

Ricardo: The Spanish/Italian version of Richard is a beloved name the world over, translating to “dominant ruler.”

Richmond: Another creative way to honor a Richard in the family, this German twist feels slightly more contemporary and chic. 

Roald: After the famed writer Dahl, or simply for those seeking a cool yet familiar baby boy name you don’t hear every day. Roald means “famous ruler” with Norwegian roots.  

Rocco: How freaking cute is this Italian R-name? It loosely translates to “rest,” which may not be something you get a lot of for a while…but your sweet little Rocco will make it all worth it.  

Rockwell: Right on trend for creative baby boy name ideas, the English moniker meaning “rock spring” is a definite contender. 

Romeo: Wherefore art thou, baby name? We love Shakespeare names, and you can’t beat the most famous romantic of all. 

Ronan: The Irish baby boy name meaning “little seal” is currently resting just outside the top 250 baby boy names in the US.

Roosevelt: Patriotic baby names are picking up speed with American parents, and naming your little guy after a beloved President is a great way to adopt the trend. At its core, this name translates to “rose field” from the Dutch.  

Royce: It would be hard to ignore the fancy car connotation, but that gives this cool baby boy name a special, fancy edge. Royce is bougie in its own right, meaning “son of the king.” 

Russell: The French baby boy name translating to “redhead” or “fox-colored” is a cute color name to consider for your little one.  

Gender-Neutral Baby Names That Start With R

Raegan: Another Presidential baby name idea that’s easily interchanged between boys and girls. 

Raleigh: The North Carolina city is a unique gender-neutral baby name that rolls right off the tongue. Originally, the name means “meadow of roe deer” from the English. 

Ramsey: You might have pegged this one for a surname that’s found popularity in the first position, but Ramsey is actually a gender-neutral given name meaning “low-lying land” with English roots.  

Raven: Nature names abound these days, and the more creative the better. This slick black bird provides an edgy gender-neutral baby name. 

Rawlings: An English familial surname that fits the quintessential search criteria of easy to spell and pronounce, not heard often, and easy on the ears.

Reese: Like Reyes/Rex from our boys list, this adorable gender-neutral baby name means “king” and fits the bill for a cute and refined, single-syllable first name for a baby boy or girl.

Reign: If you like Rain, but want a different interpretation, consider this one meaning “to rule,” which has a spirited and sassy feel. 

Remi: Whether spelled with an “i” or “y” at the end, this gender-neutral French baby name meaning “oarsmen” is a sweet option.  

Rhodes: A dignified gender-neutral baby name starting with R, it softly suggests travel and adventure due to the pronunciation match to the word “roads,” but has a beautiful intrinsic meaning as well—“where roses grow” in Greek. 

Riley: One of the best-known gender-neutral R names, it dipped in popularity in the 1970s and has been climbing back up ever since. Riley means “courageous” with Irish roots.  

Rio: Names with more than one meaning are always special. This one is a Japanese baby girl name translating to “place of the cherry blossoms” and also a gender-neutral baby name with Spanish origins meaning “river.” You might consider it as a place name for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  

River: The beautiful nature name is an apt choice for a little boy or girl; you can also pluralize it for something more unique—Rivers

Robin: A nature name that would work for a songbird of either gender! Outside of its avian meaning, this English name means “bright fame”—how about that for your emerging star?

Romilly: An English name meaning “citizen of Rome,” it’s a dignified choice for a baby boy or girl. 

Rory: Though the “official” meaning of this Irish name is “red king,” it would work great for a little queen-to-be as well! (After all, you can’t mention the name “Rory” without invoking the heroine of the Gilmore Girls!) It’s also the perfect nickname for everything from Roderick to Lorelei.

Royalty: It doesn’t get more regal than this bold word name idea for your little prince or princess. Royal and Royle are similarly fun ideas. 

Rue: The Greek nature name—“herb”—also means “street” in French. These cute meanings should make up for the fact that in English, the word rue is a regret.

Rumi: A beautiful, gender-neutral Japanese baby name translating to “beauty” and “flow,” it also is used to refer to the gorgeous blue stone, lapis lazuli. 

Ryan: Rounding out our R’s with one of the top baby names of all times, this Irish moniker was traditionally given to boys but is now seeing a surge in usage for baby girls as well. It means “little king.”

Rye: If you’re looking for a rare gender-neutral R-name, Rye is your guy (or gal!). A nature name that refers to the grain, Rye also comes from the word “king” in Gaelic. Oh, and it’s a super cute nickname for Ryder.

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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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