100 Unique Male Japanese Names

Updated
These enchanting Japanese boy names are bursting with cuteness and heroic charm.

There’s no doubt about it. Japanese boy names are starting to gain momentum as some of the cutest and coolest baby names around.

Each name is rich in character and meaning, and with so much to choose from, you might even find it challenging to pin down some of your favorites!

Whether you’re looking for a very unique, unusual, powerful, or inspiring name for your son, then we’ve got it all here for you.

So let’s step into the world of the Rising Sun and help you find your perfect name.


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100 Unique Japanese Names for Boys

Here you will find all you need to know about each beautiful Japanese boy’s name.

Aiden

What a wonderful way to get us started on our Japanese boy names! Aiden is a very popular boy name throughout the world today. In Gaelic, it means “fire” or “fiery” after the Celtic sun god. Other Japanese versions mean “large hill,” “think deeply,” or “electrical.” When saying the name in Japanese, it also sounds very different compared to the Westernized version, which is simply pronounced as AY-den.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Flame
  • Pronunciation: aah-yi-den
  • Variations: Aidan, Ayden, Aidyn, Aideen, Aidenn, Aidene
  • Namesakes: Aiden McGeady, an Irish professional footballer. Aiden Turner, a British actor and model.
  • Popularity: Aiden has grown considerably in popularity, hitting a top position of 24 in 2020.
Popular, Powerful

Akio

Akio is a combination of two unique words. “Aki” means “light” or “bright,” and “o” stands for “man” or “husband.” This could be a very cool name to add to your list of baby names. Who wouldn’t want to name their gorgeous new son a “bright boy?”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Bright boy
  • Pronunciation: AH-kee-oh
  • Variations: Akiho, Akihiko, Akira
  • Namesakes: Akio Toyoda, a Japanese businessman and president of the Toyota Motor Corporation. Akio Nojima, a Japanese actor, voice actor, and narrator from Nishitōkyō, Tokyo.
  • Popularity: Akio is a very rare name but is starting to show a slight increase in popularity
Classic, Inspiring

Arashi

Arashi will differ in meaning, depending on the type of Japanese kanji symbols incorporated into the name. One version can mean “new,” while another means to “be affectionate.” There is also a cool five-member Japanese boy band who go by the name Arashi.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Be affectionate, new
  • Pronunciation: aah-rah-shee
  • Variations: Arashid, Arashih, Aarashi, Harashi
  • Popularity: Arashi is considered very rare, with very little data available on the name.
Unique

Asahi

Asahi is a powerful name for a young boy, particularly if you love basking in the glorious rays of the sunrise each day! You won’t come across this name too often in other parts of the world, besides Japan. Sometimes Asahi is combined with other names, for example, Asahifuji, where fuji means “dweller near the river where wisteria grows.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Morning sunlight, bright rising
  • Pronunciation: aa-sah-hi
  • Variations: Assahi, Ashahi, Asahio
  • Popularity: Asahi is a less common boy name. However, it is gradually increasing in popularity.
Classic, Nature-loving, Cute

Atsushi

Atsushi carries a very trendy and unique Japanese sound. It can also mean “compassionate warrior.” A very attractive and strong name for your precious little boy!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Dedicated, warm, cordial
  • Variations: Atsusi, Atsushio, Hatsushi
  • Namesakes: Atsushi Taniguchi, a Japanese actor and race car driver in the auto reality television series, HyperDrive. Atsushi Onita, a Japanese actor, politician, and retired wrestler.
  • Popularity: Atsushi was more popular during the early 1900s and has since disappeared off the popularity charts.
Modern

Ayumu

Ayumu is a very rare male Japanese name, holding a strong aura of mystery and intrigue. Au means “to walk,” and mu means “dream” or “vision,” bringing us to its unique and beautiful meaning of a “walking dream.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Walking dream
  • Variations: Ayummu, Ayama, Ajumi, Aumu
  • Namesakes: Ayumu Hirano, a Japanese professional snowboarder who is a two-time Olympic medalist.
  • Popularity: Ayumu is starting to show a slight increase in popularity.
Classic, Free-spirited

Baku

Baku is a strong and very unique name for a Japanese boy. While used in Japan, it is more common in India and Indonesia, where it means “war horn,” “lightning,” or “brilliant.” A name speaking of strength, stamina, and valor for your new little boy.

  • Origin: Japanese, Hindi
  • Meaning: Desert
  • Style: Powerful, Vintage
  • Variations: Bauku, Bakou, Bhaku, Bakku

Benjiro

Benjiro is a charming name, offering a great deal of character. If peace is particularly important to you, this name may be perfect for your new tiny treasure about to enter this world.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: One who enjoys peace
  • Pronunciation: ben-jee-roh
  • Variations: Benjira, Banjiro, Bengiro
  • Popularity: Moving from a position of being a very rare name, Benjiro started increasing in popularity in 2018.
Traditional, Unique, Cute

Botan

When hearing Botan, you will likely find yourself getting lost in the many stunning displays of Japanese cherry trees lining the streets of Japan. Popularly known as Cherry Blossoms, these trees are also known as the Sakura, the national flower of Japan. A beautiful tree that ushers in spring and a season for renewal.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Blossom
  • Pronunciation: BOH-tahn
  • Variations: Botane, Botanne, Botang
Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Byakuya

Byakuya either means “white” or “night,” depending on the arrangement of Japanese characters. If you love the meaning and sound, you’ll know for sure your baby will have a “one in a million” name. Families in India and parts of Indonesia are also known to use the name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: White, night
  • Pronunciation: yah-kuh-yah
  • Variations: Byakya, Bakouya, Bakuya
  • Popularity: Byakuya is a very rare boy name, hardly heard today.
Unusual, Traditional
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Chikara

Chikara carries a captivating meaning for a young boy. A kawaii (cute) name that is often used to demonstrate strength and longevity. Professional wrestling competitions are known for including the term Chikara in their promotions and branding.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Power
  • Pronunciation: chee-KAH-rah
  • Variations: Chikarai, Chikkara, Chikaura, Chikaraa
  • Popularity: Chikara is a common Japanese boy name and is rare across the rest of the world.
Unique, Classic, Heroic

Chiko

Chiko is a trendy, badass name for a baby boy and can also have the meaning “harmonious.” An added bonus is that it’s easy to remember and easy to spell! You will also come across Chiko in various African countries.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Arrow, pledge
  • Pronunciation: chee-koh
  • Variations: Chieko, Chicko, Cheiko, Chikoo, Chikou
  • Namesakes: Chiko, a fictional character and German film, acted by Denis Moschitto in 2008.
  • Popularity: Chiko is an uncommon Japanese boy name but is gradually increasing in popularity.
Powerful, Unique

Chokichi

A very unique name indeed! If you’re looking for a more traditional Japanese name for your baby boy, then Chokichi could be a winner. You could shorten it to a catchy sounding Kichi. A perfect name for wishing good fortune throughout your son’s life.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Good fortune
  • Pronunciation: cho-KEE-chee
  • Variations: Chokuchi, Chokichi, Chokoichi, Chokuichi
Traditional, Cool

Chou

Chou is a strong, character-filled male Japanese name, which is also fairly common in China. As a girl’s name, it is also known for meaning “butterfly.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Challenge
  • Pronunciation: chow
  • Variations: Choue, Chout, Choud, Chous
  • Namesakes: Chou Tien-Chen, a Taiwanese professional badminton player. Chou Tzuyu, a Taiwanese singer.
  • Popularity: Beginning as a very rare name, Chou is starting to become a more popular name.
Cool, Heroic

Daichi

Daichi is a slightly more common male Japanese name in Japan, China, and Singapore. An enchanting male name that also means “intellect” and “wisdom.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Great, land, earth
  • Pronunciation: DIE-chee
  • Variations: Dachi, Dichi, Daiichi, Daaichi
  • Namesakes: Daichi Kamada, a Japanese professional footballer. Daichi Hashimoto is a Japanese professional wrestler, signed by Big Japan Pro Wrestling and the current World Strong Heavyweight Champion.
  • Popularity: Daichi used to be a slightly more popular name and has since dropped off the popularity charts.
Modern, Unique, Nature-loving

Daisuke

Daisuke is a special combination of two Japanese names, “dai,” meaning “impressive or great,” and “suke,” which means “help.” This popular male name in Thailand and Japan is starting to gain some traction in other parts of the world. However, it still remains a rare name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Impressive, great help
  • Pronunciation: DIE-soo-keh
  • Variations: Daissuke, Daitsuke, Dasuke
  • Namesakes: Daisuke Kishio, a Japanese voice actor, singer, and narrator. Daisuke Hirakawa, a Japanese voice actor and official voice actor for Orlando Bloom. Daisuke Maruyama, a Japanese professional golfer.
Unique, Heroic

Danno

Danno is a trendy-sounding name, also commonly used as a Japanese surname. It is also a unique variation of the Hebrew name Daniel, meaning “God is my judge.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Field gathering
  • Pronunciation: dah-noh
  • Variations: Dannoo, Dhanno, Dano, Danno
  • Namesakes: Danno O’Mahony, an Irish professional wrestler. Danno Simpson, an American singer, and songwriter.
  • Popularity: Danno is an uncommon name, gradually increasing in popularity.
Modern, Powerful

Doraaki

This unique-sounding Japanese boy name sounds very similar to those delicious Japanese Dorayaki pancakes—a traditional dessert with yummy red bean filling. Doraaki could make a very cute name for a baby boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Road, sky
  • Pronunciation: doh-raa-kee
  • Popularity: Doraaki is not listed on any popularity chart making this a rare name.
Vintage, Cool

Eijirou

Now, this strong and unique baby boy name of Eijirou offers an attractive meaning for parents. Eijirous certainly sounds like a strong hero or Samurai warrior. A different arrangement of the kanji symbols gives the meaning of “cheerfulness.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Crystal, Samurai
  • Pronunciation: eh-ee-jee-rou
  • Variations: Eijiro, Ijiro, Heijiro, Ejiro
  • Namesakes: Eijirō Tōno, a Japanese actor whose career lasted for more than 50 years.
Unusual, Powerful, Heroic

Emiya

Emiya is commonly used as a surname in countries such as India, Indonesia, China, and Japan. However, you will also come across it as a catchy first name. Emiya carries a wonderful meaning for any handsome young boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Laugh, progress
  • Pronunciation: eh-mee-yah
  • Variations: Emiyah, Esmiya, Emiyas, Emmiya
  • Popularity: Emiya is a rare name, which hasn’t shifted much in popularity.
Unique, Free-spirited, Cute
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Eri

Eri is a gorgeous name for a boy, offering loads of Japanese cuteness or kawaii. It is also used in Irish, where it means “my awake one,” and in America, it means “my guardian.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: My watcher, watching
  • Pronunciation: eh-ree
  • Variations: Erie, Erio, Erri, Yeri, Eris
  • Namesakes: Eri Marina Yo, an Indonesian inline speed skater.
  • Popularity: Eri has fluctuated considerably in popularity and is starting to make a great comeback.
Cool, Cute

Etsuo

Etsuo can not only mean rejoice but “man” or “birth,” depending on the arrangement of kanji characters. If you’re hoping for a name unique to Japan, then Etsuo would make a wonderful choice! This name beautifully captures the deep feeling of joy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Rejoice
  • Pronunciation: eet-su-oh
  • Variations: Etssuo, Esuo, Itsuo, Atsuo
  • Popularity: Etsuo is a very rare name, not ranked on any popularity charts.
Unusual, Powerful

Fudo

Fudo is a name rich in Japanese culture and religion. It comes from Vajrayana Buddhism and East Asian Buddhism, where Fudō Myōō is the name given to one of Five Wisdom Kings. In Japan and China, Fudō is a wrathful deity, also referred to as Acala or Achala. Fudō Falls is also a beautiful waterfall in the city of Hachimantai.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: God of fire and wisdom
  • Variations: Fudou, Fhudo,Fuddo, Fudho
  • Popularity: Fudo is a very rare name, featuring very low on popularity charts.
Classic, Powerful, Dark

Fukashi

Fukashi is one of the many unique Japanese boy names for you to choose from. This name carries a strong meaning for parents who value character and stamina in the life of their son.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Depth
  • Pronunciation: fuh-kah-shi
  • Variations: Fukaichi, Faukasha, Fukassi, Fokashi
  • Namesakes: Fukashi Mizutani, a Japanese professional kickboxer. Fukashi Minamimura, a Japanese baseball player.
  • Popularity: Fukashi is a slightly more popular name in Japan and very rare across the rest of the world.
Unique, Traditional

Fumihiro

Fumihiro may be a lengthy name, but it sure offers some gorgeous nicknames, such as Fumi or Hiro. In Japanese, Fumi means “sentence” or “writing,” while “hiro” means “wide” or “large.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Large sentence
  • Pronunciation: FUH-mi-hi-ro
  • Variations: Fumiharu, Fumihira, Fumijiro, Fumihare
  • Namesakes: Fumihiro Suzuki, a retired Japanese professional baseball catcher, and coach for the Orix Buffaloes. Fumihiro Oikawa, a former Japanese professional figure skater.
  • Popularity: Fumihiro hasn’t made it onto any popularity charts.
Unique, Unusual

Gaisei

Gaisei is a powerful name for a baby boy. The powerful meaning brings the great, heroic samurai warriors to mind. Gaisei is also known as one of the characters from The Last Blade 2, or Kouryu, a popular fighting game from the late 90s.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Victory song, Heroic
  • Pronunciation: gah-ee-seh
  • Variations: Gisei, Gaisi, Gasei, Aisei
  • Popularity: Gaisei is a very rare boy name, not listed on any popularity charts.
Unique, Cool

Genkei

Genkei captures the exquisite beauty of the Japanese language. A lovely meaning which would make a strong and affectionate name for a baby boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: To be honored
  • Pronunciation: ge-en-keh
  • Variations: Genki, Genke, Genkai, Genkui, Gengki
  • Namesakes: Genkei Masamune, a Japanese botanist.
Powerful, Heroic

Giichi

Giichi is a fairly common Japanese boy name. However, it is very rare in other parts of the world. It also means “ceremony,” “justice,” or “one rule.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Single rule
  • Pronunciation: gee-EE-chee
  • Variations: Gieichi, Guiichi, Giici, Jiichi
  • Namesakes: Giichi Nomura, a Japanese human rights activist. Giichi Nishihara, a Japanese film director, screenwriter, and actor. Giichi Arima, a Japanese baseball player.
Powerful, Traditional

Ginjiro

Ginjiro oozes Japanese charm and character. A name fit for an adorable little boy who is bound to add so much value to your life. You could also say Ginjiro has a bit of a badass attitude to it!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Good silver
  • Variations: Ginjirou, Genjiro, Gunjiro, Jinjiro
  • Namesakes: Ginjiro Shigeoka, a Japanese professional boxer. Ginjiro Sumitani, a Japanese professional baseball player for the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles.
Unique, Traditional

Hachirobee

Hachirobee offers a unique sound compared with our other male Japanese names. A very rare first name also meaning “eight” and “man” or “men’s.” You could shorten it to a catchy version, such as Hachi, which translates to “eight.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Soldier, protect
  • Pronunciation: hah-chee-roh-bee
  • Variations: Hachirobei, Hachirabi, Hashirabai
Unusual, Vintage
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Hachiuma

If you’re looking for a charming, very rare Japanese boy name, then Hachiuma could make a wonderful choice! A name that is destined to stand out and can easily be shortened to Hachi.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Eight horses
  • Pronunciation: hah-CHEE-oo-mah
  • Variations: Hachijumi, Hachiumou, Hachijumei
Traditional, Free-spirited

Hinata

Hinata is fairly common in Japan as a given name and surname. This attractive name can also mean “place in the sun” or “light” and “warmth.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Sunflower, facing the sun
  • Variations: Hainata, Hinatea, Hinatai, Hinataj, Hinauta
  • Namesakes: Hinata Homma, a Japanese idol singer. Hinata Takeda, a Japanese manga artist. Hinata Watanabe, a Japanese kickboxer.
  • Popularity: Hinata is considered a very rare name throughout the world, not hitting any popularity charts.
Free-spirited, Nature-loving

Hiroto

Hiroto is a handsome name for a young little boy. It is a combination of two words- “hiro,” meaning “big or large,” and “to,” which means “fly or soar.” Other translations give the wonderful meaning of “fly far” or “esteem.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: To have high aspirations, great person
  • Pronunciation: kee-roh-tow
  • Variations: Hirootto, Hiroytho, Hiroytto, Hiroito
  • Namesakes: Hiroto Hirashima, a Japanese-American bowler and activist. Hiroto Inoue, a Japanese long-distance runner. Hiroto Kōmoto, a Japanese rock singer.
  • Popularity: After being pretty popular, Hiroto has become a less common name.
Classic

Hiroshi

Hiroshi is an inspiring name for a cute baby boy. If you cherish kindness and a generous heart, this may be the perfect name for your new little treasure. While it may be less popular today, Hiroshi sure scores high on Japanese kawaii.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Generous
  • Pronunciation: HI-roh-shi
  • Variations: Hiroshii, Hiroshio, Hiroishi, Hiroshie, Hiroyshi
  • Namesakes: Hiroshi Hanawa, a Japanese handball player. Hiroshi Hori, a Japanese ice hockey player. Hiroshi Abe, a Japanese astronomer.
  • Popularity: Hiroshi was a pretty popular boy name in the early 1900s and has since slipped off the popularity charts.
Popular, Cute

Ichirou

What a lovely meaning if you are about to have your first son! Ichirou is rich in Japanese character and speaks of deep affection and admiration for your sweet baby boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: First son
  • Pronunciation: ee-che-rou
  • Variations: Uichiro, Oichiro, Eichiro, Ichiroh
  • Namesakes: Ichirou Mizuki, properly known as Toshio Hayakawa, is a Japanese singer, lyricist, composer, voice actor, and actor.
  • Popularity: Ichirou is a very rare Japanese boy name.
Classic, Cute

Ikki

Ikki would make a very unique male Japanese name. It’s also super easy to spell and remember, making it all the more attractive.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Single horseman
  • Pronunciation: ee-kee
  • Variations: Ikkei, Ikkai, Hikki, Eikki
  • Namesakes: Ikki Kajiwara, a Japanese writer and film producer. Ikki Kita, a Japanese author, intellectual, and political philosopher from the early Shōwa period.
Cute, Heroic

Itsuki

Itsuki is a cute, catchy name for a boy. Other kanji character variations can change the meaning g to “one” or “precious.” What a gorgeous Japanese name, which is also used as a surname from time to time.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Tree
  • Variations: Itsukai, Itsukei, Hitsuki, Jitsuki
  • Namesakes: Itsuki Toyama, a Japanese politician. Itsuki Urata, a Japanese footballer.
  • Popularity: Itsuki is a fairly uncommon male name, not often heard across the world.
Classic, Cute, Nature-loving

Izumi

Izumi is a catchy name. Usually used for naming Japanese girls, boys are also known for having this gorgeous name. You could use Zumi as a slightly different version of the name. You may have also heard of the trendy cycling gear company, Pearl Izumi which began in Tokyo in 1950.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Fountain, spring
  • Pronunciation: ee-ZOO-mee
  • Variations: Idzumi, Oizumi, Itzumi, Izuumi
  • Namesakes: Izumi Shikibu, a Japanese poet from the mid-Heian period. Izumi Sakai, a Japanese pop singer, songwriter, and member of the pop-rock group Zard.
  • Popularity: Izumi is a rare name outside of Japan, while it seems to be gaining traction within Japanese families.
Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Jigme

Jigme is a very unique male name, not usually heard outside of Asia. It is mostly spoken in Bhutan, as well as in India, Nepal, Malaysia, and Japan. A strong name that also means “fear not” in Tibetan.

  • Origin: Japanese, Tibetan
  • Meaning: Power
  • Pronunciation: jig-mee
  • Variations: Jigmet, Jigmee, Jigmed, Jigmé
  • Namesakes: Jigme Lingpa, a Tibetan Buddist who was a tertön of the Nyingma lineage, and discovered ancient hidden texts. Jigme Singye Wangchuck, the King of Bhutan from 1972 until his abdication in 2006.
  • Popularity: Jigme has decreased considerably on popularity charts.
Vintage, Unique, Cool

Jiro

Jiro could make a wonderfully strong and character-filled name for a baby boy. Even better if you happen to be having your second son!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Second son
  • Pronunciation: jee-roh
  • Variations: Jeero, Jearo, Jairo, Jiroo, Jirou
  • Namesakes: Jiro Wang, a Taiwanese singer, and actor. Jiro Yoshihara, a Japanese painter, art educator, and businessman
  • Popularity: Jiro was a more popular name during the early 1900s and is now a very rare name.
Classic
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Jomei

Jomei perfectly captures the majestic beauty of Japanese culture. What makes this name equally attractive is that it’s easy to spell and pronounce. Jomei also speaks of spreading goodness and virtue.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Spreading light
  • Pronunciation: joh-may
  • Variations: Joimei, Joumei, Joemei, Jomeio, Jommei
  • Namesakes: Emperor Jomei, personally known as Prince Tamura, was the 34th emperor of Japan during the 600s.
  • Popularity: Jomei was once a more popular name and has since dropped off the popularity charts.
Classic, Heroic

Kamenosuke

If uniqueness is what you’re looking for in a boy’s name, then Kamenosuke offers loads! This charming name is inspired by a series of ancient Japanese art pieces known as Oume and Kumenosuke from the early 1800s. The famous art depicts two lovers and is often found on stationary or interior decor.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Turtle’s helper
  • Pronunciation: kah-MEN-o-soo-keh
  • Variations: Kamanosuke, Kamonosuke, Kaminosuke, Kumenosuke
Unusual, Vintage

Keitaro

What a beautiful name for your new little boy about to bring so much joy into your life. As a gorgeous Japanese male name, Keitaro speaks of divine favor and protection.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Blessed
  • Pronunciation: kay-tah-ROH
  • Variations: Keitarou, Keitaroh, Kitaro, Kaitaro, Koitaro
  • Namesakes: Keitaro Takahashi, a Japanese manga artist. Keitaro Harada, a Japanese conductor, music, and artistic director from the Savannah Philharmonic.
  • Popularity: Keitaro is a very rare Japanese boy name.
Modern, Cool

Kenji

In Japanese, “ji” means “two” or “second,” making this an adorable name for a second son in the family. Kenji, therefore, translates to “intelligent second son.” Families also like to use Kenjiro as another lovely version with the same meaning.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Healthy, strong, study, sharpen
  • Pronunciation: KEN-jee
  • Variations: Kennji, Kenjji, Keanji, Khenji, Kenjei
  • Namesakes: Kenji Daimanazuru, a Japanese sumo wrestler. Kenji Fujinaka, a Japanese handball player. Kenji Horikawa, a Japanese anime producer.
  • Popularity: After being a less common name, Kenji is starting to become a pretty popular name again, reaching position #904 in 2020.
Popular, Cute

Kin

Kin is used as both a first name and surname in Japanese families. There are several locations using this cool name, such as Kin Okinawa, a town located in the Kunigami District in Japan. A Japanese cultural phenomenon is also known to use the name, such as Kin no unko, or “golden poo,” meaning “good luck.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Golden
  • Variations: Kien, Kuin, Kion, Kinn, Kihn
  • Popularity: Since being a very rare name, Kin is starting to become a fairly popular name.
Powerful, Classic

Kiyoshi

If you’re looking for a cute name, then Kiyoshi strongly captures the kawaii culture. Different kanji writings also give the meanings of “clear,” “shining,” “pure,” or “quiet” for this name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Quiet child
  • Pronunciation: kee-YOH-shee
  • Variations: Kiyoshie, Kiyoshy, Kiyoshey, Kiyoshee, Kiyoshea
  • Namesakes: Kiyoshi Tanimoto, a Japanese Methodist minister famously known for his work with the Hiroshima Maidens. Kiyoshi Koishi, a Japanese photographer. Kiyoshi Kuromiya, a Japanese-American author, civil rights, and anti-war activist.
  • Popularity: Kiyoshi used to be more popular in the early 1900s and has since become less common among Japanese boy names.
Traditional, Cute

Kyo

Now here’s a trendy Japanese boy’s name! It may be a bit more on the popular side due to the many fictional characters which bear this name. This includes characters such as Kyo Sohma in the Fruits Basket anime and manga series and Kyo Kusanagi from King of Fighters. Kyo can also mean “capital” or “apricot.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Cooperation, Village
  • Pronunciation: kee-yoh
  • Variations: Kyoo, Khyo, Kyoa, Kyho, Kyoy
  • Popularity: Kyo is gradually increasing on name popularity charts.
Cute, Vintage

Makkou

Makkou is a very rare and unique male Japanese name. It sure has a lovely ring to it, as you say it, with some stunning and inspiring meanings. Makkou speaks of selfless bravery and truthfulness – wonderful qualities many parents would want for their new son!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: True, sword, help of god
  • Pronunciation: mak-kuh
  • Variations: Makku, Makko, Makou, Makkho
Unique, Powerful, Classic

Masahiro

Here is a name you might just hear a bit more across the world. However, Masahiro still remains a fairly rare name outside Japan. Masahiro can also mean “wide” or “ocean.” This name is perfect for parents who may want to foster a more inquisitive mind in the life of their son.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Broadminded
  • Pronunciation: mah-sah-hiro
  • Variations: Massahiro, Mashahiro, Maasahiro, Masahira, Masahyro
  • Namesakes: Masahiro Andoh, a Japanese guitarist, and composer. Masahiro Chono, an American-Japanese wrestler. Masahiro Imamura, a Japanese politician.
  • Popularity: Masahiro is a common Japanese boy name.
Modern, Unusual

Masaki

Masaki is a special name for a handsome little boy. It is also used in Italian, where it means “twin.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Ten thousand, fortune
  • Pronunciation: mah-sah-kee
  • Variations: Malaki, Maleki, Maesaki, Massaki, Masaaki, Mhasaki
  • Namesakes: Masaki Suda, a Japanese actor, and singer. Masaki Sumitani, a Japanese comedian and retired professional wrestler.
  • Popularity: After being slightly more popular, Masaki has become a much less common name today.
Classic
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Michio

Michio offers loads of Japanese charm. A strong name bringing the powerful ancient Japanese warriors to mind. It may also sound a bit on the badass side of things if that’s what you’re after.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Man with strength of three thousand
  • Pronunciation: mi-chi-oo
  • Variations: Michi, Michijo, Michiho, Mitchio
  • Namesakes: Michio Suzuki, a Japanese businessman, and inventor who founded the Suzuki Motor Corporation.
  • Popularity: Michio is one of the slightly more popular Japanese boy names. However, it remains an uncommon name in other parts of the world.
Powerful, Heroic

Mitsuru

Mitsuru could make a wonderful choice for a boy name. Perhaps something a little more unique and out of the ordinary from our list of Japanese boy names.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Be full
  • Pronunciation: mit-su-ruh
  • Variations: Mitsurui, Mutsuru, Mitzuru, Mitsuiru
  • Namesakes: Mitsuru Hotta, a Japanese botanist. Mitsuru Matsumura, a Japanese figure skater. Mitsuru Nakamura, a Japanese artist, and poet.
  • Popularity: Mitsuru is considered a very rare boy name.
Traditional

Naoko

Naoko can have a variety of unique meanings, depending on the arrangement of kanji characters you use. It can also mean “obedient child,” “esteemed child,” “Nara,” or “cord.” Nara is one of the 47 prefectures or administrative districts in Japan.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Straight, honest
  • Pronunciation: NAH-aw-koh
  • Variations: Natsoo, Natsou, Nahoko, Nayoko
  • Namesakes: Naoko Fukatsu, a Japanese professional table tennis player. Naoko Mori, a Japanese actress.
  • Popularity: Naoko is a fairly common Japanese name.
Traditional, Heroic

Natsu

Natsu is a gorgeously unique name for a boy. Another version of the name, Natsuo, means “birth of summer.” This would make a stunning name for your handsome new boy if he happens to be born in summer. Natsu captures the beautiful shifting of the earth’s seasons.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Born in summer
  • Variations: Natsui, Nattsu, Nathsu, Natsuh
  • Namesakes: Natsu Dragneel, the main character in the Japanese anime and manga Fairy Tail series.
  • Popularity: Natsu is starting to increase considerably in popularity while still remaining a rare name.
Cool, Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Nobu

Traditionally, Nobu was a Japanese name of the Lozi tribe, which meant “a child born into a humble family.” You may have heard of the popular restaurant and hotel chain, “Nobu,” named after chef Nobu Matsuhisa? He is known for his delicate blend of Japanese dishes with Peruvian ingredients. A name that may get the mouth-watering a bit!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Prolong, stretch
  • Variations: Nobui, Nobou, Nobeu
  • Namesakes: Nobu Matsuhisa, or personally known as Nobuyuki, is a Japanese celebrity chef and restaurateur.
  • Popularity: Nobu is a very unique boy name.
Traditional

Nori

If you can’t resist the exquisite taste of Sushi, then Nori could be the perfect name for you! Nori is a well-known dried, edible seaweed from a red algae species, often used for wrapping sushi rolls or onigiri (rice balls). This certainly sounds like a stylish and captivating name for parents who fancy Japanese cuisine.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Belief
  • Pronunciation: noh-ree
  • Variations: Norio, Nóri, Norio, Norie, Noris
  • Namesakes: Nori, or personally known as Norichika Aoki, is a Japanese professional baseball outfielder for the Tokyo Yakult Swallows.
  • Popularity: Nori has fluctuated considerably in popularity and is starting to become a slightly more popular name.
Cool, Inspiring

Noriyuki

Noriyuki can easily be shortened to Nori or Yuki. Another lovely version, Naoyuki, means “truth” and “happiness.” This exquisite masculine name captures how your little bundle will bring so much love and laughter into your life.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Filled with happiness
  • Pronunciation: noh-ree-yu-kee
  • Variations: Noriyuyki, Noriyukiei, Noriyoki, Noriukei
  • Namesakes: Noriyuki Haga, a Japanese motorcycle racer. Noriyuki Asakura, a Japanese musician. Noriyuki Sato, a Japanese fencer.
  • Popularity: Noriyuki is a very rare name, not listed on any popularity charts.
Classic, Inspiring

Oki

Oki is a short, catchy Japanese boy name. It is commonly used in Japan and Indonesia. A wonderful name for parents who also love the majestic beauty and endless expanse of the ocean.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Ocean centered
  • Pronunciation: OH-kee
  • Variations: Okee, Okey, Okie, Oky, Oke
  • Namesakes: Oki Kano is a Japanese musician of Ainu ancestry, indigenous to Northern Japan.
  • Popularity: Oki does not appear on any popularity charts.
Nature-loving, Vintage

Osakwe

What an attractive meaning behind a name! Osakwe could be a wonderful choice for parents hoping to find a more unusual Japanese name. This name is also a fairly common surname in Japan.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Having a favorable destiny
  • Pronunciation: O-sah-kweh
  • Variations: Osakwi, Osakwie, Osakwy, Osakwey, Osakwee, Osakwea
Inspiring, Traditional

Osayaba

Osayaba is an exquisite name, hardly heard across the world today. It can also mean “the lord forgives” in Japanese. An inspiring meaning for a name, which you will also come across in Nigeria.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: A great thinker
  • Pronunciation: oh-sa-yah-bah
  • Variations: Osayba, Oayaba, Ousayba
Unusual, Vintage
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Ozuru

Ozuru is an extraordinary name for a special little boy. It might even bring those elegant storks to mind, believed to deliver beautiful newborns straight to a mother’s doorstep. Now wouldn’t that be convenient? This charming myth is believed to originate from ancient Greece, where storks typically symbolize purity and new beginnings.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Stork
  • Pronunciation: oh-zoo-roo
  • Variations: Ozuro, Ozuroo
Nature-loving, Unusual

Pao

Pao could make a pleasant name for your sweet little boy. The Pao River features as a tributary of the Chi River in Thailand. The Pa’O people native to Burma also happen to go by a slightly different version of the name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Calm, harmony, peace, serenity
  • Pronunciation: phaw
  • Variations: Paoi, Paeo, Paho, Paou
  • Namesakes: Pao Ching-yen, also known as Bao Jingyan, was a Chinese, Taoist, and liberation philosopher who lived during the early 4th Century C.E. Yih-Ho Michael Pao, an American entrepreneur, and hydro-engineer.
  • Popularity: Pao has fluctuated in popularity over the years and is now considered a very uncommon name.
Classic, Powerful

Raiden

Raiden is a strong, badass name for a boy. In Japanese mythology, Raiden or Raijin, also known as Kaminari-sama, is the god of lightning, thunder, and storms. Raiden is often depicted as the protector of Japanese shrines and temples.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Thundergod, from the rye hill
  • Pronunciation: RAY-den
  • Variations: Raidyn, Raeden, Raedon, Raedyn, Raidin
  • Namesakes: Raiden Tameemon, a Japanese sumo wrestler.
  • Popularity: Raiden has kept growing in popularity since 1993 and is now a pretty popular name, reaching position #403 in 2020.
Powerful, Dark

Reizo

Reizo may be perfect for parents wanting a more unique and snazzy Japanese boy name. This name also offers a wide range of attractive meanings. Who wouldn’t want to call their good-looking new son “well-groomed?”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Law, cool, calm, well-groomed
  • Pronunciation: rei-zoh
  • Variations: Reizou, Rezo, Rizo, Raizo
  • Namesakes: Reizo Koike was a professional Japanese swimmer who specialized in the 200m breaststroke. Reizo Fukuhara, a Japanese football player.
  • Popularity: Reizo is starting to become more popular but still remains a rare name.
Inspiring, Traditional

Ren

Ren may be a short name, but its deep and charming meaning certainly makes up for its tiny stature. Ren is the name of several famous people across the world, as well as the first name of many fictional characters in Japanese video games and films.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Lotus, dream, love
  • Variations: Renee, Rena, Rene, Ranae
  • Namesakes: Ren Ozawa, a Japanese actor. Ren Sato, a Japanese politician. Ren, personally known as Choi Min-Gi is a South Korean singer, actor, and television personality.
  • Popularity: Ren has gained major traction over the years and is now a pretty popular name.
Heroic, Free-spirited

Rinji

Rinji is a very special gem among our Japanese boy names. Hearing it makes you want to wander through a lush and majestic Japanese cedar forest. Or marvel at the rare botanical artistry of the Daisugi trees. Now wouldn’t that be lovely?

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Peaceful forest
  • Pronunciation: rin-jee
  • Variations: Rinjy, Rinjey, Rinjee, Rinjea, Rinjai
Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Ryu

Ryu is an unusual and strong male name, occurring mostly in Japan and Singapore. Ryu is commonly used for naming leading fictional characters, such as from the Breath of Fire and Street Fighter video game series. Japanese dragons are also rich in meaning and are typically associated with water deities. Ryu could make a dashing name for your very own little brave warrior.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Dragon
  • Pronunciation: ree-ooh
  • Variations: Ryuu, Ryuyu, Ryuju, Ruyu, Riuu, Ryou, Reyu
  • Namesakes: Ryu Fujisaki, a Japanese manga artist. Ryu Matsumoto, a Japanese politician.
  • Popularity: Ryu has fluctuated in popularity over time and is now a much less common name.
Powerful, Dark

Sakichi

Sakichi could make a stunning name for your beautiful boy. A very unique name mainly found only in Japan. Perhaps a perfect male Japanese name if you want to encourage a servant-heart in the life of your new boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Luck, help someone
  • Pronunciation: sah-kee-ti
  • Variations: Sakuichi, Saikichi, Sakaichi, Shakichi
  • Namesakes: Sakichi Sato, a Japanese actor, film director, and screenwriter. Sakichi Toyoda, a Japanese inventor, and businessman.
Unique, Traditional

Sanjiro

Sanjiro carries an inspiring meaning for a boy’s name. The name may also bring Sanjuro to mind – a unique hybrid of martial arts, which was famously portrayed in the iconic film Akira Kurosawa. Sanjiro speaks of heroic deeds and perhaps a dash of badass too!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Praise, admirable
  • Pronunciation: sahn-jee-roh
  • Variations: Senjiro, Sanjuro, Sanhiro, Sonjiro, Sanjira, Sanjyro
Inspiring, Cool

Seiko

Seiko makes an enchanting name for a charming little boy. Of course, there’s the world-famous Japanese company Seiko, which manufactures watches, clocks, electronic devices, jewelry, and optical products. A delightful, funky name to perhaps add to your list of top names.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Force, truth
  • Pronunciation: SAY-koh
  • Variations: Seikoh, Seikho, Seikoo, Seyiko
  • Namesakes: Seiko Matsuda is a Japanese pop singer and songwriter, also known as Noriko Kamachi. Seiko Hashimoto is a Japanese politician, track cyclist, and former speed skater.
  • Popularity: As an uncommon name, Seiko is starting to gradually grow in popularity.
Heroic, Classic
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Shikamaru

Shikamaru is a more common male Japanese name in Japan and Russia. Some might know the popular fictional character, Shikamaru Nara, created for the manga and anime Japanese franchise, Naruto. Shikamaru features as part of a ninja team with an easy-going nature. Perhaps a fun name, which can easily be shortened to Shika.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: As a deer
  • Pronunciation: shi-kah-mah-ru
  • Variations: Shikamarru, Shikkamaru, Sikamaru
Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Shion

Shion is an endearing name for a darling boy. It can also mean “true warmth.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Beautiful star, living poetry
  • Pronunciation: shee-awn
  • Variations: Shiong, Shijon, Shioon, Shionn
  • Namesakes: Shion Homma is a Japanese footballer. Shion Kokubun is a Japanese figure skater. Shion Miyawaki is a Japanese pop singer under the Rhythm Zone label.
  • Popularity: Shion is starting to show a remarkable increase in popularity.
Inspiring, Free-spirited

Shohei

Shohei could be a super name for your brand new baby boy, offering a great deal of Japanese Kawaii. This name is most common in Japan, Singapore, and China.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Furthermore, respect
  • Pronunciation: sho-hee
  • Variations: Shôhei, Shoheie, Shohhei, Shoei, Sohei
  • Namesakes: Shohei Ohtani, nicknamed Shotime, is a Japanese professional baseball player for the Los Angeles Angels. Shohei Hashimoto, a Japanese actor, television personality, and voice actor.
  • Popularity: Shohei is a very rare name that has disappeared off the popularity charts.
Vintage

Shunpei

Shunpei is a more popular boy name in China and Japan while remaining very rare across the rest of the world. Shunpei is a delightful and unique name, helping us to remember and cherish the beautiful moments in life.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Moment, instantly smooth
  • Pronunciation: shun-pah
  • Variations: Shinpei, Shinpeie, Shumpei
  • Namesakes: Shunpei Hashioka, a Japanese boxer. Shunpei Mizuno, a Japanese writer. Shunpei Ueyama, a Japanese philosopher.
Classic, Cool

Tadashi

Tadashi is rich in meaning, speaking of faithfulness and virtue. Many parents in other countries are known for taking a liking to this attractive name. An impactful meaning for parents who value honesty and integrity.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Faithful, proper history
  • Pronunciation: tah-dah-shee
  • Variations: Tadashio, Tadashii, Tadashie
  • Namesakes: Tadashi Hayashi, a Japanese basketball coach. Tadashi Mihara, a Japanese boxer. Tadashi Honda, a Japanese swimmer.
  • Popularity: Tadashi decreased in popularity and is now growing considerably as a popular Japanese boy name.
Classic

Takeo

Nothing quite beats the serenity and character of a Japanese Zen garden, with tall, stylish bamboo to pave the way. If you happen to love the idea of a Japanese outdoor wonderland, then Takeo could make a wonderful name choice. Many strong thinkers have also had this name over history. In astronomy, the Hatanaka crater on the Moon is named after a Japanese radio astronomer, Takeo Hatanaka.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Strong like bamboo
  • Pronunciation: tah-kay-OH
  • Variations: Takyo, Takeao, Takeho
  • Namesakes: Takeo Doi, a Japanese aircraft designer. Takeo Fukuda, a Japanese politician. Takeo Yoshikawa, who was a Japanese spy in Hawaii before the attack on Pearl Harbour.
  • Popularity: Takeo used to be a slightly more popular Japanese name and has since become a much rarer name.
Nature-loving, Powerful, Free-spirited

Tanak

Tanak is a special and intriguing Japanese boy name. Not much is known about this name, making it all the more mysterious. If you perhaps take a liking to Tanak, then you know your son will have a very unique name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Dweller
  • Pronunciation: tah-nak
  • Variations: Tainak, Tanake, Tannak, Taanak
Cute, Classic, Unusual

Toshiro

Toshiro may be just the unique Japanese name you’re looking for! This lovely name could be shortened to a trendy-sounding Shiro. Different kanji variations of the name can mean “agile son,” “advantage,” and “bright.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Talented, intelligent
  • Pronunciation: toh-shee-roh
  • Variations: Toshihiro, Toshirou, Toshiroh, Tashiro
  • Namesakes: Tashiro Yabuki, a Japanese music composer. Toshiro Nomura, a Japanese astronomer. Toshiro Kandagawa, a Japanese chef.
  • Popularity: Toshiro has fluctuated in popularity and is starting to gain more traction now.
Inspiring, Unique

Tsubasa

Tsubasa is certainly a very unique-sounding name, offering loads of Japanese charm and culture. This interesting name is fairly common in Japan and Thailand.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Wings
  • Pronunciation: t-suh-bah-sah
  • Variations: Tsubasha, Tsubasab, Tsubase, Tsubaseb
  • Namesakes: Tsubasa Hasegawa, a Japanese speed skater. Tsubasa Kitatsuru, a Japanese professional cyclist. Tsubasa Sasaki, a Japanese slalom canoeist.
Free-spirited, Heroic, Vintage

Tsuki

Tsuki can have a variety of unique meanings in Japanese. In Okinawan martial arts, Tsuki is derived from the Japanese verb “tsuku,” which means “to thrust.” A compound word referring to a variety of thrusting techniques or punches. Tsuki can also mean “moon,” “bloom,” or “hope,” and is also more popular as a girl’s name.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Moon
  • Pronunciation: t-suh-kee
  • Variations: Tsukii, Tsueki, Tsukie, Tsukei
  • Namesakes: Tsuki Amano, a Japanese singer known for singing the ending themes to several video game series.
  • Popularity: Tsuki is a very rare name, not listed on any popularity charts.
Classic
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Udo

Udo is an adorable name for a baby boy. As a short name, it sure has a way of capturing your attention. Udo is also very common in Germany, where it means “universal ruler.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Ginseng plant
  • Pronunciation: uu-do
  • Variations: Udho, Udoo, Udoi, Udoh
  • Namesakes: Udo Dirkschneider, a German singer and songwriter. Udo Keppler, an American cartoonist. Udo Suzuki, a Japanese musician, and comedian.
Nature-loving, Unusual

Usagi

Usagi perfectly represents the kawaii culture if you’re wanting an enchanting male name. It also means “rabbit of the moon” and is commonly used in warabe uta – a traditional term for Japanese songs or nursery rhymes.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Bunny
  • Pronunciation: uh-sah-gee
  • Variations: Usagie, Usagy, Usagey, Usagee
  • Popularity: Usagi is considered a very rare name, not listed on any popularity charts.
Unusual, Cute, Nature-loving

Usaki

Usaki is a very unique Japanese name, also fairly common in India. An endearing name for a little boy about to have the world as his oyster. A slightly different version of the name features in a popular manga series called Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: World, bloom
  • Variations: Ushaki, Uzaki, Usiaki, Usakis, Husaki
Free-spirited, Cute

Ushio

Ushio sounds like a majestic ocean wave, lapping against the shore. This trendy name is often used for naming restaurants or Japanese fictional characters. You will also come across it in history books, where it was the name given to two Japanese warships in the early 1900s.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Tide
  • Variations: Ishio, Ushiho, Ushi
  • Popularity: Ushio is considered a very rare male Japanese name.
Cool, Traditional

Wabushi

Wabushi makes for an interesting name, offering another very different meaning. When spelled with other kanji characters, it can also mean “ferocious.” So if you happen to like badass names, Wabushi could definitely be added to the shortlist!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Calm, harmony, peace, serenity
  • Pronunciation: wah-buh-shee
  • Variations: Wabusha, Waibusi, Wabuisi, Washube
  • Popularity: Wabushi is a very rare male Japanese name.
Inspiring, Cool, Classic

Wakatoshi

Wakatoshi is the name of a popular fictional character, Wakatoshi Ushijima, from the Powerful Opponents manga series. A very unique and adorable name for a young boy, which could also be shortened to Toshi.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Young, interest
  • Pronunciation: wah-kah-to-see
  • Variations: Wakatasi
Unusual, Inspiring

Waku

Waku could make a lovely name for a beautiful boy about to enter the world. This loveable male Japanese name scores very high on cuteness and is likely to keep you smiling forever. Or in other more traditional Japanese terms, “kao hayishi,” which directly translates to “keeping one’s face aglow.” Waku certainly speaks of joy and glorious new beginnings in life.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Spring
  • Variations: Wakhu, Wakou, Waiku, Wahku
Classic, Nature-loving, Free-spirited

Washi

Washi is a delightful name, offering a great deal of authenticity. It comes from the traditional Japanese paper, Washi, which is processed by hand and used in origami, shoda, and ukiyo-e. These papers are made from the inner bark of the gampi tree, the paper mulberry, and the mitsumata shrub. A sweet name such as Washi may just keep your fingers crafting for days!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Eagle
  • Pronunciation: WAH-shee
  • Variations: Washee, Washie, Washy
Nature-loving, Powerful, Free-spirited

Wataru

Now, here is one of the more fascinating-sounding Japanese boy names. Wataru could make a lovely name choice for your beloved son – particularly for parents who love geography or getting lost in world maps from time to time!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Navigation
  • Pronunciation: wah-tah-ruu
  • Variations: Watarui, Wataruu, Wataaru
  • Namesakes: Wataru Ishijima, a Japanese paleontologist and geologist. Wataru Kamimura, a Japanese shogi player. Wataru Yoshikawa, a Japanese motorcycle rider.
  • Popularity: Wataru is a rare name, which is slightly more popular today.
Vintage, Cool

Yasahiro

Yasahiro is an exquisite Japanese name, which can also mean “wise.” This very rare name could be perfect for parents who wish peace and a wise heart for their new son.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: One who is peaceful and calm
  • Pronunciation: yah-sahi-roh
  • Variations: Yasuhiro
Classic, Unusual
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Yoki

Yoki could make a delightful name for your new darling. While it’s common in Japan and Indonesia, you will also discover Native Americans using the name. In America, Yoki means “rain” or “bluebird” and is commonly used as a girl’s name. Yoki is also the Canadian term for a Chinese jump rope.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Bright, given
  • Variations: Yoko, Yoaki, Yokii, Yokei, Yôki
Unique, Traditional

Yoshi

Yoshi may be just the unique Japanese name you’re looking for! Yoshi can also mean “respected” and “the best.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Quiet, ceremony
  • Variations: Yoshee, Yoshie, Yoshee, Yoshii, Yoshio, Yoshy
  • Namesakes: Yoshi Tatsu is a Japanese professional wrestler, a former boxer, and a mixed martial artist. Yoshi Sudarso, an American actor, model, and stuntman.
  • Popularity: Yoshi is starting to increase in popularity but still remains a rare name.
Classic, Inspiring

Yuki

Yuki is fast becoming a very trendy Japanese boy name across the world. Yūki also happens to be a Japanese samurai kin group. When visiting Japan, you may also come across some places with this cute name. Such as a town called Yuki in the Jinseki District in Hiroshima. Or the city Yūki on Honshu island.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Gentle hope
  • Pronunciation: yuh-kee
  • Variations: Yuki, Yuukei, Yūki, Yuuka, Yuyukio
  • Namesakes: Yuki Ebihara, a Japanese javelin thrower. Yuki Kashiwagi, a Japanese idol and singer. Yuki Kobayashi, a Japanese cross-country skier.
Inspiring, Powerful, Cute

Yukinari

Yukinari could make an appealing name for your new baby boy. Japanese calligrapher Fujiwara no Yukinari, who lived during the Heian period in Japan, also bore the name. His memorable work is listed as one of the outstanding Three Brush Traces.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Fortune, momentum
  • Pronunciation: yu-kee-nah-ree
  • Variations: Yukinori, Yokinari, Yukanari, Ukinari
  • Namesakes: Yukinari Sugawara, a Japanese professional footballer. Yukinari Tamura, a Japanese mixed martial artist.
  • Popularity: Yukinari is a very rare name, not appearing on any popularity charts.
Vintage, Unique

Yuri

Yuri is a fairly common name in Japan and other parts of Asia. It can also mean “abundant,” “excellent,” or “courage.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Farmer, Lily
  • Pronunciation: YER-ee
  • Variations: Yuris, Yuriko, Yuriyo, Yury
  • Namesakes: Yuri Ichii, a Japanese idol, and rapper. Yuri Kasahara, a Japanese opera singer. Yuri Nagai, a Japanese field hockey player.
Nature-loving, Cool, Modern

Yuudai

Yuudai oozes Japanese character and charm. This unusual and interesting name is also used for a fictional manga character, Yuudai Haikyuu. Yuudai also speaks of a dashing and brave hero.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: One who is a great hero
  • Variations: Yudai, Yudae, Yuuday, Yuday, Yuuda
  • Namesakes: Yuudai Kamei, is a Japanese motorcycle racer.
Powerful, Inspiring, Traditional

Zen

Zen sure sounds like a cool, catchy name for an adorable boy. This unique name is often heard in Myanmar, Indonesia, China, Hong Kong, and Japan. Zen is a religious term originating from China during the Tang dynasty and is the name for the School of Mahayana Buddhism. Zen Buddhism later spread into Japan, where it is now known as Japanese Zen.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Living, religious
  • Variations: Zena, Zenn, Zhen, Zhenn
  • Popularity: Zen has shown a steady increase in popularity while still remaining a rare name.
Modern, Vintage, Free-spirited

Zenjirou

Zenjirou could make a perfect name for your very own hero! Sometimes parents leave the “u” off, which changes the meaning to “second-born son.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Samurai
  • Pronunciation: zeh-jee-rou
  • Variations: Zenjiro, Senjiro, Genjiro
Heroic, Powerful, Dark

Zenshi

Zenshi offers an attractive meaning for our male Japanese names. It sounds like a perfect name for a strong warrior, or perhaps a cute little badass boy.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Good, aspire
  • Pronunciation: zen-shee
  • Variations: Zenshio, Zenshei, Genshi
  • Namesakes: Zenshi, the professional name for a South American luchador wrestler.
Inspiring, Heroic, Powerful

Zentaro

What a gorgeous name for your new little human about to enter this world. If you’re looking for a name to honor your firstborn son, then Zentaro could be a stunning choice. Out of all our Japanese boy names, Zentaro may be our beautiful cherry on top!

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Firstborn son
  • Variations: Sentaro, Gentaro, Zentara
  • Namesakes: Zentaro Watanabe, a Japanese musician and music producer. Zentaro Kamei, a Japanese politician from the Liberal Democratic Party.
Cute, Traditional
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About the Author

Sarah-Lynn Robertson

Sarah-Lynn Robertson is a freelance writer from the sunny and colorful country of South Africa. She writes for various websites and blogs on a wide range of topics and also dabbles in some copywriting from time to time. As a qualified environmental researcher, Sarah found she loved freelance writing way more interesting than sifting through endless spreadsheets of data for days on end. When she isn’t writing, Sarah loves reading, running, camping, and fishing with her husband, and taking her fluffy, four-legged friend Chester for a stroll or two.
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