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Ask Baby Names

Baby name advice from Jennifer Moss, founder of BabyNames.com. Have a question for Jennifer? E-mail it to question@babynames.com

Wynn or Winston? Can I use both?

Hi Jennifer!

I discovered your site back when I was pregnant with my oldest (he’s almost 6) and have been using and recommending it ever since.

We are expecting our third baby. I LOVE the name Wynn, and my husband likes Winston. We compromised and will use Winston but call him Wynn. But here’s my question: Would it be too confusing to go from Winston to Wynn (spelling wise)? I like the spelling of both and don’t want to change the spelling of either. (Let’s just be honest: Wynnston, Wynston, Winnston, Winn, Wyn, and Win look stupid to me.) What do you think?

Thanks so much!

There are 2 Winstons in the popular TV show, New Girl

Hi Katie,

Thanks for writing and recommending our site! My gut reaction to your question is yes, I do think it would be too confusing to go from Winston as a given name to the Wynn spelling as a nickname, since that’s not the standard.

If you were asking me if you should use one or the other, I would choose Wynn first and foremost. I would avoid Winston for several reasons: 1) it is a popular brand of cigarette, 2) it’s a character (actually two) on the popular TV show New Girl. Although they’re good, kind, quirky characters, the name would be constantly associated with that. And 3) I see your surname from your email and Wynn has a better rhythm as a full first-last name combo than Winston.

Say it aloud in our introduction test: “Hello, my name is Winston C*****.” or “Hello, my name is Wynn C*****.” Which sounds the best to you?

Of course, in the end it’s your decision.