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Zoey Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

Learn about the name Zoey including the meaning, gender, origin, popularity, and more.

Zoey Overview

  • Meaning: Zoey means “life” and could also be translated as “to give life” or “to breathe.”
  • Gender: Zoey is a girl’s name.
  • Origin: Zoey comes from the Greek word “zoi.” It may have possibly been a translation of the biblical figure Eve.
  • Pronunciation: “zoh-ee.”
  • Popularity: Zoey is a popular choice in the United States and ranked 38th for newborn girls in 2021.
  • Nicknames: Zozo, Zoe, Zo.
  • Variations: Zara (Arabic/Hebrew), Zeva (Greek) Zoe (Greek), Zoie (Greek), Zoë (Greek).
  • Namesakes: Zoey Deutch (American actress), Zoey Goralski (American soccer player).

What Does Zoey Mean?

Zoey is a variation of the long-established, well-known, and popular name Zoe. As with that version, Zoey means “life.” Since its roots are partly in the biblical girl name Eve, it can also be translated as “to give life” or “to breathe” (1).

What Is the Origin of the Name Zoey?

Zoey has a Greek origin, coming from the word “zoi,” meaning “life.” One possible theory is that the Jewish community in ancient Alexandria, Egypt translated Eve (Chavah in Hebrew) into Greek, resulting in the Hellenized Zoe.

Despite potentially emerging in Judaism, this name has long been popular amongst Christians due to its association with Saint Zoe of Rome and Saint Zoe of Pamphylia (2).

Moreover, other significant figures became associated with the name, such as the Byzantine empresses Zoë Porphyrogenita and Zoe Karbonopsina. That further consolidated its prominence within early Christianity.

How Popular Is the Name Zoey?

The name Zoey first appeared in 1995 among the top 1,000 names in the United States. Zoey gained further recognition in 2000, reaching the top 500 girl names. Then, in 2008, Zoey broke into the top 100 and ranked 38th in 2021 for newborn girls (3).

How Do I Pronounce Zoey?

You pronounce Zoey with two syllables, with the typical pronunciation being “zoh-ee.”

The name Zoey can have spelling variations. For example, with Greek spelling, Zoey is pronounced as “zoh-eh” and spelled as “Zoi.”

Is Zoey a Boy or Girl Name?

Zoey is a girl’s name and there is no record of it being used for boys.

Variations of Zoey

There are several variations of Zoey, including names that look and sound similar, while others are unique. If you’re a fan of Zoey, check out the following list for further inspiration:

  • Zara (Arabic/Hebrew)
  • Zelda (German)
  • Zeva (Greek)
  • Zinnia (Latin)
  • Zoe (Greek)
  • Zoie (Greek)
  • Zowie (Hebrew)
  • Zoë (Greek)

Nicknames for Zoey

You can give any nickname to your child. But, there are a few common nicknames for Zoey that make a cute and goofy approach to your baby girl’s name:

  • Zo
  • Zooey
  • Zoski
  • Zozo

Similar Names to Zoey

If you like Zoey, but don’t think it’s the right name for your baby, these names have a similar quality. Some start with the memorable “Z,” while others have a comparable sound to Zoey:

  • Joey
  • Joleigh
  • Jolie
  • Josey
  • Rosy
  • Sophie
  • Zach
  • Zadie
  • Zeke
  • Zelie
  • Zofia
  • Zola
  • Zosie
  • Zuri

Middle Names for Zoey

Even though some parents don’t give their child a middle name, the following names sound great with Zoey:

Sibling Names for Zoey

Do you already have a Zoey at home and want to know what names would work well with your little girl? Or are you expecting twins? The below names are just a few possibilities for a brother or sister to Zoey:

For a brother:

For a sister:

Famous People Named Zoey

Plenty of celebrities name their children Zoey, as seen below. Models, actresses, singers, and athletes have this name with various spelling variations on Zoey, too:

  • Zoey Dean: Pen name for American authors of “The A-List” series.
  • Zooey Deschanel: American actress, model, and singer.
  • Zoey Francis Thompson Deutch: American actress.
  • Zoey Goralski: American soccer player.
  • Zoey Ivory: Dutch model.
  • Zoey Stark: American wrestler in the WWE.

Zoey in Popular Culture

Over the last ten years, Zoey has become increasingly prominent in movies, TV shows, and even video games! Here are just a few well-known and appreciated Zoeys in popular culture:

  • Zoey: Character in the “Pokemon” series.
  • Zoey Barkow: Character in the TV show “Nurse Jackie.”
  • Zoey Bartlet: Character in the show “The West Wing.”
  • Zoey Brooks: The main character in the TV show “Zoey 101.”
  • Zoey Howzer: Character in the Disney show “The Proud Family.”
  • Zoey Johnson: Character in the TV show “Black, ish.”
  • Zoey Pierson: Character in the TV show “How I Met Your Mother.”
  • Zoey Redbird: Book character in “House of Night.”
  • Zoey Sandin: Character in the movie “The Purge.”
  • Zoey Woodbine: Character in the TV show “Cybill.”

Zoey FAQs

This section will answer common questions regarding this popular girl’s name.

Is Zoey Popular Due to Famous Celebrities?

While there is no definitive answer to this question, Zoey’s rise up the baby name charts has corresponded with prominent bearers of the name. For instance, it first surged through the rankings when celebrity couple Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet named their daughter Zoe in 1989.

Likewise, “Zoey 101” dominated Nickelodeon for three years while “New Girl” brought Zooey Deschanel into mainstream consciousness. During this period, the name reached a high of 20 in the top 1000 choices for girls.

What Is the Personality Type of Zoey?

People with the name Zoey tend to be extroverted, perceiving, and natural learners. They’re fun to be around and want to learn with hands-on experience.

Zoeys are compassionate, creative, and great at making friends. They seek ways to improve things they don’t like. They’re naturally optimistic and good at coming up with ideas.

Someone named Zoey is loyal, caring, and enjoys helping others. They get along with people of all ages and enjoy discussing their hobbies.

Does Zoey Have Any Associated Colors?

As with all names, Zoey has acquired color connections with violet, red, and ruby. If you’re planning on painting a nursery or getting baby toys, this knowledge can be a fun way to give an interesting twist to the start of your newborn’s life.

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