Ever want to find out for sure if you’re really half Italian or that one eighth Native American? Discovery your ancestry with an at-home DNA kit. There are a lot of different kits out there (paternity, siblings, etc.), but this article will focus specifically on the ones that uncover things about you: heritage, ethnicity, medical conditions, nutritional sensitivities and other personal DNA info that can help you improve the rest of your life.
Ready to learn about your closest 1000 cousins? It’s one test kit per person, so don’t go swabbing your whole family in the mouth. Remember this stuff is pretty accurate, but nothing is 100%.
One thing to know before getting into this: a lot of extra data most of these services provide is raw, as in .CSV format. They are allowed to provide the data but not interpret it for you. If you’re not a crazy computer wiz, trusted websites like Promethease.com will interpret the raw data results for you for $5. Geneticgenie.org will interpret raw data specifically related to genes that involve chronic illnesses for free.
If you’re adopted or don’t know one of your parents, you could find birth parents or maybe solve some family or health mysteries. Take care and make sure you really want to know this information if it may be a sensitive topic for you.
With everything from ancestry to your personalized nutrition and exercise plan or wine preferences based on DNA, there’s something for everyone. And we’re pretty sure everyone will find the results very interesting. It’s pretty cool to learn things about yourself! (Hint: makes a REALLY great gift for just about anyone!)
Curious about Fido’s origins? There’s something for our doggos too. Of course.
Here are the 10 best DNA tests out there. My opinion is completely unbiased.
1. MyHeritage DNA Test Kit – Ancestry & Ethnicity Genetic Testing
Ever wondered if you had a long lost brother? With this kit, you’re likely to discover relatives you’ve never met before. It even gives you the ability to connect with them. Your results are delivered digitally for easy 3D interactivity sharing to social media. Just swab your cheek, send the package back, wait for them to analyze your results and then check them online in four weeks. Technology is cool, right?
Price: $75.00. Free shipping.
- Discover your ancestry and find relatives you never knew about on both mom and dad’s side
- Detailed ethnicity breakdown of 42 regions, including 7 East Asian regions
- Simple cheek swab test you can do at home
- They give you an interactive 3D map you can share on social media
- Privacy is important: account and personal data are secured and protected by multiple layers of encryption
- You need to sign up with their website with a membership to access additional premium results
- This one is the least expensive for a reason: you get the least amount of information. Know that going into it.
Find more MyHeritage DNA Test Kit – Ancestry & Ethnicity Genetic Testing information and reviews here.
2. 23andMe DNA Test Kit Ancestry Personal Genetic Service
Maybe one of the most talked-about kits, 23andMe gives you a detailed breakdown of your ancestry (including neanderthals!) from more than 150 populations worldwide. With 23andMe, you can trace parts of your ancestry to a specific group of people from 1000+ years ago. This kit provides an at-home saliva sample kit that you send back (pre-paid) to the lab for genetic DNA testing. Expect awe-inspiring results within 6-8 weeks.
Price: $99.00. Free shipping.
- Opt-in to discover and connect with people who share DNA with you – and even message them if you want. Free.
- No additional lab fee/no monthly fee
- Actually teaches you about the places your ancestors are from
- This version of the kit doesn’t have everything you can learn about yourself. That one costs more but it’s freaking awesome. (See #3 right below.) After you complete the test, you can upgrade your results for $125, but it would be less expensive to just buy the more inclusive kit in the first place.
3. 23andMe DNA Test Kit – Health + Ancestry Personal Genetic Service – 75+ Online Reports
This one does everything the 23andMe kit above does and more. The premium version of 23andMe provides information about your health in addition to all of the ancestry and genetic DNA testing.
This can be particularly helpful for people who want to find out if they carry a disease or which genetic health risks show up in your DNA, such as Celiac Disease, Late-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease. Become aware of what steps to take earlier in life to avoid specific debilitating health issues that may happen down the line.
23andMe also reveals your ideal weight and muscle composition based on your genes. You’ll confirm traits like hair loss (current or future), unibrows, lactose intolerance and sleep habits.
Honestly, this one is my favorite. You learn so much about yourself if you know how to use the data correctly. Here’s how: 23andMe gives you a lot of raw data here, but they aren’t legally allowed to interpret it for you. Trusted websites like Promethease.com will interpret the results for you for $5. Geneticgenie.org will interpret raw data specifically related to genes that involve chronic illnesses.
Price: $199.00. Free shipping.
- Very secure signup, website and privacy
- Results appear to be more accurate than other DNA tests out there
- Learn lots of things about yourself that can help you take preventative steps for your current and future health
- Be careful, there may be some health ailments you aren’t ready to see or may not like. But remember: knowledge is power. Prevention is the best “cure” to any disease.
- Customer service doesn’t seem to be the best
Find more 23andMe DNA Test – Health + Ancestry Personal Genetic Service – 75+ Online Reports information and reviews here.
4. AncestryDNA: Genetic Testing
This #1 selling DNA test has a social network of nearly 10 million people that grows daily. Those people have made over 1 billion family connections. Similar to 23andMe, AncestryDNA asks you to spit in a prepaid return package in order to learn vast details about your ethnicities. This one is best to meet people from all over your family tree since they have the biggest social database. Long lost sister? Second cousins in Italy? 8th cousins in Australia? You can find out!
Price: $99.00. Free shipping.
- Get 2x more geographic detail than any other test.
- Estimate origins to more than 350 regions around the world
- Optional AncestryDNA’s Migrations allows you to follow the paths of your ancestors and the stories behind their journeys. Neat.
- Doesn’t break down Asian ethnicities as well as other tests
- Requires a subscription to really get the most use out of this test and site. It costs $49 every six months to access pedigrees, surnames, and locations/maps of your cousins.
5. National Geographic DNA Test Kit: Geno 2.0 Next Generation Ancestry – Powered by Helix
National Geographic has officially gotten in on the DNA kits. View a breakdown of your regional ancestry by percentage — going as far back as 500,000 years! Learn where they lived, how they migrated, right back to neanderthal times. Isn’t science awesome? This next-gen sequencing of your exome would have cost thousands of dollars just a few years before.
You’ll receive the results in a custom video of your ancestry journey that’s easy to share on social media. A fun app and website allows you to interact with your personal data. Cool bonus: find out if you’re related to famous people in history, like George Washington, Queen Victoria or Nikola Tesla.
Price: $99.95. Free shipping.
- Helix is a well known and reputable brand for DNA testing. One of the BEST things about Helix (which owns a few of the products below) is that you only have to pay for your saliva sample and sequence your DNA once. They have lots of other information you can then purchase, like a customized 12-week fat burning program, food sensitivity test and more.
- Also features a social connection on their site with one million subscribers also looking to meet their long-lost family
- When cross-referenced with other kits, it proved accurate. So there’s that.
- It’s NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
- Gives you raw data (.CSV) and again, you’ll need to use a website like Promethease.com to fully analyze your data unless you know computer stuff. This is a legality thing and there’s really no way around it.
Find more National Geographic DNA Kit: Geno 2.0 Next Generation Ancestry- Powered by Helix information and reviews here.
6. Vitagene DNA Test Kit with optional Health + Skin and Beauty + Nutritional Coaching
So, here’s how this one works:
You get a box with two mouth swabs. Stick it in your mouth, put it back in the box, and send it back to the lab. While you wait four weeks for the lab results to process, you’ll have time to fill out a pretty lengthy online questionnaire about your goals and medical history. After four weeks, they send a beautifully printed vitality guide to your home.
The vitality guide is a physical object that you can hold in your hands, which is something that many others lack — most others display all results online or an app. The guide will teach you information about your ancestry with a map and percentages. What sets it apart, though, is it also includes recommended supplements for optimal health.
You can upgrade this to the Ancestry + Health + Skin and Beauty Personal Genetic Report or the Ancestry + Health + Skin and Beauty Personal Genetic Reports + Nutritional Coaching by clicking the link below.
Price: $42.76 and up, depending on how much you want to learn about yourself.
- Shorter wait time than other similar companies
- Learn which supplements are best for your body and what you may be lacking. It can also include which foods and exercises are best.
- Saliva test, easy-peasy
- Learn about your genetic skin and beauty traits.
- Some people say they expected more from the results (we don’t know which version they bought, though)
- There are mentions of diet & exercise routines being too generic. There’s also a lot that say they’re great, though, so… take it with a grain of salt.
Find more Vitagene DNA Kit with optional Health + Skin and Beauty + Nutritional Coaching information and reviews here.
7. EverlyWell – At Home Food Sensitivity Test Kit
This kit was such a good idea that Shark Tank invested in it. EverlyWell’s technology tests food sensitivities (not to be confused with allergies) to 96 different foods that are commonly found in Western diets, including dairy, yeast, gluten and wheat. Ever been curious if bread is REALLY that bad for you? Now you can know for sure!
If you cut out foods you may be sensitive to, you can resolve ongoing health issues like fatigue, brain fog, stomach ailments or migraines. You’ll also probably lose weight because if you follow the advice, you stop basically poisoning yourself on a daily basis.
Price: $199.00. Free shipping.
- Receive results within days of returning your sample. The fastest on this list.
- Results seem to be in-line with doctor’s recommendations
- Printable 17 page report
- Change your eating habits to live the best life you can
- Kits are not permitted for sale in MD, NY, NJ, or RI. Sorry guys. You also have to be 18+.
- It’s an easy at-home kit, but it’s a prick of blood. Just an FYI to you needlephobes. As someone who regularly passes out getting blood drawn (or even the thought of getting blood drawn…sigh), I think even I could handle the simple prick and few drops they need.
8. Insitome DNA Test Kit: Regional Ancestry – 24+ Regional Clusters including Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas, Oceania
This is another Helix test like the Nat Geo one. This test focuses on your genome-wide genetic ancestry and highlights where your DNA falls along 24+ regional ancestry clusters including the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Oceania.
Learn your unique stories from ancestral clusters. Understand the history behind even minute details of your ancestry across continents and millenia.
Data is extracted from your saliva sample based on the latest research and technology by using a global database of thousands of DNA samples.
If you already bought the Nat Geo or another DNA test designed by Helix, you won’t need to pay full price for this one. Just search their website for it and get the results at a heavy discount.
Price: $109.99. Free shipping.
Buy the Insitome DNA Kit: Regional Ancestry – 24+ Regional Clusters including Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas, Oceania here.
- Tells you the story of your ancestors — it doesn’t only just show you numbers and percentages
- Fast results
- From people who’ve tried them all, this one seems to be a favorite because it has the most information for the price.
- Only negative reviews seem to be people who don’t understand how the website works, so I think this one is a pretty safe bet.
Find more Insitome DNA Kit: Regional Ancestry – 24+ Regional Clusters including Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas, Oceania information and reviews here.
9. DNAFit DNA Test Kit: Personalized Exercise + Nutrition Plans – Fitness Diet Pro
Hey fitness and health gurus, this one is for you! DNAFit is also tested by Helix (it’s a pretty popular company for DNA testing). This one goes a little more in depth than other test kits when it comes to what exactly is right for your body when it comes to health, exercise and nutrition.
This award-winning DNA test gives you personalized insight to the right exercises and nutrition choices for your body. Isn’t that cool? Do the test one time and you’ll know for the rest of your life what’s best for you. You’ll learn how your body responds to endurance or power training, your resilience to sports injuries and way more.
Ever been curious about your genetic response to carbs, lactose, saturated fats, alcohol and caffeine? This will tell you. It will also let you know if your genes indicate that you have a need for omega-3 fats, vitamin B, vitamin D and antioxidants in your diet.
Here’s what you’ll get:
1. Fitness – personal exercise & fitness response
2. Nutrition – personal diet & nutrition response
3. Muscle Builder Plan – genetically-guided training
4. Fat Burner Plan
5. Meal Planner – genetically-guided nutrition
6. Your infographic – genetic summary
7. Startline Elite Athletic Benchmark Analysis Database – Comparison to other elite athletes’ genetic profiles (this one costs $10 extra though).
Like the two above, if you have already purchased a Helix product, check out their website to get this information at a super reduced rate.
Price: $249.99. Free shipping.
- Detailed, thorough and impressive data results.
- You’ll get the results in 4-6 weeks! This is quicker than others.
- Learn how to lower your bad cholesterol and other health ailments
- A great tool for those trying to get fit, those who are fit, or those who want to know the best place to get started.
- An older reviewer (73 years old) said he felt this was targeted more towards younger men: 40 or younger. Take that into consideration, but don’t let it stop you if you are older and fit.
Find more DNAFit DNA Kit: Personalized Exercise + Nutrition Plans – Fitness Diet Pro information and reviews here.
10. Vinome DNA Test Kit: Genetic Wine Taste Preferences Profile + Curated Wines to Match – Wine Explorer
This one’s just for fun, but a wine connoisseur would definitely love this as a gift. Or buy it as a self-gift. I won’t tell. It combines your analyzed DNA with taste preferences tailored specifically to your wine-liking profile. All that is revealed by your DNA and evidence-based science that enables a highly personalized wine preference profile.
To make buying wine easier, an online wine store is waiting for you at Vinome with curated bottles that match your biological taste preferences. You’ll even be able to rate and review the wines you try and see what others think, too.
Like some of the ones above, go to the Helix website to purchase this if you already have had a test done by Helix. They’ll give it to you at a discounted rate.
Price: $109.99. Free shipping.
Buy the Vinome DNA Kit: Genetic Wine Taste Preferences Profile + Curated Wines to Match – Wine Explorer here.
- It’s cool that this connects to Vinome, which is an impressive online wine community/store that delivers to your door.
- Great for those who really don’t know much about wine but find themselves either a) wanting to or b) finding themselves in a situation where they probably should
- It’s freaking fun! It’s an entertaining experiment to try with your SO, family or best friends.
- There are no negative reviews about this product. Everyone rated it five stars! That must mean it’s pretty darn awesome.