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23 and Me Review

Thursday, May 30th

2024 DNA Testing Kit Reviews

Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award 23 and Me Review 5 Star Rating

23 and Me

5 Star Rating
  • Two packages: Ancestry + Traits or Ancestry + Health
  • Extensive information included in the Health reports, including traits, genetic predispositions, and likely reactions/interactions with certain medications
  • Over 10 million people in its DNA network
  • Easy to create a family tree with both packages
  • $29/year membership for ongoing updates, exclusive health reports and more (one year included for free with Ancestry + Health kit)
  • "A" rated by the BBB
Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

23andMe should be your first choice if you want detailed information about your health and ancestry in one simple package. Founded in 2006, this was the first company to offer autosomal DNA testing: exactly what all of today's major services now use.

Ancestry + Traits for $99

You've got two DNA testing options with 23andMe. Their more basic kit is the Ancestry + Traits service. For $99, you'll get 80+ reports on various ways your DNA impacts your features, from your senses of taste and smell to your facial structure. On the ancestry side, you'll see your genetic makeup among more than 2,000 regions in the world; some results get as specific as the county in which your ancestors lived. You'll also get an ancestry timeline showing more than eight generations back. If you opt in to sharing your profile with DNA Relatives, you can connect with all of your matches. 23andMe will even build your family tree based on your DNA test.

Health + Ancestry for $199

23andMe's more extensive DNA testing kit - and their most popular - is the Health + Ancestry Service for $199. Not only will you get all the features of the Ancestry + Traits kit, but you'll get a deep dive into your genetic profile and how it might impact your overall wellness. There are more than 150 reports included in this package, from BRCA1/BRCA2 and celiac disease to carrier status and pharmacogenetics. You'll have a hard time finding another DNA test provider that gives you this level of depth in your health profile and such robust ancestry features too.

Affordable yearly membership for ongoing updates

This company regularly updates its clients with new information as it comes in, without making them retest or do anything extra. For example, in a nine-month span, 23andMe added Citalopram and Clopidogrel medication insights, HDL cholesterol, and melanoma to their reports. But, to maintain access to these releases, you'll need to pay for a membership. The first year is included with your Health + Ancestry Service purchase, and subsequent years are just $29.

Best DNA Testing Kits


  • $99 for the Ancestry + Traits service
  • $199 for the Health + Ancestry service
  • $198 for Health + Ancestry + one-year membership ($29 value)
  • Shipping fees of $9.95 for the first kit and $5 for every additional kit

Look for discounts and free shipping offers

At the time of this review, there was a pop-up offering free shipping on DNA testing kits if we signed up for 23andMe's news and special offers email list. We also spotted a promotion at the top of the site: buy one kit, get 10% off on each additional kit. That's not the most impressive discount we've seen, but it's better than nothing.

Excellent reputation overall

How about reputation? Generally speaking, this is a DNA test kit service whose results you can trust. Always keeping in mind that DNA testing is a work in progress, most people find that these tests are accurate - both for health and for ancestry. More than 2,000 customers have given 23andMe a perfect five-star rating, and the Better Business Bureau rates this company with an "A" grade. We found more than a few complaints, but almost every single one of them brought up problems with shipping (missing or delayed packages both to the customer and to the processing facility with the sample) or excessively long timeframes for running the sample and providing results. Very few people have anything negative to say about the results once they receive them.

Best choice for health + heritage DNA tests

Most DNA testing kits make you choose between learning about your ancestry or your genetic health profile, but 23andMe gives you a wealth of information about both with one simple, affordable test. You'll only have to watch one or two of the customer stories on the site to see just how valuable the results of these tests can be, from revealing health conditions of adoptees who don't know anything about their birth families' medical history to taking proactive steps to prevent disease. And, of course, there are all of the fun and amazing stories to discover when connecting with your relatives through your ancestry profile. Once again, 23andMe earns our highest recommendation among providers of DNA tests.

Where Can You Get the Best DNA Testing Kits?

Direct-to-consumer DNA testing has exploded over the last decade. From popular TV shows that document the ancestry of celebrities to clickbait articles describing the latest "she almost married her long-lost brother!" scandal prevented by a DNA test, it seems like everyone is pretty familiar with the appeal and power of these kits.

There are three main reasons why people buy a DNA test these days. The most common is to explore their heritage. Am I really related to royalty? Did my great-great-grandparents actually come from a small town in Italy? DNA tests can often reveal the answers to such questions. These tests also help people connect with living relatives, from distant cousins overseas to half-siblings and even previously-unknown parents.

The Best DNA Testing Kits Compare DNA Testing Kits Compare DNA Testing Kit Reviews What are the best DNA Testing Kits Best DNA Testing Kit Reviews

DNA Testing Kit FAQ

The two most common reasons for testing DNA are to determine one's ancestry and to identify underlying health conditions or predispositions. DNA testing may also be done to determine a child's paternity or detect infidelity.
Fortunately, no. A simple cheek swab or vial of saliva that can be returned by mail is usually all that's required.
That depends on the testing service you select. Some companies deliver your results in 1-4 weeks, while others have been known to take a month or longer.
Not necessarily. You'll probably pay somewhere between $59 and $649, depending on how comprehensive your selected test is.
Most of the time, no. DNA test kit prices usually include the cost of delivering the test to your home or office, the return shipping fees to the lab, and the cost of analyzing your sample.
DNA testing protocols are constantly evolving, especially with respect to tracking one's ancestry. Many of the companies use the company Helix to sequence your DNA. The individual companies are then responsible for interpreting the DNA results. You will see some differences between the different testing providers. Also, you may also want to share your results with your healthcare provider, so he or she can confirm any of the health-related results and request additional testing as needed.
Possibly, but that will depend on several factors. Not only will your relatives have to choose the same DNA testing platform as you, but both of you will have to set your account permissions to show DNA matches and to allow messages. That being said, thousands of people have connected with previously-unknown family members using many of today's most popular DNA testing providers.
That's an important question. Most DNA testing services promise to maintain your privacy by requiring your consent to share your results for matching or research purposes. You'll have to determine your own risk tolerance when it comes to concerns about data breaches, court subpoenas, and other ways your data could be accessed.
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Continued from above...

Most DNA testing services allow you to keep that information private, though, if you just want to see your ethnicity breakdown without disclosing yourself to any relatives who might be in their database.

The second reason many individuals choose to buy a DNA testing kit is to get information on health and wellness. Depending on the provider you choose, your results may include basic traits like cleft chin or sensitivity to caffeine, or they may go so far as to tell you if you're a carrier for certain hereditary diseases. These tests can help you be proactive with your health, give your physician more details to guide your treatment, and maybe even prolong your life.

If you've ever watched The Jerry Springer Show, you already know the third reason people buy DNA tests: to prove paternity. That's easier to do when the alleged father is a willing participant in the test, but some companies also offer sibling, half-sibling, grandparent and avuncular (such as aunt/uncle) options that can give you a percentage of likelihood that the individual is related.

You've got lots of options for DNA testing kids. Which one should you buy? These are the factors you should keep in mind as you decide:

  • Purpose. Why do you want to test your DNA: ancestry, health, or paternity? The answer to that question will automatically narrow down your choices.
  • Value. What will you get for what you spend? Will your results come in a detailed report or just a vague summary? Are there any other services included with your purchase, like a family tree builder, dietary recommendations, or other guidance?
  • Additional Costs. Some DNA testing kits have ongoing membership or subscription fees. Be sure you understand what you're getting when you click the "order now" button: many people are angry when they find "unexpected" charges on their credit cards because they didn't read the part that explained the monthly or annual service fees.
  • Reputation. What do other customers say about their experience with using the DNA test provider? Did they have any issues with getting results in a timely fashion? Does the test deliver what the company promises?

To help you choose the right service to learn more about your health and heritage, Top Consumer Reviews has evaluated and ranked the most popular providers of DNA testing kits on the market today. We're confident that through these tests, you can discover everything you've wanted to know about your genetics!

Compare DNA Testing Kits

Select any 2 DNA Testing Kits to compare them head to head

  • 23 and Me
  • Ancestry
  • My Heritage
  • myDNA
  • Family Tree DNA
  • Living DNA
  • Home DNA
  • Dynamic DNA Labs
  • American Screening Corporation
  • Nebula Genomics
23 and Me vs Ancestry 23 and Me vs My Heritage 23 and Me vs myDNA 23 and Me vs Family Tree DNA 23 and Me vs Living DNA 23 and Me vs Home DNA 23 and Me vs Dynamic DNA Labs 23 and Me vs American Screening Corporation 23 and Me vs Nebula Genomics Ancestry vs My Heritage Ancestry vs myDNA Ancestry vs Family Tree DNA Ancestry vs Living DNA Ancestry vs Home DNA Ancestry vs Dynamic DNA Labs Ancestry vs American Screening Corporation Ancestry vs Nebula Genomics My Heritage vs myDNA My Heritage vs Family Tree DNA My Heritage vs Living DNA My Heritage vs Home DNA My Heritage vs Dynamic DNA Labs My Heritage vs American Screening Corporation My Heritage vs Nebula Genomics myDNA vs Family Tree DNA myDNA vs Living DNA myDNA vs Home DNA myDNA vs Dynamic DNA Labs myDNA vs American Screening Corporation myDNA vs Nebula Genomics Family Tree DNA vs Living DNA Family Tree DNA vs Home DNA Family Tree DNA vs Dynamic DNA Labs Family Tree DNA vs American Screening Corporation Family Tree DNA vs Nebula Genomics Living DNA vs Home DNA Living DNA vs Dynamic DNA Labs Living DNA vs American Screening Corporation Living DNA vs Nebula Genomics Home DNA vs Dynamic DNA Labs Home DNA vs American Screening Corporation Home DNA vs Nebula Genomics Dynamic DNA Labs vs American Screening Corporation Dynamic DNA Labs vs Nebula Genomics American Screening Corporation vs Nebula Genomics
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