Best DNA ancestry kit

Health & Wellness

Some DNA ancestry kits, such as 23andMe, can tell you if you have Neanderthal ancestry.

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Which DNA ancestry kit is best? 

Everyone likes a good story, and the best ones connect with you in some way, shape or form. That’s why learning about your heritage from a DNA ancestry kit is one of the most exciting stories you can uncover. 

The best DNA ancestry kit will not only tell you more about where your family came from but will enable you to connect to relatives and build an accurate family tree. A top pick for the best one is the 23andMe DNA Ancestry Kit

What to know before you buy a DNA ancestry kit

How DNA ancestry tests work

Companies that sell DNA ancestry kits require you to send in a saliva sample for them to analyze. Once they acquire the necessary data from your genetic makeup, they compare it to other DNA profiles from all over the world. 

The more robust the company’s DNA database is, the more accurate and informative your results will be. That’s why it’s so important to buy the best DNA ancestry kit. 

How your sample is collected

Nearly every DNA ancestry kit will ask you for a saliva sample. Some will ask for a cheek swab, while others will ask you to fill a small tube with saliva. 

The most crucial detail to remember is that you should not eat, drink, smoke or chew gum for at least 30 minutes before providing your sample. 

Time frame

The best DNA ancestry kits can take three to five weeks to deliver your results via a personalized online dashboard. However, some tests can take up to eight weeks.

What to look for in a quality DNA ancestry kit

Robust data

Ensure that the company you buy your DNA ancestry kit from has access to a robust list of geographic locations for comparison. That data will help them more accurately pinpoint where your ancestors came from, as well as give you deeper insights into your health and ethnicity.  


The best DNA ancestry kit will give you the option to connect to your relatives. While your data is kept private and confidential by reputable companies, you should be able to create a profile that can be made available exclusively to those who share your DNA. That profile will let you and your relatives know how much DNA you share and which ancestors you have in common.

Health insights

While you may or may not want detailed insights into the future of your health right now, it is helpful to have them readily available with a simple upgrade option. 

Even the best DNA ancestry kit results cannot be used to diagnose an illness, but it can tell you which traits you have inherited that put you at a higher risk for certain conditions. That information could help you and your doctor better plan for your future. 

How much you can expect to spend on a DNA ancestry kit

You will pay $60-$80 for the initial DNA ancestry kit, and some companies add an additional $20 or more in monthly subscription fees for family-tree access. DNA ancestry kits that include health predispositions cost around $100.

DNA ancestry kit FAQ

Will the Bureau of Indian Affairs accept your test kit results?

A. No. The Bureau of Indian Affairs will not grant you a tribal membership based on your DNA ancestry kit results.

How can you ensure your DNA ancestry kit results are private? 

A. All DNA ancestry tests should boast a clear privacy statement that includes transparent security practices such as data encryption and secure databases, and it should give you control over your data. Do not buy a test from a company that does not make your security a priority.

What’s the best DNA ancestry kit to buy?

Top DNA ancestry kit

23andMe DNA Kit

23andMe DNA Kit

What you need to know: It is the best DNA ancestry kit with an easy-to-use dashboard that guides you through your family’s history and optionally connects you to your current relatives.  

What you’ll love: Its database provides you with robust data about your heritage by comparing your DNA to more than 2,00 regions. Your private online profile allows you to find, connect with and message your relatives. You can also upgrade at any time for health insights. 

What you should consider: As its database expands, your profile will update with more accurate information every few months, so be prepared for minor changes. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top DNA ancestry kit for the money

AncestryDNA: Genetic Ethnicity Test

AncestryDNA: Genetic Ethnicity Test

What you need to know: If you want to build your family tree on Ancestry’s site, you can use this DNA ancestry kit to help guide you through the discovery process and connect to more relatives.

What you’ll love: Its database covers more than 1,500 regions and delivers a detailed ethnicity profile on your DNA. Its monthly subscription lets you connect to your living relatives and access its online library of historical documents that could include information about your ancestors. 

What you should consider: The subscription to your family tree and library of data requires a monthly subscription.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

MyHeritage DNA Test KitA

MyHeritage DNA Test KitA

What you need to know: It finds your family’s origins in its comprehensive database of more than 2,100 regions for detailed information about your heritage. 

What you’ll love: Sample collection is easy with a cheek swab, and your data is available in three to four weeks. Its comparison process covers 42 ethnicities and tracks your origins in 2,114 regions. With an added online subscription, you can connect to your family tree. 

What you should consider: To access your family tree, you need a paid subscription. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Ella Scott writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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