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Having access to DNA testing kits in the retail marketplace is both convenient and confusing. Here at YourDNA, we have done the research and legwork so you don't have to. Here's what you need to know about buying a DNA kit from Walmart.
What's in this Guide?
- Quick Overview
- Does Walmart Sell DNA Tests?
- How Much Are DNA Tests at Walmart?
- Accuracy of Over the Counter DNA Tests at Walmart
- Getting Your Results From a DNA Test at Walmart
- If You Buy a DNA Test at Walmart, Can You Still Use a DNA Testing Service?
- Are Walmart DNA Tests Admissible in Court?
- Types of DNA Tests Sold at Walmart
- Other HomeDNA Kits
- Walmart DNA Test Kits Vs. Online DNA Test Kits
- DNA Tests at Walmart: Reviews
- Is a DNA Test at Walmart Right for You?
Disclaimer: Before You Read
It is important to know that your genes are not your destiny. There are various environmental and genetic factors working together to shape you. No matter your genetic makeup, maintain ideal blood pressure and glucose levels, avoid harmful alcohol intake, exercise regularly, get regular sleep. And for goodness sake, don't smoke.
Genetics is a quickly changing topic. Read More...
Taking a DNA test can be a daunting task for many, which is why having access to home versions can be a major relief.
You can take one in the comfort of your own home in your own time without having to rush the process. Local options exist to help you get you a test as soon as you need it. Walmart, for example, offers DNA testing kits that can meet your needs.
Does Walmart Sell DNA Tests?
Yes, Walmart does sell DNA tests that you can use. Some common genetic varieties are available, as well as more in-depth options, such as those for genetic disorders.
You can even receive a skin care analysis and report that provides insight into the best products for your skin 1. However, each kit has its own set of instructions as to where to send the swab and how to pay the associated lab fee, which is a separate price than what you pay for the kit at Walmart.
How Much Are DNA Tests at Walmart?
The prices vary on Walmart DNA tests, depending on which type you are buying.
If you’re purchasing a skin care kit, for example, the price is much lower than comprehensive genetic tests for ancestry. Genetic tests for dogs, which is another option you may be looking into, also cost less than the most common options for people.
Keep in mind that the cost of the Walmart kit is only the first expense. You will also pay an additional fee to submit your results to accurate laboratories that actually processes the DNA and provide you with your detailed report 2.
Accuracy of Over the Counter DNA Tests at Walmart
The accuracy of any DNA test is going to vary from one to the next.
You want to be sure to do your research and read reviews to determine if the kit you’re choosing and the lab they go through offer the most accurate results. Don't just rely on claims made by the manufacturer.
Getting Your Results From a DNA Test at Walmart
The DNA test kit you purchase at Walmart does not tell you anything. It simply provides you with the materials necessary to take your DNA sample.
You must submit the swab to a laboratory and pay their fee to get your results. It is imperative that you register with the appropriate testing service to receive your data.
Each kit will have its own set of instructions for how to do this, but they typically involve registering with the website and entering some personal data. Once you register and send in your sample, you will then wait a few days to a few weeks for the results to be uploaded.
If You Buy a DNA Test at Walmart, Can You Still Use a DNA Testing Service?
Though many of the DNA tests at Walmart get sent to laboratories to determine results, an actual DNA testing service may still be utilized.
In New York, for example, you must legally use a DNA testing service to determine paternity. You can purchase your Walmart DNA kit and then contact the company to actually use the kit at an authorized facility.
You need to contact the scheduling specialist to help find a location near you where the test can be taken so you can have a medical professional present when the sample is taken.
Are Walmart DNA Tests Admissible in Court?
Most Walmart DNA tests are not going to hold up in court. Courts require you to go through a more involved process with a few additional steps to ensure the most accurate and reliable results.
They want to be sure the samples came from the right people and the results are submitted through the correct chain of custody. At-home tests have a higher potential to be tampered with, which is the reason for the extra security measures.
As mentioned, New York does count some Walmart DNA tests as admissible in court. That is only because they are not actually completed at home. Instead, the actual sample collection is performed in front of a medical professional at a certified facility.
Types of DNA Tests Sold at Walmart
You have much more than the ability to verify DNA with a kit from Walmart.
You can look into your full genetic makeup, Search Walmart.com to see their full selection of test kits or check your local store to see what choices they have available. Please note that prices listed below are as of February 2019 and do not reflect any special pricing.
Personal Ancestry Kits
Genetic tests for ancestry help you determine where you came from, your genetic makeup, and what other family members you may have that you don’t even know about. They provide you with a complete look at your family tree.
These personal ancestry kits can even tell you what percentage of your DNA is from which region of the world.
23andMe - The 23andMe Personal Ancestry Kit from Walmart ($99) includes the fee for the lab costs. You can pick it up in store or have it shipped to you within two days.
The kit requires you to take a saliva sample using the tube provided, register the included barcode online, and mail it in using the prepaid package. It can take between six and eight weeks for results to come in for this test. You will see the full report online where you registered 3.
HomeDNA - The HomeDNA Ancestry Test ($24.99) does not include the lab fee. You get to choose between two reporting options, the starter and the advanced version. The starter option ($39 lab fee) lets you see percentages for the various regions your ancestors were from and helps you find your origins.
The advanced choice ($99 lab fee) helps you track your ancestral routes and can track down the precise town where you first ancestors lived.
When looking to find out the paternity of a child, a paternity test needs to be taken. Walmart offers several versions.
It is not common to find genetic tests before birth for at-home use, so you will have to have the DNA of the child and potential father, for the best results the mother's DNA sample is recommended as well. The results will show the probability for paternity, which will only read up to a 99.9% match.
HomeDNA - One of the commonly seen brands, the HomeDNA Paternity Test Kit ($14.99) allows you to get results as soon as the same day the samples are received at the lab. You purchase the kit, register at DNAtesting.com, complete the patient information, and pay the fee ($139).
You will then swab the inside of your cheek and do the same for your child. Have the potential father do a swab as well. Mail all three of them in using the prepaid package provided and get results either the day of or within two days after they’ve been received by the lab 4.
Reveal - Another option is the Reveal DNA Paternity Test ($31.99). It also promises quick results within two days after receiving the swabs. It works the same way as the HomeDNA test does, except you use a different laboratory ($125).
DNA Tests for Dogs
With genetic tests for dogs you can discover what breed your dog is if you’re currently unsure. This is great for breeders or those who are simply curious to know.
They can also tell you which diseases and conditions are common for that breed.
DNAffirm - DNAffirm Dog Breed DNA Test ($39.99) is an easy and painless way to find your dog’s breed. You can even purchase a two-pack ($77.58) if you have two dogs you want to check.
You swab the inside of their mouth just as you would do for a human DNA test. Breed heritage can help determine behavior traits and medical conditions that may develop. Results arrive within two weeks after samples have been received.
Wisdom Panel - The Wisdom Panel 3.0 Dog Breed Identification DNA Test Kit ($86.46) checks over 250 breed options. The results offer a look by percentage at each breed your dog may be.
It also screens for multidrug sensitivity 5. You will use the provided swabs to get two samples of your dog’s skin cells from the inside of his cheek. You should spend at least 15 seconds rubbing the cheek to get a full sample.
Activate the kit online and mail the samples into the lab. Results should be available within two to three weeks.
Other HomeDNA Kits
HomeDNA, one of the most purchased options due to its affordability, offers a plethora of other kit options.
You can receive a skin care analysis, food and pet sensitivity results, and healthy weight report using the available options this company provides. Each one uses your DNA to help you pinpoint precisely what products or options are best for you to maintain your optimal health and wellness.
Each kit typically costs $24.99 to purchase.
Healthy Weight - The HomeDNA Healthy Weight At-Home DNA Test Kit uses your genetics to help you realize what changes you should make to become healthier. Register your kit, pay the lab fee ($99), and follow the provided instructions to swab for your DNA before mailing it in.
Your report will take less than six weeks to become available online. It’s ideal to use as a weight management system.
Skin Care - The HomeDNA Skin Care At-Home DNA Test Kit identifies seven areas. It will take a look at your genetics to determine your collagen quality, skin elasticity, whether you’ll develop wrinkles, the best form of sun protection, pigmentation, skin antioxidants, and skin sensitivity.
Register, pay the fee ($79), send in your swabs, and wait for results.
Food and Pet Sensitivity - The HomeDNA Food & Pet Sensitivity At-Home DNA Test Kit focuses on eight areas people can commonly be sensitive to including gluten, nuts, lactose, histamines, and pet dander. Register online and pay the lab fee ($79) before mailing in the swabs.
You’ll have you report in a few weeks to help you determine which of these things you should avoid to limit your reactions.
Walmart DNA Test Kits Vs. Online DNA Test Kits
Walmart DNA test kits and other kits you can order online are relatively the same in terms of accuracy, methods for submitting the provided swabs, and timeliness of results thereafter.
However, purchasing a kit directly from your local Walmart saves you a great deal of time.
You can walk right out of the store with your kit in hand instead of having to wait days or longer for an online version to be sent through the mail. Even if you order online through Walmart.com, you still typically see the test at your doorstep faster due to the 2-day shipping option as well as in-store pickup.
DNA Tests at Walmart: Reviews
Be sure to read the reviews of the various Walmart DNA test options. You want to ensure you’re choosing one that has been proven to work as intended. Some of the reviews state:
- “Results were fast.”
- “Needs a simpler explanation.”
- “I still have questions.”
- “I was very disappointed with the details of the results.”
- “Within 4 days, I received my test results.”
Based on these reviews for a HomeDNA ancestry test, results are quick but can be confusing.
Reviews for one of the most purchased tests, 23andMe, are even better.
- “Great purchase!”
- “Found a sister!”
- “Great features.”
- “I love 23andMe.”
Some did say it wasn’t what they expected or they didn’t feel the results were accurate based on what they knew from their families, but overall 4 stars were given.
HomeDNA has a better track record for paternity testing. They earned more than 4 1/2 stars on Walmart with reviews saying:
- “Awesome response time!”
- “I am so happy I did the DNA test through your company.”
- “Quick and easy to access.”
- “Reliable testing used nationwide.”
- “Very happy."
Is a DNA Test at Walmart Right for You?
If a DNA test is something you want or need, a kit from Walmart may be right for you.
Most of their options are affordable and easy to use. The store even offers genetic tests for dogs if you need one for your pet instead of yourself. Take a look at the options and see which one best fits your needs and your price range.
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- HomeDNA™ Skin Care At-Home DNA Test Kit.
HomeDNA. Walmart. 2019.
- HomeDNA™ Ancestry Test, Collection Kit Only: Starter & Advanced Mail In At-Home DNA Testing (Lab Fee Not Included).
HomeDNA. Walmart. 2019.
- How It Works.
- How does the paternity test kit work?
- Genetic Health Screening.