How Long Does 23andMe Take?

Written by Samantha Odake, BS | Last updated:

If you’re searching for the best DNA test to get, the wait time until you get your results could weigh in on whether or not what the company offers is worth the wait. 23andMe is one of the most popular DNA testing companies out there, but how long does 23andMe take to deliver your results? Read on to find out about 23andMe processing times, what to do with your results, and what other alternatives you should consider.

About 23andMe

23andMe is a DNA testing company founded in 2006 in Sunnyvale, California, by Anne Wojcicki and Linda Avey. They were one of the first companies to offer genetic tests directly to consumers, and they have sold over 12 million DNA kits around the world.

With 15 years in business, there have been a few controversies about how they handle customer data. Notoriously, they have partnered with GlaxoSmithKline to develop drugs based on customers’ DNA.

23andMe processing time

On their website, you can find information on how long 23andMe takes to process your sample. You can find out the status of your sample by accessing your account. There, you’ll also find an estimate of when your results are expected to be ready.

How long does 23andMe take

On average, it can take 3 to 4 weeks for your sample to be fully processed from the time it’s received by the lab.

23andMe warns that processing times are only estimates, and some samples may take longer than others. If your sample requires additional steps to be processed successfully, it may extend how long 23andMe takes to complete the analysis.

How long does 23andMe take to deliver your results?

Before you buy a DNA kit, you might want to know how long 23andMe takes to deliver your results. On the website, 23andMe says they usually ship orders 1 to 2 business days from the time of the purchase. As for how long it takes for you to receive your kit, for orders shipped within the United States, you may select from the following delivery options:

  • Standard: 3-6 business days from shipment
  • Expedited: 2-3 business days from shipment
  • Express: 1-2 business days from shipment

According to the company, samples shipped from within the US usually reach the lab in 2 to 4 weeks. Keep in mind that there is a difference between when your sample is delivered at the lab and when it’s scanned as received by the lab.

This delay can take up to 2 weeks. Your sample will only be marked as received when your kit is physically opened at the lab and the barcode is scanned. Once it’s received, it will enter the queue for processing.

Adding this together, it can take 23andMe up to 10 weeks to deliver your results after you mail back your DNA sample, although many customers report receiving their results in half that time.

You’ll get constant email updates throughout the process, including:

  • When your sample is received by the lab
  • When your results are available for viewing in your account
  • In the event of a failure in the analysis of your DNA

What to expect from your 23andMe results

The reports you receive depend on which service you choose to purchase. 23andMe offers you two options for DNA tests:

  • Ancestry + Traits: Ethnicity breakdown, DNA finder, and other ancestry features.
  • Health + Ancestry: In addition to your ancestry results, you’ll also get information about your health.

The DNA test you choose won’t influence how long 23andMe takes to deliver your results. You can also choose to become a 23andMe+ member for some additional health insights and exclusive access to features that come with a subscription.

Even with a membership, 23andMe can only tell you so much about your health. If you’re not a member, you’ll get an analysis of your risk for just a little over 10 health conditions, which is far from what can be gleaned from your DNA.

If you’re looking for actionable insights to help you optimize your health, you might need to look elsewhere. 23andMe won’t offer you much guidance on what you can do about your genetic risks.

What else can you do with your 23andMe results?

The most important result of your test with 23andMe is your raw DNA data, which you can easily access from your online account. After you have this DNA file, you can upload it to other platforms that can tell you a lot more about yourself based on your genes.

Upload your 23andMe file to SelfDecode

With 23andMe, you’ll get some insights on your health, but not much guidance on how to use this information. So, if your focus is on improving your overall well-being, you can upload your DNA data from 23andMe to companies such as SelfDecode to get the most out of your genes.

You already know how long 23andMe takes to process your DNA. The good news is that you can upload your raw DNA data from 23andMe to SelfDecode for free for instant health insights.



When you upload your DNA for free to SelfDecode, you’ll get access to wellness and traits reports, your genetic predispositions, and personalized health recommendations based on your genes.

If you decide that 23andMe is not for you, SelfDecode also offers a DNA kit that tests over 700,000 SNPs (more than 23andMe’s 640,000 SNPs) so you don’t miss out on your core health SNPs. If you’re having second thoughts about giving your information to 23andMe because of controversies regarding their monetization of customer data, SelfDecode could be the choice for you.

Regardless of which DNA kit you choose, you can still get more out of your data with SelfDecode. SelfDecode is the only direct-to-consumer company that uses AI and machine learning to accurately predict and analyze up to 83 million variants from a typical DNA file.

With SelfDecode, you’ll also have access to your raw DNA data at no extra cost. Plus, SelfDecode will never sell or share your data with anyone.


After understanding how long 23andMe takes to deliver your results, you may be wondering if the services they offer are worth it. 23andMe has some useful features, especially regarding your ancestry. If you’re interested in health, there are other DNA upload services you should check out.

After you receive your 23andMe results, you can upload your DNA file for free to SelfDecode. You’ll get access to wellness and traits reports with personalized health recommendations to help you gain more insights into your genes and how they affect your health.


About the Author

Samantha Odake

Samantha Odake

Samantha is an engineer turned writer with a passion for helping people.


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