Skip Navigation

Innerbody is independent and reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn More

Finding the Best At Home STD Test

Our experts explain everything you need to know about STD testing at home, including current discounts.

Last Updated: Oct 4, 2021

Best STD Test Guide

Getting tested for STDs is an intimidating prospect for many people. The US as a whole has a lot of strange shame issues around sexuality, and even the most confident among us cringe at the thought of a long swab inserted somewhere very sensitive (this is no longer a standard testing method). But few things in our lives could be more critical than regular STD testing, both for short-term comfort and long-term health. Luckily, with the proliferation of new direct-to-consumer STD test kits, screening yourself or a loved one in the privacy of your own home has never been easier or more comfortable.

We thoroughly tested and evaluated each offering from the top at-home testing companies. The guide below will tell you which ones excel at everything from accuracy to customer support, and it should help you decide which provider is right for you.

What is the best at home STD Test?

Summary of STD test recommendations:

We believe there are four companies worth considering in the at-home STD testing space: LetsGetChecked, Everlywell, myLAB Box, and STDcheck. Three of them allow you to collect your samples at home and mail them in, while the fourth is a hybrid model that provides anonymous in-person sample collection at any of their affiliated labs. Whichever company you choose, you’ll find friendly and efficient customer service, as well as accurate and reliable tests with results in as little as two days.

Some of these platforms test for far more than just STDs, but we limited their ratings to STD testing to make our comparison as fair as possible.

Our Top Choice

LetsGetChecked

A solid STD test that offers the right trade-off between value and comprehensiveness.

LetsGetChecked is a highly respected at-home testing company that receives high ratings in terms of Value, Accuracy, Privacy, and Customer Support.

Also Great

MyLAB Box

A great value -- a 5-in-1 test kit with trustworthy results in just a few days.

myLAB Box is a leading testing company. This kit tests you for chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV (I and II) and trich, which together account for 71% of STIs.

Why you should trust us

At Innerbody Research, we extensively test each health service we review, including all of these at-home STD testing services. All told, our team has spent over 90 hours testing and researching their STD test services to provide an accurate, unbiased analysis of how they compare, free of marketing jargon and gimmicks.

Over the past two decades, Innerbody Research has helped tens of millions of readers make more informed decisions to live healthier lifestyles. We evaluate the service based on adherence to quality, the latest medical evidence and health standards, and a simple question: would we buy the product or service ourselves if it weren’t part of our job, and would we recommend it to family and friends?

Additionally, like all health-related content on this website, this review was thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy.

Why test for STDs

There are certain things you can do to decrease your odds of contracting an STD. Consistent condom and dental dam use go a long way, but you shouldn’t rely on that alone. Regular testing is one of the best ways to ensure that you aren’t about to spread the infection to an intimate partner, and if they regularly test as well, you’ll be that much safer.

Find a Test

STDs are widespread

A staggering 50% of Americans will contract an STD by age 25. While half of the 20 million Americans who get a sexually transmitted infection this year will likely be younger than 25, this also means that roughly 10 million of those people will be older than 25. If you are sexually active, testing matters — regardless of your age.

Unfortunately, some STDs are notably on the rise in America. Cases of syphilis rose by 14% in just one year, according to recent CDC data. Cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis have increased dramatically over the past five years. Cases of gonorrhea are higher now than at any time since the early 1990s.

Globally there are nearly 400 million new infections of one or more of the following STDs each year:

  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Syphilis
  • Trichomoniasis

Most STDs are treatable

Now for some good news: all four of the common STDs above (chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, and syphilis) are curable with readily available treatments. To get treatment, though, you need to test and discover the infection.

The sooner you know that you are infected, the sooner you can begin treatment. As with many diseases, early diagnosis of an STD means that treatment is more likely to succeed. If the infection goes undetected for extended periods, treatment becomes more challenging and complicated, and the chances of reversing the damage lessen significantly.

Some STDs show no symptoms

Many STDs go unnoticed because they are asymptomatic until the later stages of the disease. You can’t tell someone has an STD just by looking at them. For example, people with HIV may not develop symptoms for a couple of years after being infected. Forty percent of people infected with herpes simplex 1 have one or zero outbreaks their entire lives. Common and easily curable STDs like chlamydia and syphilis can have horrific long-term complications, including infertility and irreversible neurological damage. The only way to prevent future complications is to get tested regularly to ensure early detection and treatment.

Find a Test

Testing at home vs. testing in a lab

We now can test reliably for all STDs at home or in a lab. Not only are these testing options more convenient than in the past, but they’re also highly discreet and accurate.

So how should you choose between testing at home or testing in a lab? The choice is partly about personal preference and comfort, though there are situations in which we advise an in-lab testing experience. Here is a handy chart to help you decide.

  Test at home Test in a lab
Routine testing to stay safe
Yes
Yes
Live in remote area
Yes
 
Unusual or worrying symptoms  
Yes
Little-to-no budget  
Yes
Limited transportation
Yes
 
Need results ASAP  
Yes
Presenting with sores or lesions  
Yes

As you can see, there are certain situations in which in-lab testing is ideal. Testing a lesion in the genital region for herpes is more reliable than any serological blood test will be, even though the latter is still incredibly accurate. Note that no at-home company offers every single test out there. Below, we’ll get into each potential test type and let you know where you can get it.

Relying on a professional to conduct the test in a lab can still be useful. Even though at-home test kits use the same methods with comparable accuracy, you may prefer to have the test administered in a lab if there’s a nagging voice in the back of your mind that doesn’t entirely trust you to collect your sample.

If you decide to test in a lab setting, our top recommended provider is STDcheck (see our full review to learn more).

Overall ratings for STD testing

Which company’s tests are right for you?

While we ranked these companies according to our overall impression of their performance, that doesn’t mean our top choice is right for everybody. Each company has areas in which they excel and offerings the other companies might lack. Take a look at our chart below to see which companies offer the tests or features you might need.

  LetsGetChecked Everlywell myLAB Box STDcheck
Early Detection HIV Screening      
Yes
PrEP Testing    
Yes
 
HSV 1 Testing
Yes
   
Yes
Hepatitis A Testing      
Yes
HPV Testing
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
UTI Testing    
Yes
 
3-Site Chlamydia/Gonorrhea Testing    
Yes
 
Free Doctor Consultation
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
Free medication available
Yes
     

How we evaluate STD testing options

Cost

Winner: Everlywell

From a pure cost perspective, Everlywell has some of the lowest prices out there. They also have a membership program that allows you to take almost any test on their site each month for just $24.99. LetsGetChecked is a close runner up here; they offer subscription services with progressive savings, and our readers can use the promo code INNERBODY30 to take 30% off any order.

Quality and accuracy

Winner: STDcheck

It’s hard to argue that in-person sample collection is inferior to at-home collection. STDcheck uses the same advanced techniques as their competitors, but the samples they test will always be as pure or purer than those submitted by home users. Not only do professional lab techs take the untrained human error out of the equation, but they also draw blood directly from the vein. Compared to a finger prick, this method is cleaner, and it produces more volume in less time, giving labs larger samples with which to work.

To be fair, judging an in-lab collection against at-home collections is a bit imbalanced. For the record, among at-home testing companies, we found LetsGetChecked had a slight edge over their competitors in kit quality and test accuracy.

Quality also hinges a lot on how clearly you can read your results. STDcheck gets top points here, as well. Their results readout is extremely comprehensive. Our testers could quickly see exactly what kind of test the company performed for each potential STD along with useful keys to show where their results landed in a detectable range. Other companies provide similar PDFs, but we found the STDcheck documents to be the most enlightening.

Speed and efficiency

Winner: LetsGetChecked

LetsGetChecked Standard 5 STD test

No one came close to LetsGetChecked in terms of shipping speed and results turnaround. The company says most shipments will take up to five days, and they offer express 2-day shipping for an added cost. Our testers selected free standard shipping, and their tests still arrived in just two days. For the delivery of results, most companies offer 2-5-day processing for tests once they arrive at the lab, but our testers consistently had their results in 1-2 days after lab arrival. LetsGetChecked also provides tracking in both directions so that you can follow your test every step of the way.

Communication speed is also an area in which LetsGetChecked excels. They have plenty of customer service reps ready to answer the phones, and they’re all well-informed enough that none of our testers ever needed a transfer to a lab tech or manager; they were able to answer even our most complex questions with ease.

Customer care

Winner: LetsGetChecked

LetsGetChecked consistently found ways to show thoughtfulness and consideration for their customers. That’s not to say the other companies don’t care; they each have strengths in this department. It’s just that LetsGetChecked is a bit stronger.

For example, LetsGetChecked and Everlywell are the only two companies to give you a pipette to help you collect your urine sample without the risk of spilling. But Everlywell’s kit uses a collapsible, reusable silicone collection cup instead of the simple, plastic-lined paper cup that LetsGetChecked provides. What you’re supposed to do with a reusable cup after you submit your sample is a mystery. It seems like a waste to throw it out, but how many people are going to pop it in the dishwasher and use it as a drinking glass on their next picnic?

This is largely a category where the little things like that add up, and LetsGetChecked seems to have put the most thought into it.

Test variety

Winner: myLAB Box

MyLab Box 5 Panel STD test

This was a close one. Each company has subtle differences in their offerings, and even myLAB Box isn’t perfect (no herpes simplex 1 test or early HIV detection). Ultimately, they had more overall tests than anyone else, and they offer many of them in well-thought-out bundles. We recognize that these bundles may be overkill for some people and that the bundling does raise the price. But from a safety perspective, we can’t forget that many STIs and STDs occur concurrently and increase the risk of catching others. So, for most people, buying even a basic bundle like the Safe Box or the three-site chlamydia and gonorrhea test is a wise move.

Are at-home STD tests accurate?

Yes, at-home tests are highly accurate. Many are capable of the same level of accuracy you’d get from any major health facility. They routinely use the same collection methods and process your samples in labs that also handle submissions from local clinics. Their components are either FDA-approved or FDA-cleared, and their ease of use helps prevent user error from tainting samples.

In some cases, you might even get more accurate results with at-home testing than testing in a clinic. That’s because both free and for-profit clinics have to keep a close eye on their bottom line, and they have higher brick-and-mortar overhead costs. Under that kind of financial pressure, some clinics turn to tests that are less reliable but significantly cheaper to process.

For example, all of the companies we’ve included in this review utilize herpes tests that look for immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. Some clinics prefer to run tests looking for immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies. Theoretically, these tests can detect a herpes infection sooner since IgM antibodies show up before IgG antibodies. Still, the IgM tests are far less accurate in general, and you may receive false results.

Individual STD tests vs. multi-test panels

The first thing to consider when choosing an STD home test is whether you want to use a multi-test panel or whether you want to test for a specific STD. Available tests cover just about any kind of infection you can imagine, from chlamydia and gonorrhea to hepatitis and HIV.

Generally, unless you are experiencing specific symptoms or have reason to believe that you may have been exposed to a particular STD, the multi-disease tests would likely be your best option. Many infections also occur concurrently, so it’s wise to check for others if you think you might have one.

However, as you might expect, the individual tests are almost always less expensive. If you are in doubt, we recommend getting advice from your physician.

Of all the companies that offer STD test kits online, our three favorites are LetsGetChecked, Everlywell, and myLAB Box. You cannot go wrong with any of these companies, as they are all rated highly in terms of accuracy, privacy, and customer service.

Multi-STD tests

All of the top providers offer kits that test for multiple STDs at once. These panels tend to be among the most popular and are often a smart choice for two reasons:

  • It is fairly common for a person to be infected with more than one STD at the same time.
  • These test panels save you money compared to buying multiple individual tests.

For instance, LetsGetChecked offers several STD panels:

  Complete 8 Standard 5 Basic 3 Simple 2
Current Price $249 $149 $119 $99
with Promo Code $174 $104 $83 $69
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Trichomoniasis
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
HIV
Yes
Yes
   
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
   
Gardnerella
Yes
     
Mycoplasma
Yes
     
Ureaplasma
Yes
     

Which level of multi-test do we recommend? Usually, the tests that cover chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, and trichomoniasis (at a minimum) are the best combination of comprehensiveness and value.

If you are the type of person who requires no stone be left unturned, you may want to spring for the most comprehensive tests, mainly LetsGetChecked’s Complete 8 or myLAB Box’s Total Box. These tests can be expensive but are a good deal if you consider how much testing for each STD individually would cost.

A good multi-test kit should be comprehensive and easy to use. myLAB Box and LetsGetChecked offer several multi-test kits for you to choose from, while Everlywell and STDcheck each offer only one. If you don’t mind having your sample collected in person, we recommend STDcheck’s 10-test panel for accuracy, speed, and value. The chart below breaks down the pricing and coverage for each company’s best multi-test panel.

  LetsGetChecked Complete 8 Everlywell STD Test myLAB Box Total Box STDcheck 10-Test Panel
Innerbody Promo Price $151 $151 $295 $215
Total STDs Tested 8 7 14 10
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Trichomoniasis
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
HIV (I&II)
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Herpes (I)      
Yes
Herpes (II)
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Hepatitis A      
Yes
Hepatitis B      
Yes
Hepatitis C  
Yes
Yes
Yes
HPV    
Yes
 
Mycoplasma  
Yes
 
Yes
Ureaplasma
Yes
     
Gardnerella
Yes
     

The myLAB Box Total Box is the only panel on this chart that tests for gonorrhea and chlamydia at three sites (oral, genital, and anal) rather than just one (genital). Also, their HPV test is an optional $30 add-on.

myLAB Box and STDcheck count HIV I and II testing as two tests in their overall count, whereas LetsGetChecked and Everlywell only count it as one.

Individual STD tests

Individual tests may be somewhat less comprehensive, and purchasing more than one or two will quickly add up to the cost of a complete test panel. But they can serve an important purpose.

Suppose you’ve recently tested negative across the board but afterward had sexual contact with someone who later tested positive for a specific STD. In that case, you may prefer to test individually for that infection. Standalone tests are also good for retesting after you complete a treatment course for a given diagnosis.

However, some test bundles don’t cover everything you need, and buying a standalone test can be a great supplement. For example, you may find that the Complete 8 panel by LetsGetChecked is the one you want, but you also want to test for herpes. LetsGetChecked screens for herpes simplexes 1 and 2, but only in their standalone Herpes Test. They don’t bundle it with any of their panels, so you’d have to buy it separately to supplement the panels they do offer.

If it’s within your budget, we almost always recommend a multi-test panel, simply because many STDs occur concurrently and because one infection almost always makes you more susceptible to another.

What STDs do at-home tests cover?

Everlywell Female STD test

Chlamydia

Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection that does not always produce symptoms. It’s essential to screen for chlamydia routinely, as it can cause serious health problems. myLAB Box, STDcheck, and Everlywell offer standalone chlamydia tests. LetsGetChecked offers the Simple 2 test, which tests for both chlamydia and gonorrhea.

Gonorrhea

Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted bacterial infection that can cause serious health problems, such as pelvic inflammatory disease if left untreated. You can order a standalone gonorrhea test from STDcheck, and myLAB Box. Everlywell and LetsGetChecked offer combination gonorrhea and chlamydia tests. Gonorrhea and chlamydia often occur together, so we encourage you to test for both whenever possible.

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are sexually transmitted viruses that can cause chronic infections and warts. Some strains can even cause cancer if left untreated. Men with HPV will usually show no symptoms, though oral HPV in men can lead to throat and mouth cancers. There is currently no test that can identify HPV in male samples.

A vaccine is available for women against the most dangerous strains of HPV. This vaccine covers more strains than the one that was available a few decades ago. If you haven’t already received it, we encourage you to contact your OBGYN and schedule an appointment.

The tests you should look at include the myLAB Box Cervical Cancer Screening Test, the LetsGetChecked HPV Test, and the Everlywell HPV Test.

Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis is a parasitic infection that only causes symptoms in approximately 30% of infected individuals. It can also cause inflammation that makes contracting other STDs much easier. Both Everlywell and myLAB Box offer trichomoniasis tests.

Hepatitis A, B, and C

Hepatitis is a disease that affects the liver, and it can spread through the exchange of bodily fluids. Hepatitis is one of the leading causes of liver cancer and can often produce no symptoms, meaning that patients can have the disease for many years before getting diagnosed. All of the companies we cover offer tests for hepatitis C. myLAB Box and LetsGetChecked also test for hepatitis B, but only STDcheck offers testing for A, B, and C strains.

HIV

HIV is a viral infection that attacks the body’s immune system. By killing off immune cells, HIV causes weakened immunity and can make the infected individual much more susceptible to other infections and diseases. HIV cannot be cured, but you can effectively manage it. It is crucial to detect the virus early to ensure that AIDS does not develop.

If you take one (or a number) of these tests and receive a positive test result, some providers will offer a free retest to confirm the result. Both myLAB Box [$79] and Everlywell [$49] offer standalone HIV tests, and STDcheck is the only company that provides an early detection RNA HIV screening.

myLAB Box is the only company to offer PrEP testing. PrEP stands for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, a prescription that can shield its users from an HIV infection. Ideally, you would combine this medication with safe sex practices if you engage in intercourse with an infected partner. PrEP prescriptions require regular lab work for renewal. myLAB Box can’t renew this prescription for you, but their PrEP box will provide you with the labwork your doctor needs to sign off on renewal.

Syphilis

Syphilis is a sexually transmitted infection that often causes sores, rashes, and fever. This infection is hazardous to pregnant women, as it can have fatal effects on the unborn baby. Left untreated, symptoms can hide for decades, only to resurface with severe complications. STDcheck, myLAB Box, and Everlywell offer standalone syphilis tests.

Herpes

Herpes is a viral infection that two types of viruses can cause. Often oversimplified as oral or genital herpes, both viruses can produce cold sores in the mouth and painful blister-like sores on the genitals and anus. There is no cure for herpes, but treatment can help infected individuals cope with the virus and minimize the possibility of spreading the infection to others. LetsGetChecked screens for both HSV-1 and 2 in their Herpes Test, and the other companies offer screening for just HSV-2.

Mycoplasma and ureaplasma

Mycoplasma and ureaplasma are bacteria among the smallest living creatures on earth, so small that they don’t even have cell walls. They aren’t hard to contract if you have unprotected contact with an infected individual, and many infections remain asymptomatic. That’s why testing is so important, especially when long-term infection can lead to things like pelvic inflammatory disease. myLAB Box has a test to detect Mycoplasma genitalium, but LetsGetChecked includes screening for both mycoplasma and ureaplasma in their Complete 8 test panel.

Gardnerella

Gardnerella is the bacterium associated with bacterial vaginosis (BV) in women. It often results in an unpleasant discharge that can be thin and watery and grey or white. It usually produces no symptoms in men, which is all the more reason to seek testing regardless of your sex. None of the companies we’ve reviewed offer a standalone Gardnerella test. Still, myLAB Box and LetsGetChecked both include it in their respective V-Box and Complete 8 panels.

Urinary tract infection (UTI)

Urinary tract infections aren’t often considered STDs, but they play an interesting role here. Sexual partners can spread bacteria to one another that can cause a UTI, and it’s easy to mistake the symptoms of an STD for those of a UTI — and vice versa. If you suspect you have an STD, but your results come back negative, you might want to test for a UTI. A positive UTI test may mean you’re truly in the clear with regards to any STD infection. And if you suspect a UTI, but test negative, then you should seek out an STD test, ideally a multi-test panel. Right now, myLAB Box is the only company that offers a UTI test.

STD testing companies

After evaluating all the major at-home STD testing companies, four companies rose to the top: LetsGetChecked, myLAB Box, STDcheck, and Everlywell. Below you will find brief snapshots along with links to our full review of each of these companies.

LetsGetChecked

LetsGetChecked offers a multitude of tests in addition to STD testing. They’re a fast and reliable company with great communication, though they don’t have the same flexibility in testing for individual STDs as others.

Pros

  • Reliance on ECLIA and NAAT testing for optimal accuracy and speed
  • Thoughtfully designed kits with well-made materials
  • Detailed sample collection videos
  • Shipment tracking in both directions
  • Highly knowledgeable phone support
  • Herpes test covers both simplexes 1 and 2
  • Extremely fast shipping for the standard option
  • Free medication provided for certain infections
  • Save 30% with promo code INNERBODY30

Cons

  • No live chat features
  • Herpes testing not part of any panel
  • No home delivery confirmation
  • Most comprehensive test isn’t available in the US
  • Chlamydia and gonorrhea test only covers genital infection (excluding oral/anal)

Available tests include:

  • Herpes Test
  • Hepatitis B & C Test
  • Simple 2
  • Basic 3
  • Standard 5
  • Complete 8

The final four tests on that list (with the numbers in their names) are LetsGetChecked’s multi-STD tests. Here is a handy chart with a breakdown of what tests these kits include (note: promo code pricing is available when you use promo code INNERBODY30 during purchase).

  Complete 8 Standard 5 Basic 3 Simple 2
Current Price $249 $149 $119 $99
with Promo Code $174 $104 $83 $69
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Trichomoniasis
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
HIV
Yes
Yes
   
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
   
Gardnerella
Yes
     
Mycoplasma
Yes
     
Ureaplasma
Yes
     

Visit our full LetsGetChecked review for more details.

myLAB Box

STD testing is something of a specialty for myLAB Box because it used to be their sole focus. Recently they have branched out into other testing areas unrelated to STDs as well. One of their most noteworthy features is the way they bundle their various kits.

Pros

  • Great variety of themed panels
  • Most comprehensive test available (14 tests if you count oral/anal/genital gonorrhea and chlamydia individually)
  • Only company to offer PrEP testing
  • Convenient search-by-symptom feature
  • Boxes available at retail locations in some major cities (cuts down on shipping time)
  • Save 20% with promo code INNERBODY20

Cons

  • Reliance on ELISA testing slows down some samples
  • Subpar customer communication
  • Herpes test only screens for simplex 2
  • No pipette for urine sample transfer

With myLAB Box, you can get convenient at-home testing, whether your goal is to screen for individual or multiple STDs.

You can see how their multi-test kits compare below, with discounts you can get if you use our INNERBODY20 discount code.

  Total Box Uber Box Safe Box V-Box Boomer Box PrEP Box
Regular Price $369 $269 $189 $189 $189 $399
with Promo Code $295 $215 $151 $151 $151 $319
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Trichomoniasis
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
Yes
HIV (I&II)
Yes
Yes
Yes
   
Yes
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
     
Yes
Herpes (II)
Yes
Yes
       
Hepatitis B          
Yes
Hepatitis C
Yes
Yes
   
Yes
Yes
HPV
Yes
         
Mycoplasma
Yes
         
Yeast      
Yes
   
Bacterial Vaginosis      
Yes
   

Learn more about the company at our full myLAB Box review.

Everlywell

Everlywell is a home testing company that offers a wide array of tests, many of which we highly recommend (for more information, visit our Everlywell review). What Everlywell offers in STD testing is not as extensive as other companies like LetsGetChecked and myLAB Box.

Pros

  • Lowest prices across the board, even more so with membership
  • Quick email responses
  • Site is extremely easy to navigate
  • Two well-crafted membership options
  • Save 25% with promo code REFER25

Cons

  • Reliance on ELISA testing slows down some samples
  • Subpar customer communication
  • Herpes test only screens for simplex 2
  • No pipette for urine sample transfer

Everlywell’s tests are high-quality, but you can find more thorough STD testing with the other companies. In addition to what you see in the chart below, Everlywell also offers individual testing for hepatitis C, syphilis, and trichomoniasis. (Note that you can get the promo code prices if you use our INNERBODY15 code at purchase.)

  STD Test - Female STD Test - Male Chlamydia & Gonorrhea HIV Test
Regular Price $149 $149 $49 $49
with Promo Code $127 $127 $42 $42
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
Trichomoniasis
Yes
Yes
   
HIV (I&II)
Yes
Yes
 
Yes
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
   
Herpes (I)
Yes
     
Hepatitis C
Yes
Yes
   

The male test panel utilizes urine and blood for its samples, while the female test kit relies on a vaginal swab and blood sample.

Everlywell’s HIV test is less expensive than those from STDcheck or myLAB Box, for instance, but this test only checks for antibodies rather than the dual-action test for antibodies and antigens.

STDcheck

STDcheck is one of the largest STD companies in the nation, if not the largest. And as their name implies, they focus on STD testing. This company has a different model, though. Rather than at-home testing with a mailed kit, you order your test at home and then come into a local testing site that partners with STDcheck — there are over 4,500 of these across the country. You then receive your results from the convenience of home.

Pros

  • Lack of shipping time makes them the fastest option
  • Limited opportunity for untrained human error
  • No need to give a real name
  • Automatic confirmation testing for HIV and syphilis
  • Live Chat with actual people who have answers to complex questions
  • Tests for hepatitis A, B, and C
  • Tests for HSV1 and HSV2
  • Only place to get RNA early HIV detection
  • Low-cost 10-test panel
  • Innerbody readers take $10 off your order

Cons

  • Minimal oversight over vast lab network creates huge disparities in quality
  • Lab order faxing system unreliable
  • Guarantees of privacy end once you walk into a given lab
  • Still have to go in person to get tested
  • Doctor consultation costs an absurd and unforgivable $95
  • No status updates between initial order and arrival of results

For those of you who would rather get tested by quickly visiting a lab near you, STDcheck is the way to go.

HIV testing sets STDcheck apart from the pack. They offer two great ways to test for HIV:

  • The HIV I & II (4th generation) test works reliably 2-3 weeks after exposure. You’ll get results within 1-2 days and can consult with a doctor over the phone if your test is positive. This test can detect HIV infection sooner than older versions of HIV tests because it looks for antibodies and antigens. The antigens can be detected sooner when antibody levels are still low.
  • The HIV RNA early detection test is a fantastic option for very early HIV testing, providing reliable results as soon as 11 days after exposure.

Below is a summary of what comes in the STDcheck multi-test kits.

  10 Test Panel 10 Test Panel (w/ Early Detection) Chlamydia & Gonorrhea Herpes I & II
Regular Price $139 $258 $99 $79
with Current Deal $129 $248 $89 $69
Chlamydia
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
Gonorrhea
Yes
Yes
Yes
 
HIV (I&II)
Yes
Yes
   
Syphilis
Yes
Yes
   
Herpes (I&II)
Yes
Yes
 
Yes
Hepatitis A
Yes
Yes
   
Hepatitis B
Yes
Yes
   
Hepatitis C
Yes
Yes
   
HIV RNA  
Yes
   

Other competitors

Nurx

Nurx is a massive company that offers everything from birth control to migraine relief. They have a trio of STI bundles that can look for chlamydia and gonorrhea (three-site), hepatitis C, syphilis, trichomoniasis, and HIV depending on which bundle you select. They also offer HPV screening outside of their STI bundles. Interestingly, even though the company provides treatment for herpes, they don’t have a test to detect it. Nurx accepts insurance, which can cut the cost of their bundles in half. Ultimately, we’d like to see them expand their individual test offerings and introduce screening for herpes.

Personalabs

Personalabs seems primed to offer thoughtful testing options beyond their current lineup, but that lineup is too limited for most people. Their primary screening interests lie in detecting hepatitis B, for which they have four different tests out of the eight they offer overall. That’s 50% of their testing dedicated to hepatitis B. It’s nice that they get into such detail and provide options for people looking to invest in different testing methods. However, they still need to add testing for herpes, gonorrhea, and syphilis and find a way to bundle their tests at a reduced cost to compete.

Frequently asked questions about STD testing

Are at-home STD tests accurate?

Most tests associated with at-home STD testing boast 92% accuracy or better. In short, at-home testing technology is as accurate as the tests ordered by doctors during a traditional visit, which isn’t a surprise since the tests are designed and analyzed by certified diagnostic labs. Here are just a few examples from our top choice for at-home STD testing (LetsGetChecked) and our top choice for in-lab testing (STDcheck) to give you a good idea of their commitment to accuracy and best practices.

The herpes testing offered by both of these companies is 98-99% accurate — with or without symptoms – as long as you wait six weeks after exposure to ensure the infection is detectable. Trichomoniasis is the third most common STD in the United States today — and it’s curable. If untreated, it can increase your risk of contracting HIV. myLAB Box’s trich test uses SDA (strand displacement amplification) technology to yield 95% sensitivity and 99% specificity, which is really reassuring.

  • Sensitivity is how often a person who is infected tests positive.
  • Specificity is how often a person who is not infected tests negative.

STDcheck’s chlamydia and gonorrhea tests use the FDA-cleared nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT) method. This urine test is extremely accurate, and you can take it as early as 2-6 days after exposure because it detects bacteria in the urine even before you show symptoms. Don’t be disappointed if you have never heard of it, but be comforted by how accurate it is:

  • It detects chlamydia with 99.8% sensitivity and 99.3% specificity.
  • It detects gonorrhea with 100% sensitivity and specificity.

HIV testing performed with any of our top recommended companies is exceptionally accurate.

How often should I get tested for STDs?

Periodic testing is vital for all sexually active people. The CDC’s advice about how frequently we get tested varies by type of infection and sexual behavior. If you are sexually active but haven’t been tested for a while, sooner is better. Here is a handy chart breaking down their advice about the minimum amount of testing.

Bear in mind that this is the minimum frequency — testing more frequently is always a good thing. If you have any unusual or unpleasant symptoms, you should get tested as soon as possible, regardless of when you previously tested.

  How often to test at minimum? CDC recommends at least these tests:
All sexually active people Yearly HIV
Sexually active women age <25 Yearly Gonorrhea and chlamydia
Women age >25 w/ mult. partners Yearly Gonorrhea and chlamydia
Women age >25 w/ at-risk or infected partner Yearly Gonorrhea and chlamydia
Pregnant women Early in pregnancy and periodically throughout Syphilis, HIV, hep B
Sexually active gay and bisexual men Yearly Syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV
Sexually active gay and bisexual men w/ mult. partners Every 3-6 months Syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV

STDs vs. STIs: what’s the difference?

People often use the terms STD and STI interchangeably, and often this doesn’t create much confusion, but it’s essential to be clear about what each term means. STI stands for sexually transmitted infection, and STD stands for sexually transmitted disease.

An STD results from an STI. It’s a subtle difference, and the nomenclature hasn’t entirely settled with the average citizen. Even the sites we review here prefer STD for clarity. That’s why we decided to stick with STD over STI. STD is the clearer choice at this point, even if it’s technically less accurate.

When should I test and retest?

Even if you suspect recent sexual activity might have exposed you to infection, these diseases have different incubation periods and window periods. Timing your test with these in mind will help you get the most accurate results.

  • An incubation period is the time between infection and when symptoms begin.
  • Window periods are the time between the initial infection and when a test will produce a positive result.

Window periods are the most important consideration when it comes to testing and transmission to others. You can get an accurate test result for some STDs if you take the test a week after a particular sexual encounter, but other STDs require more time before your test will be useful.

It’s also important for some STDs to perform confirmation tests and retest after treatment to make sure your course of treatment successfully clears away the infection.

The chart below outlines minimum window periods for common STDs and indicates which ones require a retest after treatment. Some testing methods may detect infections before others, but that increased speed often comes at the expense of accuracy. You should follow these guidelines and take the best test you can find.

  Window period Need to retest? Re-test timing
Chlamydia 5 days-2 weeks
Yes
3 months after treatment ends
Gonorrhea 5 days-2 weeks
Yes
3 months after treatment ends
Syphilis 1-3 months
Yes
3 months after treatment ends
Hep A 2-8 weeks (28 days avg)    
Hep B 1-9 weeks (4 weeks avg)    
Hep C 4-10 weeks
Yes
3 months after first test
Oral herpes 2-6 weeks    
Genital herpes 2-6 weeks    
HIV (antibody test) 23-90 days    
HIV (RNA test) 10-33 days    

What is the at-home testing process?

The whole at-home testing process is pretty straightforward. You acquire a test, which often ships directly to your door. You collect your sample, which usually involves a finger prick or a small urine sample. Then you pack it up and send it off to the lab for processing. In a little more detail, the process looks like this:

  1. Head to one of the websites we’ve reviewed and find the test that’s right for you. Remember that test panels are often the most responsible choice.

  2. Once you choose which test to take, place the order. Shipping times vary from company to company, but our testers received their kits from LetsGetChecked faster than from anybody else.

  3. All companies require that you register your kit upon arrival and before you collect your sample. This helps ensure speedy lab processing.

  4. Follow the instructions carefully to collect your sample. Usually, it is either a urine sample, a pinprick blood sample, or a vaginal swab. These instructions will be very clear and easy to follow, but make sure you follow them correctly to ensure high accuracy. The testing process itself generally requires no more than 5-10 minutes.

  5. Pack the sample into the included biohazard bag and send it to the lab in the included pre-paid postage box or envelope.

  6. Within about 2-8 business days, the company will notify you that your results are ready to view online using your private, secure access. If you test positive, you can (and should) obtain a consultation with the company’s professional medical staff to get advice about next steps.

Insider Tip: myLAB Box test kits come with small barcode stickers that include a space for your date of birth and collection date. It doesn’t say anywhere in the instructions, but you should place this sticker on the outside of the shipping package to ensure fast and accurate tracking between you and the lab.

How long in total does the at-home test process take?

At-home testing is surprisingly fast in many cases. You can expect results in as little as a week, though some variables can make that process take a little longer.

Exactly when you place your order can add a few days to your wait since you aren’t supposed to collect a sample on a Thursday or Friday if you want it to be fresh when it arrives at the lab. Since our testers received most of their shipments within two or three days, we recommend placing your order mid-week. That allows you to receive it early enough the following week that you can get it off to the lab quickly.

LetsGetChecked proved to be the fastest at-home choice in our tests, with a total turnaround of just over a week from ordering to results. If you need your results as fast as possible and are willing and able to go to one of STDcheck’s labs without delay, then you can have results in as little as two days from the time you place your order.

Are there any downsides to taking an STD test at home?

Taking an at-home test ordered online is similar to taking a test administered by a local lab clinic or your doctor. The sample extraction process is essentially the same. There are some important differences to be aware of, however.

Although many of our favorite at-home STD testing companies give you access to medical professionals throughout the purchasing and testing process, not all of these services are equal. STDcheck, for example, charges a hefty fee to speak with a doctor, where other companies offer consultations for free. Some — like LetsGetChecked — even offer free medication for specific diagnoses.

While the sample collection process is simple, drawing blood from your fingertip can be a little more painful than having a nurse draw it from a vein. Many people have difficulty getting enough blood from a single finger prick, and the lancets can leave minor uncomfortable bruises on your fingertips for a day or two.

At-home collection introduces a certain risk of human error, as well. You may insufficiently wash your hands before collection or touch a blood spot sheet in a way that could contaminate a sample. And problems with shipping could potentially delay your sample’s arrival to the point where it’s no longer viable. These issues don’t necessarily cancel out the many benefits of at-home testing, but you should be aware of them going into the process.

What happens if my results come back positive?

If your results are negative, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re STD-free. Incubation periods vary for STDs. If you’ve recently been exposed, it may mean that the STD can’t be detected yet. This is one reason why it’s essential to test for STDs regularly.

Companies remind patients that tests provide information and education — they do not diagnose or treat medical conditions. Tests shouldn’t replace a consultation with a healthcare provider. We recommend that you share your results with your doctor to obtain medical advice and treatment.

Most STDs are treatable, and some of the most common ones are curable. The purpose of STD testing is to identify infections so that you can receive treatment.

For certain infections — like chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trich — the physicians at LetsGetChecked, myLAB Box, and STDcheck can potentially prescribe medication for you immediately, which you could pick up at your local pharmacy. LetsGetchecked takes this a step further by shipping free medication directly to you.

However you acquire medication to treat an infection, be sure to follow its course exactly and get retested if necessary to confirm whether the treatment was effective.

One of the most important steps you can take after testing positive is to make sure anyone you may have infected is aware of the situation. This can be an awkward conversation, but it’s necessary. STDcheck stands out in this instance, as they offer an anonymous contact service that will call and inform anyone that you may have infected. There’s no way to connect the notification back to you.

How do at-home STD tests protect my privacy?

All of the testing companies we’ve covered have stringent commitments to privacy. They utilize labs subject to the same regulations and oversight as any other major testing facility in the country. Packaging materials are discreet, and it takes a few clicks through an email notification to get to your results, so it’s exceedingly rare that someone can stumble across them, even if they share your computer.

Privacy protection starts during the ordering process. Each of these companies has their specific cookie policies, but they all dabble in data utilization either for profit or to increase the quality of their advertising and user experiences. Opting out of these cookie programs can be annoying, and it may significantly impact your browsing experience. But the data we’re talking about is anonymous, so even if your order becomes a statistic related to other shoppers who bought a given test, there won’t be any identifying information attached to it.

One of the most enticing opportunities for speedy, private service comes from STDcheck. And while it’s true that they don’t require a name to coincide with the credit card used to pay, you will need to give them a name for your lab visit. You can use an alias here, but it can get frustrating once you arrive at the facility. STDcheck has well over 4,000 partner labs around the country, and the degree to which one lab tries to protect your privacy can vary wildly compared to another. That’s why we recommend STDcheck for speed, but not absolutely for privacy compared to the competition.

Read this next

myLAB Box Reviews: Are these tests worth it?
STDcheck.com Reviews: Is this STD testing company legit?
Everlywell Reviews: Which test is right for you?
LetsGetChecked Reviews: Should you take their tests?
Current Deals
Company logo

30% OFF

with code: INNERBODY30

REDEEM OFFER