Best DNA Tests for Ancestry | 2023 DNA Testing

Diahan Southard

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The best DNA tests for ancestry in 2023 include both ethnicity results AND DNA matches. Here are the top DNA test kit options for exploring family history.

Taking a DNA test can help you discover more about your heritage and connect with biological relatives. An autosomal DNA test is the most common test to take. This genealogical DNA test sheds light on your genetic family history on both sides of your family for the past 4-6 generations.

Best DNA Tests for Family History 2021 DNA test kitThese leading DNA tests give you ancestral ethnicity results AND a list of your genetic relatives (DNA matches) who have tested there. These sites have tools to help you connect with your genetic relatives and figure out how you’re related. Below is a helpful comparison table showing the top features of each test.

Just remember—the best DNA test kit for YOU depends on what you want to know. Below the comparison table, you’ll find more detailed tips on topics like the best DNA test for different kinds of origins, or finding birth relatives, etc.

Best DNA Tests for Ancestry



Family Tree DNA

Living DNA

MyHeritage DNA

Where available

(Consider where you live AND where your DNA relatives may live)

US, UK, Canada, Australia, Germany, Ireland, Sweden and more

US, UK, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Germany, Ireland, Sweden, South Korea and more

GLOBALLY (anywhere U.S. Postal Service delivers); does not ship to Sudan or Iran

GLOBALLY; no exceptions listed

GLOBALLY except Israel, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, North Korea, Lebanon, Russia, and Syria

Swab or spit?






How many testers?

(More testers = more potential DNA relatives)

12 million+

25 million+

est. 2 million


5.7 million

Ethnicity estimate

2,600+ global regions (including specific locales and migration groups)

150 global regions, including 21 regions in Great Britain and Ireland

2,000+ global regions and Genetic Groups (specific locales and migration groups) 

Shared matches tool

currently unavailable

Family tree tools

Automated genetic family tree (doesn't use actual family tree data)

Robust tools include ThruLines (reconstructs trees for matches with common ancestors)



Robust tools including Theory of Family Relativity (constructs possible tree relationships, with qualifying purchase)

Can you transfer your DNA here?

(Strategy: test with one company, then transfer to others)






Other features

Health reports also available

Build your family tree for free, but genealogy research requires subscription

Traits report also available

Also sells YDNA and mtDNA tests

Join projects to explore connections to surnames, ethnicities and places

Well-being reports also available

Build your family tree for free, but genealogy research requires subscription

More DNA tools available when you transfer and pay $29 upload fee


Does not include health add-ons or shipping

*Your purchase using our affiliate links costs you nothing extra but we get a little commission. Thank you! 

$119 USD

Regular price

$99 USD

Regular price

See current price for::

$79 USD

Regular price

$99 USD

Regular price

$89 USD

Regular price

The Best Genealogical DNA Test Kit for YOU

The best DNA test that YOU can take will be one that will help answer your questions.

Do you want to learn more about your ethnicity?

Test with a company that offers the most detailed look at your expected ethnic regions. Take a look at our best DNA test options for African, Asian, Scottish, Irish, and Portuguese ancestry.



Do you want to find birth relatives?

Test at the company where your biological relatives are more likely to have tested. In the U.S., AncestryDNA and 23andMe are the most popular. In the British Isles, AncestryDNA and 23andMe and Living DNA are all popular. In the rest of Europe, look to MyHeritage. In other areas globally, it could be MyHeritage, AncestryDNA (which recently expanded the list of countries where tests are sold) or 23andMe. Consider both which company is selling tests in that part of the world and how many people total have tested.

Do you want to build your family tree by networking with others with common ancestry?

Choose a testing company with strong tools for tree-building and exploring your matches (that’s AncestryDNA or MyHeritage).

If, like us, you want DNA results from more than one company, you should know that you can transfer your results to MyHeritage, Living DNA, or Family Tree DNA if you test with any of the other companies.

As you can see, there’s not one-answer-best-fits-everyone for DNA testing! If you’re not sure, see our full reviews of each testing company. When you buy a test, thank you for using our affiliate links above. Your purchase helps support this website at no additional cost to you.

Go back up to the table to choose my DNA test

I’ll Guide You Through This

We can help you decide where to test based on what you want to know. Then we can help you decipher your test results once you get them. We are Your DNA Guide! There’s a lot to figure out, and we’re here with you every step of the way. Not sure where to start? Check out our free guide, “4 Next Steps for Your DNA”.

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<a href="" target="_self">Diahan Southard</a>

Diahan Southard

As founder and CEO of Your DNA Guide, Diahan Southard has been teaching people how to find family history answers in their DNA for several years, and she's been in the genetic genealogy field since its infancy. Diahan teaches internationally, writes for popular magazines, consults with leading testing companies, is author of Your DNA Guide–The Book, and producer of Your DNA Guide–the Academy, an online learning experience.


  1. Kay Hall

    I have taken 4 DNA Tests but do not know how to use them
    Family Tree
    23 and Me

    • Diahan

      Well, Kay! That’s what we are all about! We have lots of resources here at Your DNA Guide, but you may want to start with our free download: That will give you a few things to start with.

  2. Marvin Von Renchler

    Since this is all relatively new, how does a DNA test attach us to anyone who hasnt taken a test? Im 67. have been dead for many years. They were born well over a hundred years ago and noone had dna tests. How can DNA testing find ANYONE but those who have taken tests?

    • Diahan Southard

      Good question.
      It really has to do with the fact that all of us are walking, living, breathing records of our ancestors. So when you and I match on a DNA test, it tells us something about the relationships of our ancestors, even though our ancestors have never tested. I hope that helps.

  3. Gail Johnson

    My maternal Canadian Irish great-grandmother had a very common name, Mary O’Neil, and was born in “English Canada” in 1838, according to her. She came to the United States “sometime” before border crossings were being recorded, and married my great-grandfather in DeKalb, IL, in 1861. I have several documents, photos, and personal stories about her after her marriage and the birth of her six living children. I know nothing about where she was born in Canada, who her parents or siblings were, or how her parents came to live in Canada. I did a DNA test on Ancestry, and also had my mother tested before she died. My brother, nephew, and daughter have also had an Ancestry DNA test done. Do you have any advice for me on trying to discover more about this elusive great-grandmother? I also have an extensive public family tree on Ancestry.

  4. Elizabeth

    Every branch of my family’s initial ancestors came to America from Eng, Scot and Wales from 1670 thru 1700. All into Virginia, some stayed there, most moving into SC, some stayed in NC or moved into GA except for a few who came straight to SC. So-I have taken an Ancestry test, so has my sister, one (female) maternal & male paternal 1st cousin. My sister and I are the ones working, me mostly of late. We have got our ancestors sorted out through 3rd -4th ancestors, and some further back. However, lots of endogamy in the colonial era.
    1. We would really like to “jump the pond” to get our ancestors located in Europe.
    2. Would YDNA help us?
    3. Is there another testing service that would assist us? Would you recommend that?

    4. My paternal and maternal 1st cousin has Huguenots in their line, would that explain the odd %2 Basque ethnicity
    PS. I am signed up for the endogamy course with y’all

    • Diahan Southard

      Elizabeth, yes, I think YDNA can always be helpful. Remember you can use it to investigate any male on your family tree, you just need to find the right person to be tested.

      To tackle endogamy, it is helpful to have lots of people tested. It sounds like you are well on your way to that, so just keep going. The more known cousins you have tested, the easier it is to sort out endogamy. And it sounds like you have already taken the best next step! You are enrolled in my course!

      As for the Huguenots, that is an interesting theory. I am actually not sure how they are showing up for others in their ethnicity.

    • Laura

      Like you I have unknown Basque ethnicity of 1.2%. Also, all my ancestors came to the colonies between 1613 and 1774 from England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. They came to Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania. As far as I know while I have Quaker ancestry I don’t have Huguenot ancestry. It was LivingDNA that listed me as having Basque ethnicity. Was it Ancestry that said that you have Basque ethnicity? Ancestry didn’t mention that I had any Basque ethnicity. I also had descendants of my ancestors who moved to GA. I’m also trying to cross the pond for research.

  5. Teresa Outley

    Loving the information on this site, you have done great job on the content.

  6. Sarit

    Thanks for the very informative article, do you happen to know if there are any companies that provide home ancient DNA tests?
    I took the Bronze Age DNA test (GenePlaza), which was a lot of fun, but I want to learn more.

    • Diahan Southard

      Family Tree DNA (FTDNA) does dabble a bit in that ancient DNA stuff. Have you tried YDNA or mtDNA testing at FTDNA? That can delve into the ancient as well as the modern.

  7. S.E

    I am currently 16 years old and was born in Morocco by an unknown father, my mother doesn’t remember anything about him, although it was a one-night stand, she said that his name was Abdekrim, but he may have lied about it. I really want to find him just to stop all the popping questions in my head, I know nothing about him, but I hope there’s a way I can find out who he is. Furthermore, I don’t know if your DNA service works in Morocco too, and I really hope it does. And if there is any other way it could be really helpful.

    • Danielle Francis

      Hi! Thanks for your comment. You can check the table above to see which DNA tests are offered in Morocco, we don’t provide any of the DNA tests ourselves, but we do offer education and consultation on how to understand your DNA results after taking a DNA test. I would recommend checking out this article:

  8. John D Rhoades

    I did my test with crigenetics but it only tells me ancestry way back . I’m looking for my father. My mother is deceased. I really need help

  9. Angela Allard

    Are there any companies that do blood spot testing? My son has passed away but I have blood spot cards available.

    • Diahan Southard

      There aren’t many companies that offer services like this, and those that do are pretty pricey. AND many of the major testing companies won’t let you upload these types of DNA results into their database. If you are really interested you can check out To the Letter DNA ( Usually what we recommend is to test another relative if they’re available.

  10. Deborah D Northrop

    Hi there! I enjoyed your presentation at the RootsTech Virtual conference. I have connected with a few savvy cousins. They have been very helpful to me. Two of my siblings have taken the 23 & Me test. I have chosen to take the Ancestry test.

    I am looking forward to you DNA seminar

    Debbi Morgan Northrop

    • Diahan Southard

      So glad you could join us at RootsTech this year, wasn’t it such a great event?! We can’t wait for you to join us in the webinar 🙂

  11. John Greenfield

    I think my 3x great grand parents were brother and sister, can this be determined from my DNA results?

    • Diahan Southard

      If you have enough descendants of those specific 3x great grandparents, then it is likely that you will be able to confirm that they were brother and sister. What you’ll be looking for is a higher amount than normal of shared cM between their descendants due to the multiple relationship/ pedigree collapse situation. For a more detailed walk-through of what to do, I would recommend our Endogamy Course (which also addresses pedigree collapse) or a Coaching session.

  12. Laura

    Diahan, To answer your question as to why I selected to be tested at Ancestry and LivingDNA was that the head of my local Family History Center would bring back DNA Kits from RootsTech. She attended RootsTech every year and brought back DNA Kits for people who had requested them. She would often have a suitcase full of them. I’d been following the Paper Trail for decades going back to the 1970s and was hoping DNA would help me break down my Brick Wall. I have maternal 3rd great-grandparents, John and E. Smith, who were born around 1800 in Virginia. I haven’t been able to find them on any record except listed on the Marriage Record of their son. Also, as I knew that I had at least two maternal lines from England I chose LivingDNA which at that time didn’t allow uploading of DNA. My maternal grandmother’s maternal lines were both from England. Her ancestor, John Clay, was at the Muster at Jamestown and arrived in Virginia in 1613. Her ancestor, David Wheelhouse, and his family Emigrated from Kingston on Hull, England to Norfolk, Virginia in 1774. They were my earliest and latest immigrant ancestors. While I’d expected to learn where my ancestors came from in England I was surprised to find that I had over 85% UK ancestry. Besides England it showed that I also had Ireland, Scotland, and Wales ancestry. I plan on figuring out which of my lines were from the over a dozen different locations that LivingDNA listed for me in the UK. I’ve also downloaded my DNA and uploaded it to MyHeritage, FamilyTreeDNA, Geneanet, etc. I’d like to find someone on my paternal line who could take a YDNA test. In the meantime I’ve ordered a mtDNA test.


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