First Trimester (weeks 1-12)

Early gender testing in pregnancy – your most-searched questions answered (and the gold standard home test to know)

Emma Harpham in partnership with SneakPeek  |   9 Jul 2024

For many of us, finding out our little one’s gender represents a huge milestone in our pregnancy journey – whether we’ve come at parenthood from a fertility struggle or not.

In days gone by, this moment would have been pushed to the 20-week ultrasound scan, but in 2024, it’s possible to find out much sooner, without having to make an appointment with your maternity care team.

Right now, the gold standard in early gender testing in pregnancy is SneakPeek. They’ve created the #1 OBGYN-recommended early gender test that can be taken at home, and tells you fetal sex starting at 6 weeks with over 99% accuracy.

TRB founder Eloise took their test 7 weeks into her most recent twin pregnancy, to see if there was a boy in the mix. SneakPeek looks for male chromosomes in mom’s blood. If they are found, at least one baby is a boy. If none are found, both babies are girls.

“With the twins being sperm donor-conceived, we found that getting an idea of the genders of the babies helped us bond, and made the whole process feel a lot more real!” she told me.

SneakPeek is also the only at-home test of its kind that conducts research through independent clinics, with published studies in scientific journals.

So with this in mind, I caught up with their team for the latest on at home early gender testing in pregnancy and the science behind it, and to answer some of your most searched questions. 

Read on as we cover off:

  • How early can you get a gender test
  • How long does a gender blood test take
  • Can a gender blood test be wrong
  • How accurate is the SneakPeek Gender Test
  • And more

Editor’s note – We’ve used sex and gender interchangeably throughout this Q&A to reflect how people usually talk about the topic in relation to pregnancy in particular. However, it’s important to know the difference: sex is about biological differences, and gender involves the roles, behaviors, and identities that society links to being male or female.

Now, over to the SneakPeek team.

early gender testing in pregnancy

Your questions about early gender testing in pregnancy

How do gender blood tests work?

Gender blood tests work by analyzing cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA) found in the mother’s bloodstream. cffDNA is released into your blood by the placenta during your pregnancy.

The SneakPeek Gender Test specifically looks for the presence of Y chromosomes. If Y chromosomes are detected, it indicates that your baby is male. If no Y chromosomes are detected, your baby is female. 

This method relies on the fact that only males carry Y chromosomes, making it a really reliable indicator of your baby’s sex.

How early can you get a gender test? 

There are various gender testing methods available at different points in early pregnancy. Chorionic villus sampling (CVS) is offered at around 10 weeks if you’re thought to have an increased risk of having a baby with a genetic condition, but it is an invasive diagnostic method that carries miscarriage risks. More traditional methods, like ultrasound, are offered at 20 weeks

However, you can take the SneakPeek Gender Test as early as 6 weeks into pregnancy. This early detection is possible because enough cffDNA is present in the mother’s blood at this stage to determine the sex. 

This allows you to find out your baby’s gender much earlier than all of the existing science-based methods.

Who can do baby gender testing at home?

Anyone who is at least six weeks into their pregnancy can use the SneakPeek Gender Test, and that includes if you’re breastfeeding, too. Since SneakPeek is a DNA-based test, hormonal changes due to breastfeeding won’t affect the results.

You can also take the test if you’ve previously had a boy. Fetal DNA clears from mom’s blood within 2-3 days after birth, so a previous boy will not affect the current baby’s results.

The test is designed to be safe and effective for expectant mothers.

How accurate is the SneakPeek gender test

How long does a gender blood test take?

The time it takes to receive results from a gender blood test varies. 

Generally, SneakPeek offers a fast turnaround time. For their standard test, results are typically available the day after the sample arrives at the lab

We also offer a FastTrack option within the US, where results can be provided the same day the sample is received. This quick processing is one of SneakPeek’s advantages, offering results within days rather than weeks.

Can a gender blood test be wrong?

No gender blood test can claim 100% accuracy, and there is always a small risk of contamination when the sample is taken.

To minimize the risk of contamination and ensure the most accurate results, it’s crucial to follow the sample collection instructions carefully – we’ll go into more detail on this below.

How accurate is the SneakPeek gender test? 

 The SneakPeek gender test is over 99% accurate

This high level of accuracy is backed by multiple studies and clinical trials, which have confirmed the reliability of SneakPeek’s methodology in detecting fetal sex as early as six weeks into pregnancy.

Does the SneakPeek test hurt?

The SneakPeek test involves a simple blood collection process that is generally not painful. 

There are two methods:

  • The Lancet Kit – this involves an easy  finger prick
  • The Snap Kit – pictured here, this uses a microneedle device to collect blood from the upper arm and is designed to be virtually painless and stress-free

The kits have everything you need to make sample collection speedy and straightforward.

SneakPeek early gender blood test

How easy is it to contaminate SneakPeek?

Contamination of the SneakPeek Gender Test sample is relatively easy to avoid with proper preparation. 

It is important to sanitize the collection area, wash hands thoroughly, and follow the provided instructions meticulously. Ensuring a clean collection site on the upper arm is essential for the Snap kit. 

Following these steps helps prevent male DNA contamination and ensures accurate results​.

The bottom line

Finding out your baby’s sex is an intensely personal experience, and usually makes the whole process seem a lot more real – so be prepared to feel lots!

Want to test? SneakPeek is offering TRB readers $10 off the Lancet Standard test, $15 off the Snap Standard test, or $20 off the Snap FastTrack test with code: THERIBBONBOX1.

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