Looking for a firsthand, honest account of the SneakPeek gender determination blood test? I’ve got it for you, along with how it works, what’s the cost, and when you can use it in pregnancy. This is an unsponsored, completely unbiased review from an actual user.
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I am one of the innately curious types of people. What can I say – I’m an enneagram 5 (“the researcher”). I always want to know a lot about things that interest me. And my unborn child? Definitely something that interests me. So as soon as I saw the second line appear on the pregnancy test, I was instantly wondering about the little poppy-seed-sized life forming inside me. Who was this person going to be? What color were the as-yet unformed eyes going to be? And most importantly – what were we going to name it?! Clearly, that depended more on whether it was a boy or a girl.
With my first daughter, I impatiently waited until I was sixteen weeks along, then paid for a private scan. But I had considered doing the SneakPeek blood test. When I got pregnant with my second, I decided to go ahead and try SneakPeek’s at-home test, and I thought I’d share my experience and observations here.
How much does SneakPeek cost?
Normally, you can purchase it for $79 for the standard version, or $149 for the Fast Track version. What’s the difference? The Fast Track version includes USPS Priority Mail Express shipping both to you and back, plus you get bumped to the front of the line for sample processing.
They do have sales occasionally, usually for holidays. I bought mine for $59 by using a Mother’s Day sale on their website.
When can you use SneakPeek At-Home?
You only need to be eight weeks to use it – if you’re in doubt of how far along you are exactly, you should probably wait a little bit longer. If taken too early, it will only find your own female DNA, and may give a false girl result.
How long is SneakPeek good for?
The test is good for a year, so if you buy it in anticipation of a pregnancy, or order it and lose the pregnancy, you can keep it and wait.
How does SneakPeek work?
According to their website, SneakPeek looks for the presence of fetal DNA in the mother’s blood. After eight weeks, the placenta is established and fetal DNA is mingling with the maternal blood. The test looks for male DNA in the sample. If male DNA is present, the baby is a boy – if it’s not there, the baby is a girl.
How easy is SneakPeek to use?
This is going to depend on how easy it is for you to prick your finger and collect blood.
The actual testing procedure is to scrub your hands, put a rubber band around your wrist as a light tourniquet, use a lancet to prick your finger, and get the blood into the included tube until you reach the line. I’m not easily flappable but even I hesitated with poking my finger with the lancet. If you’re diabetic, it’s probably a breeze. Then you shake the test up to make sure the anticoagulant/preservative is distributed, send it off, and wait for your results. It’s honestly a very easy process, provided you bleed enough (if you don’t, the kit does come with three lancets).
How quickly do you get the results?
This depends on the version you got. The Fast Track version allows you to order the kit, send it back with Priority Express mail, then they bump you to the top of the list and will process your result and send you an email the same day they receive it.
In my case, I bought the standard version, mailed it on Thursday, got a notice it had been received by their lab on Monday, and got the results emailed to me on Tuesday. If I had taken it on a Monday and hadn’t had the weekend in between, it may have been a bit faster.
What happens if you do SneakPeek wrong?
If they can’t process the result, or the results are inconclusive, or something happens like the anticoagulant isn’t properly mixed with the blood and the blood clots past the point of usefulness, they will email you and send you a fresh test kit to try again.
What’s the difference between the “at home” and “clinical” version?
The at-home test is something you can do yourself. It’s less expensive. The clinical version is a blood draw at participating clinics. There’s an extensive list on their website. Pricing may vary but is usually a bit higher – I saw it starting at $129 for next-day results and $149 for same-day results.
Because SneakPeek does rely on getting a sterile sample (more on that in a minute), the clinical version is going to be less prone to contamination. That may be important.
How accurate is SneakPeek At-Home?
According to their website, at eight weeks, SneakPeek is 99.1% accurate. At nine weeks, it’s 99.6% accurate.
I think it’s likely the clinical versions are that accurate. In the instructions for the at-home version, it’s very clear on not allowing any male to contaminate it. From the box that states “FEMALES ONLY” to warning you not to even pet a male animal, it communicates that any contamination of male DNA could cause a wrong result.
My SneakPeek Experience
I think this is as good a place as any to talk about my experience with SneakPeek. I ordered the test the week of Mother’s Day, after finding out I was pregnant on May 4. I did my calculations and waited until I was confident I was in at least the eighth week of my pregnancy, and then waited a few more days just to be sure – in the end, I was eight weeks, four days when I took it.
I have a background with some lab and medical experiences, so I know that importance of a clean workspace and avoiding cross contamination. I cleaned my workspace (my half of the bathroom counter) twice. I removed the top of the box and set it top-down on the counter to give myself an additional place to set supplies. I scrubbed my hands as directed and used my right arm to turn the faucet off so I wouldn’t contaminate my hands by accident. I then removed the contents of the box, followed the directions, and stopped in at the post office half an hour later to send my blood sample.
I feel like I did a fairly good job of following the directions, in other words.
When I got the results, it came back as a boy. I will freely admit, I was hoping for a girl. I dealt with a lot of gender disappointment (and of course, I researched it, did some self-examination, and wrote about it). But I told my husband I didn’t fully trust the results, and I wouldn’t until I saw the anatomy ultrasound. He thought it was just because I wanted a girl – but I was just uneasy about the possibility of cross contamination.
When I was eighteen weeks, I found two stories on my Facebook timeline, in two different due-date groups, of expectant mothers who had taken SneakPeek, gotten boy results, only to find they were having a girl when they went to the anatomy ultrasound.
I’m sure you can see where this is going. I went for my anatomy ultrasound and noticed pretty quickly that I wasn’t noticing anything. The technician confirmed it was a girl.
So – my experience with SneakPeek was that I spent eleven weeks, thinking I was having a boy, only for it to actually be a girl!
Is SneakPeek worth it?
You might think that my automatic response would be “no.” It isn’t – quite.
I told my husband from the start that I would treat a girl result as likely valid, and a boy result as suspicious, due to the potential for any cross contamination. Had I gotten a girl result, I would have been okay with that. Getting a boy result left me with a “wait and see” attitude (that I was right to have).
I think this is a fun option to have. If your insurance covers NIPT (non-invasive prenatal testing), I would say wait the extra couple of weeks and go that route instead. The clinical option is probably more likely to be correct because there is less possibility of cross-contamination, but for the cost, I think I would rather just wait and get a private ultrasound done, and then at least I get pictures of my baby to go with it.
It’s totally up to you whether you want to use it or not. I definitely don’t think the Fast Track option is worth the extra money – if you’re having to wait weeks to use it anyway, what’s another couple of days? If you do buy it, I would suggest the standard version – but maybe I’m just cheap, lol.
They do offer a money-back guarantee if you receive the wrong result – I believe they have you send in a copy of the birth certificate. I’ll update this after the baby’s born and I experience how difficult that might be.
Would I use SneakPeek again?
Honestly, at this point I don’t know if I’ll have another after this. I’d like one more, my husband’s got mixed feelings, but I do recognize that pregnancy is hard on my body (it’s hard on any body!) and I’m not getting any younger.
If I do have another baby, I’ll likely be old enough to qualify for NIPT through my insurance, so that may be a route I take. Otherwise, I’ll get a private ultrasound, like I did for my oldest daughter.
Overall, I think SneakPeek is a fun idea, but I wouldn’t go on a shopping spree based on the results. If knowing your baby’s gender that early is important to you, I would suggest the clinical version. I definitely can’t advocate for the SneakPeek At-Home test as something everyone should do.