Pregnancy Test Readers: How to Read Pregnancy Tests Like a Pro

Pregnancy Test Readers: How to Read Pregnancy Tests Like a Pro

Ever found yourself squinting at a pregnancy test, moving it into different lights, or even taking photos of it to triple check you’re reading the result right?

You’re not alone.

Sometimes, those pesky little lines can be darn hard to read… which is why a lot of you turn to our Peanut Community for pregnancy line analysis. 🔍

But are there easier ways to read pregnancy tests?

And how should you read a digital pregnancy test compared to a stick?

Relax — we’ve got your back. ❤️

In this article: 📝

  • Types of pregnancy tests
  • Digital pregnancy tests
  • Pregnancy line test sticks
  • Pregnancy line test strips
  • Pregnancy test kits
  • How to read a Clearblue pregnancy test
  • Pregnancy test readers

Types of pregnancy tests

So, first off, let’s go through the different types of pregnancy tests:

🩸 Blood pregnancy tests: Usually done to confirm a positive pregnancy test after receiving a positive urine test result — you can’t do this one at home, it has to be done by a qualified medical pro. And, yes, having a blood pregnancy test does involve getting your blood drawn, usually using a needle. Blood pregnancy tests are 98.9% sensitive and can detect a hCG level of 1 to 2 mIU/mL (and above).

💧 Urine pregnancy tests: Your standard at-home pregnancy test you can buy at your local drugstore — this is normally what most people mean when they’re talking about taking a pregnancy test. These tests are 95% sensitive and can detect a hCG level of 25 mIU/mL (and above).

And with these home tests, there are a few options you can choose from, so let’s dive in.


Digital pregnancy tests

These ultra-modern tests swap out the classic traditional lines for a screen showing your results in word form: either ‘Pregnant’, or ‘Not pregnant’.

With digital tests, they’re usually easier to read, since they take away at least some of the guesswork so you don’t get ‘line eyes’ — when you’ve stared at the line on your test for so long, you can’t figure out what it means. 😵‍💫

But, despite their convenience, they’re definitely the most expensive option on the market, so you may want to explore other options, rather than opting for this pricey pick every time. 💰

How to read digital tests

Digital tests are the easiest pregnancy tests to read, so they’re the best option if you want to make it all as clear as possible — no line eyes here!

It will either read ‘Pregnant’ or ‘Not pregnant’, so no need for squinting and second-guessing.


Pregnancy line test sticks

The OG of pregnancy tests, standing the test of time.

Pregnancy test sticks display results by lines and are the most traditional type of test.

You can get them in either pink or blue dyes to show your results.

These are usually made so they’re easier to use while you’re peeing — you put the detecting part into your stream of urine (usually for 5-10 seconds).

One of the many elegant moments of trying to conceive. 🙃

How to read pregnancy test sticks

First things first — get familiar with which line is which.

The first line to appear is the control line, which shows you the test is working (always a good start).

If a second line appears, that’s a positive result.

Some pregnancy test sticks show the results as two lines (if positive), but others can show positive results as a plus sign (➕), crossing the lines.

For these types of pregnancy tests, the horizontal line is the control line, and if a vertical one joins it to make a plus sign, that’s a positive result.

A word of warning: make sure you read the result in the time specified in the instructions — if you wait too long, you might see an evaporation line.

These can make things even more confusing — they look like a positive result, but they’re actually caused by evaporation.

Finding out a positive was just an evap line while you’re TTC can be super confusing and heartbreaking.

It’s okay to feel frustrated or disappointed.

And if you want to talk to other women who get it, you’re always welcome on Peanut.


Pregnancy line test strips

Pregnancy test strips are pretty similar to sticks in the way they display results using lines and colored dye.

But the way they’re a little different is that they’re designed to be dipped into a cup of urine to produce the result, rather than using a stream of urine.

This means they’re usually smaller and a bit flimsier than your average test stick.

Strips can be a great option if you’re TTC and need to take a couple of tests each month — they’re much cheaper (especially compared to digital) saving you some dollar!

How to read pregnancy test strips

Similar to reading pregnancy sticks, strips show results in the form of two lines:

  • One control line (this just lets you know that the test is valid and not out of date or faulty)
  • A second line if the test is positive, showing that you’re pregnant

One line may appear lighter than the other, but they should both be the same thickness.

A lighter line may mean that you’re testing early in your pregnancy, so at that point, your hCG levels are lower.

🔍 Read more: Pregnancy Test Line Progression

Pregnancy test kits


If you’re actively trying to conceive, pregnancy test kits could be a good choice for you.

Packed with lots of test strips and ovulation strips, these kits are meant for people who are starting their TTC journey and want to accurately track their cycle, too.

So, how should you read pregnancy test kits?

That will depend on whether the tests in the kit are digital, sticks, or strips — so scroll up to see the guides and tips for whichever ones you’ve got. ⬆️

🔍 Read more: How to Tell if You’re Ovulating

How to read a Clearblue pregnancy test

So, wondering which Clearblue pregnancy test to choose, and how to read the results?

We’ve got you. 🔍

ClearBlue certainly doesn’t leave you in the lurch with its choices of pregnancy tests…

From the ultra early pregnancy tests (testing 6 days before your missed period), to the pregnancy test with weeks indicator (telling you how many weeks pregnant you are), you’re never in short supply.

We’ve listed the most popular and how to read them below: 👇

  • Rapid detection pregnancy test: With easy-to-read results, 2 lines mean you’re pregnant, and 1 line means you’re not. These tests look for a hCG sensitivity of 25mIU/ml (and above).
  • Digital early detection at home: With “unmistakably clear results”, read in 3 minutes either ‘Pregnant’ or ‘Not pregnant’.
  • Advanced digital ovulation test: ****Did you know you can also use Clearblue tests to detect your ovulation, too?! Over “99% accurate”, digital smiley faces tell you when you’re ovulating. 😊

Pregnancy test readers

You’re all clued up on how to read your pregnancy tests — congrats! 🏆

But hold your horses, because there’s still some margin for error — yep, we’re talking about line eyes again.

So how can you accurately read your pregnancy test results?

Can I use my phone to check my pregnancy tests?

In the modern age of technology, we can use our phones for literally anything.

And that could extend to reading pregnancy test results too…

But, bigggg caveat — chances are if you have to whack the brightness up, and set the contrast to max, you’re probably looking at an evap line.

Is there an app that can read pregnancy tests?

Another way to use your phone is by downloading specially designed pregnancy reader apps.

(Again, how did we ever live without our phones?! 🤣)

There are some great pregnancy test checker apps out… all you need to do is upload a photo of your test and the tool uses photo effects to visually enhance any second line… clever, right?

Here’s a list of our favorites. 👇

Inventive Mobile pregnancy test checker

Tweak and edit your pregnancy test photos to enhance that potential positive line.

With a 4.7 star rating, people say, “This is the best app for tweaking”, and it’s, “Simple, easy to use, and only has the essential tweaking functions that you need”. ⭐

Simply, take a photo of your test and let the app guide you on the best ways to edit it. 📸

This app is totally free, too, which is helpful — but you can purchase ‘coins’ within the app to add on any additional tweaking features!

Check out the Inventive Mobile pregnancy test checker!

First Response pregnancy test app

So, we’re gonna be real, this is pretty cool…

First Response have developed a pregnancy test app that allows you to get the results straight to your phone.

Technology inside the pregnancy stick connects via Bluetooth to the app on your phone, giving the clear answer — pregnant, or not pregnant.

The app even entertains you while you wait through those excruciating three minutes of waiting time with funny, educational, or calming videos.

But, as you could’ve probably predicted, this is definitely on the pricier side, costing between $14.99 to $21.99. 💰

Possibly out of the budget for frequent testers (shout-out to all the TTCs out there!).

Find out more about the First Response pregnancy test app!


Although we’re not technically a pregnancy test reader app, we are an app that has groups made for people to help read your rest results.

It’s a safe space for 24/7 support from women going through the same thing you are, so you know you’re not alone. ❤️

So if you want to find friends who are on their own TTC journeys, swap advice, and share pregnancy test results, you’re always welcome to join us on Peanut.

And if you’re still keen to find a pregnancy test reader app, you can also use Peanut to help you shop around — our Community of women is always happy to help!

So now you’ve got all you need to decipher those pregnancy test results like a pro!

But remember, line eyes are a real thing, and even the most experienced pregnancy test users can get confused.

So if you want a fresh pair of eyes to help decode your test results, you’ll find help and support from our Peanut Community

We’re with you all the way. 🥜


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