Finding Your Roots.

23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe

This post is brought to you by CJ Affiliate’s VIP Content Service. Thank you 23andMe for sponsoring this post. All content and opinions expressed here are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.

Today’s post is a little bit different than usual, but something I am pretty excited about! Do you ever wonder about your origins? My mom has always been really into genealogy and spent years tracing our family history back – to the point where we learned that both of my parents had very distant relatives on the Mayflower. My dad’s relative was actually employed by my mom’s relative, which I think is so cool and funny! But I am a naturally very curious person and have always wondered what my DNA results would look like, so when 23andMe reached out, I jumped at the opportunity. I have a general idea of what my results will look like (mostly English/German – I think?) but I don’t know much more than that.

I just sent my DNA kit back this week and will be reporting back on the results in the coming month or two (!!!) but in the meantime, 23andMe is running an amazing sweepstakes, with prizes valued at up to $20,000! 23andMe’s Golden23SM Sweepstakes is giving 23 custom trips to 23 winners, based on the winners’ individual DNA results. You can enter two ways – Buy a 23andMe kit, or enter (here!) for a free online chance to win. The trip is all expenses paid (airfare, hotel, custom itinerary, etc)… talk about a trip of a lifetime!!!

Ends 8/3/17. No purchase necessary. Visit this page for official rules.*

23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe

23andMe is a personal genetic service that helps you understand what your 23 pairs of chromosomes (your DNA) say about your health, traits and ancestry. When you take their test you will receive a snapshot view of your DNA with more than 75 detailed reports on their health, traits and ancestry! You’ll be able to see the percentage breakdown of your ancestry from 31 different populations. Maybe you’ve always know you’re part Irish, part German, and part Japanese. But what if your DNA results told you that you were also part Finnish and part African? What would you do? (Hint: Plan a trip??)

23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe

To me, it would make such a difference knowing that a place that I’m visiting is actually a part of my own DNA/cultural history… it makes you more invested! I mean, I will pretty much use any excuse I can to travel more, but in this case, knowing your own ancestry, and planning a trip around those results will make it even more meaningful. It isn’t just about checking off tourist sites… it becomes about understanding yourself a little bit better and visiting a place that is actually a part of you.

23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe 23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe

23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe 23andMe DNA Testing | The Stripe

*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A purchase will not improve your chances of winning. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. states and D.C., 18 or older. Sweepstakes ends at 11:59 pm PT on 8/3/17. You must complete the 23andMe Personal Genetic Service™ to qualify to win. For free entry method and complete details, see Official Rules that govern this Sweepstakes. Number of travel destinations subject to Official Rules. Sponsor: 23andMe, Inc. Void where prohibited.

photography by Trent Bailey.

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  1. I’ve always wondered about my roots, too! It’d be interesting to know for sure!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    8.2.17 Reply
  2. I’m extremely interested in my family’s history (my dad’s cousin has been able to track our family history for 10 generations!) and have always been curious about what I would find when taking a test like this. I know a lot about my dad’s side but not my mom’s so I may finally need to take the plunge and purchase this DNA test!


    8.2.17 Reply
  3. Such a cool idea for a sweepstakes! I’d love to win a trip to the Netherlands, where my family primarily comes from 🙂

    Briana |

    8.2.17 Reply
  4. Joe and I did this recently. 23 and Me is such a wonderful resource for adoptees like me. In addition to gaining information about unknown medical history and definitively knowing my ethnicity, I’m hoping to connect with biological family members who may have already taken the test and be in their databases. If someone is there and has opted in to connect, it could circumvent potentially years of doing a traditional search through my adoptive agencies. It really is a gift! I can’t wait to get my results back next month, obvi 🙂

    8.2.17 Reply
    • Oh my gosh I hadn’t even thought about that – yes!!! Wow.

      Excited to hear your results!!!!

      8.3.17 Reply
      • Got them back yesterday. And, it was I always had suspected but could never confirm: I am not 100% Korean!!

        8.9.17 Reply
  5. Cami:

    Hi Grace! I’ve been following your blog for years and love all your posts. However, this post bothers me because I don’t think you’re giving a thorough commentary on the nuances of 23andMe’s terms and conditions. Mainly, 23andMe can sell your genetic information to biotech companies, pharma companies, and others ( Many people find to be a big privacy breech and could have lasting effects in the long run (ie. approval for life insurance, medical insurance, loans, etc.). It seems like there’s a consent document involved in order to share your data with third parties, but if so, I would want to know more about it. I’m all for personalized DNA tests (I’m a graduate student in biomedical sciences!), but I think these terms are something that should be seriously considered if you are going to use this service.

    8.2.17 Reply
    • Thanks Cami. I’ve reached out to the brand to find out a response from them!

      8.3.17 Reply
    • Hi Cami!

      So I reached out to the brand about this as I was concerned… wanted to share their response with you/anyone else who is interested:

      As stated in our Privacy Statement, we will not sell, lease, or rent your individual-level information (i.e., information about a single individual’s genotypes, diseases or other traits/characteristics) to any third-party or to a third-party for research purposes without your explicit consent.

      The article you included details our Parkinson’s disease initiative, where we partnered with Genentech on a study designed to analyze whole genome sequencing data for approximately 3,000 individuals selected from participants in the 23andMe Parkinson’s Research Initiative and their first degree relatives. The goal of this study is to identify novel targets for Parkinson’s disease therapies. You can read more here:

      In order to participate in this initiative and study with Genentech, and to allow us to share individual level information with Genentech for this purpose, each participant must have given explicit consent to do so through an additional consent document authorizing the use of individual-level genetic information, supplementary to our Research Consent Document.

      As you noted, this is touched on in the article:

      “Because Genentech is interested in individual-level information, 23andMe would need additional consent from these 3,000 customers.”

      We built all of our systems to maximize protections of individual level data and we have a number of safeguards in place to ensure confidentiality. All data in the research computing environment are disconnected from participant contact or identifying information and are coded with a unique research ID. Additionally, 23andMe has agreements with all research partners regarding the security and storage of de-identified, individual-level data that is shared outside 23andMe.

      I hope you found this information helpful. If you have additional questions please feel free to reply directly to this email. You are also welcome to contact us at


      8.4.17 Reply
  6. Denise Atwood:

    love this idea and the fact it makes travelling even more interesting! Can’t wait to hear the results! xo Mom

    8.3.17 Reply
  7. Cathleen:

    I think this is the one who claims some people are part neanderthal. Loses all credibility with something like that!

    8.3.17 Reply
    • Hi Cathleen! I definitely don’t think that is the case with this one!! I will ask but that sounds like hearsay. I just sent my test in and can’t wait to see what the results are.

      8.4.17 Reply
      • Cathleen:

        I’m not sure about that. One youtube channel had them or one with a very similar name as a sponsor, and the host had his done. He mentioned it, and I remember hearing it another time. Hope that’s not the case with this company.

        8.6.17 Reply
        • Hi Cathleen! I heard back some more info on the brand… see below – it’s actually pretty interesting:

          From what you’ve described, she is referring to our Neandethal report.

          Neanderthals were a group of ancient humans who lived in Europe and Western Asia. They are the closest evolutionary relatives of modern humans, but they went extinct about 40,000 years ago. The first Neanderthals arrived in Europe about 200,000 years ago. Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis) and modern humans (Homo sapiens) lived alongside each other for thousands of years. Research tells us that they interbred with humans around 60,000 years ago. Evidence of Neanderthal DNA is now found in traces among modern humans.

          23andMe can tell you how much of your DNA is derived from Neanderthals and how that compares to others. We can even point to specific Neanderthal DNA that is associated with traits that you might have – like height and back hair.

          They can review our help center article Neanderthal Report Basics here:

          For a more in-depth read, they can review our white paper here:

          8.7.17 Reply
  8. Cy:

    My dad, sister and I all did this recently. Dad’s side is Armenian and mom’s mostly Norwegian. We thought there was German on Dad’s side, but no he is all middle eastern with Italian and Greek thrown in. I was thrilled to find out I’m 17% Italian, one of my favorite countries. I’ve been to Tuscany twice and am planning a trip to Rome, Venice and lake Como next year! So interesting. Who knows what surprise you may get?

    8.4.17 Reply
    • That’s so cool, Cy! Thank you for sharing. I am so excited… wondering if I will be surprised!

      8.7.17 Reply