By Phd Scientist and Proov Inventor, Amy Beckley
Please note that opinions represented herein are those solely of the author based on her personal experience. Amy purchased all kits herself and no compensation was provided.
Did you know there are 50+ different OPK brands on the market? That’s a lot to choose from! And they all do mostly the same thing: predict when you are most fertile, which is very important information when it comes to trying to conceive! This made me wonder if some OPKs work better than others. Are some more or less accurate? How do I choose the best brand for me and my journey?
The scientist in me decided to purchase 13 of the most popular OPKs and test them all. I’m excited to share my results with you, but please be aware they are just that — my results. I’ll share with you the tests that worked best for me and why.
First things first…buying all 13 OPK tests:
- Eveline Ovulation Tests
- Pregmate LH Test Strips
- MomMed LH Test Strips
- Easy@Home LH Test Strips
- Premom Semi-Quantitative LH Test Strips
- Femometer LH Test Strips
- Pearl Fertility
- Clearblue Advanced Digitals
- Wondfo LH Test Strips
- Mira Fertility
- EPT Digitals
- First Response Ovulation Tests
All 13 test kits came with their own set of instructions. Unlike those kitchen appliance instructions that often get tossed in a drawer to collect dust, instructions are really important when it comes to fertility tools, so I sat down to read all 13. This was no simple feat. Even though each test did pretty much the same thing — predict the fertile window and measure LH — each instruction manual had slightly different variations. I learned how and when to test with each brand to make sure my results were as accurate as possible. I also downloaded apps for the corresponding tests, though not all brands had a technological component.
As another measurement, I purchased a basal body thermometer, which I used alongside apps that could track BBT.
I also did hormonal blood work as a way to double check my ovulation test results. If you’re ever interested in getting your own blood work done, I highly recommend this website — it is super easy and cheap to do!
Finally, I made sure to have my Proov tests handy to confirm ovulation after the OPKs showed peak fertility. I was ready to test (according to the instructions, of course!).
The following is my log from each cycle day. Be sure to note that some cycle days have AM and PM logs — some tests required first morning urine, while others called for afternoon urine, so I was testing twice a day. If the results were the same morning and evening, I just combined them into a single day.
Of all 13 brands of OPKs I tried, only two did not result in a positive result: EPT Digital and Mira. Both were able to detect an increase of LH over the other days, but EPT’s readout was “NO” everyday and on the day of my LH surge, Mira only gave me a “high” reading. All other brands showed peak fertility at the same time, although I found some easier to read than others. The good news is that almost all LH tests were accurate for me and detected the surge at the right time.
However, this doesn’t necessarily mean ovulation was healthy. This is why it is so important to predict and confirm healthy ovulation with Proov!
In my case, a progesterone blood test confirmed ovulation, but Proov showed that ovulation was “weak.” This means PdG (urine metabolite of progesterone) levels did not remain elevated during the entire 7-10 day window after peak fertility. Proov tests were only positive on day 7 after peak fertility and returned to negative on days 8, 9, and 10. This exact ovulatory issue is what prevented me from conceiving on my own all those years ago and it’s what I was able to solve with a simple supplement.
In general, the individual test strips ranged from 30 cents to $4 per strip. I personally preferred cheaper strips because they were just as accurate, but cost-effective for testing more than once per day. Note that these are just my personal opinions. You may disagree or have a different brand you prefer, which is totally okay! Every woman and cycle is different!
Strip Tests: Pregmate LH Test Strips, MomMed LH Test Strips, Femometer LH Test Strips, Wonfo LH Test Strips, Easy@Home LH Test Strips
In this category, Femometer was my favorite brand. Their tests were cost-effective and allowed me to test multiple times per day — which the scientist in me loved! I also found these to be the easiest strips to read. The test line was almost non-existent on negative tests, so the positive test was distinct once I hit peak fertility. You can see how each of the different tests look below.
Midstream Tests: Eveline Ovulation Tests, Natalist, First Response Ovulation Tests
These tests are different from other LH tests in that they require midstream urine, meaning you pee directly on the strip. My favorite midstream test was Natalist. I found these results to be clear and accurate. It was really easy to tell the difference between negative and positive results, which I appreciated.
Tests with Readers: Mira Fertility, EPT Digitals, Premom Quantitative LH Test Strips, Eveline Ovulation Tests
Of these tests, Premom Semi-Quantitative LH Test strips were my favorite. They were cost-effective and the Premom app was great at reading them.
Longest Fertile Window: Clearblue Advanced Digitals and Pearl Fertility
I really like both Clearblue and Pearl, so for this category, it’s a tie! Clearblue Advanced Digitals measures two hormones: LH and E1G, which is the urine metabolite of estrogen. Results are shown as a circle (low fertility), a flashing smiley face (high fertility), or a static smiley face (peak fertility). These simple results made the tests super easy to read. Because Clearblue also measures E1G, it was able to give me a 5-day long fertile window versus the 1-2 day window only LH tests showed. I found these tests to be accurate, easy to use and interpret.
Pearl, on the other hand, includes 15 LH tests and 15 FSH tests. Pearl also has an app that detects LH and FSH changes over time. I loved being able to test daily and see the hormones rising or falling on the chart. Since this kit measured FSH and LH, it also gave me a longer fertile window of 5 days. The visual charting of the app allowed me to watch FSH open the fertile window and LH close it — pretty cool in my opinion! Not to mention, the Pearl app can read and chart Proov tests, too!
Plan for Next Cycle
Throughout this whole experiment, I found a few brands that I’m definitely going to use again.
The Premom app is great and can read and record results from a variety of LH test brands, not just their own. I found the app to work well with Premom Quantitative LH Test Strips and Easy@Home LH Test Strips.
Femometer LH Test Strips showed the clearest change from negative to positive and for me, were the easiest to read. I also liked that I was able to test multiple times per day with these strips.
As I explained above, Clearblue Advanced Digital and Pearl Fertility both showed the longest fertile window. I found both of these tests to be accurate. A longer fertile window gives the most opportunities for intercourse, which is critical when TTC.
Finally, I am of course going to continue confirming ovulation with Proov PdG Test Strips. I mentioned this earlier, but I’ll say it again — predicting and confirming ovulation are equally as important — especially for someone like me, in which weak ovulation may be a concern. If I were trying to conceive, this is definitely something I would see my doctor about as weak ovulation can make it more difficult to successfully conceive. Proov also comes with an app, which can be helpful when tracking ovulation with strips.
Have any questions for Amy about her Epic OPK Experiment? Reach out to us at email@example.com!