When you’re trying to conceive, being informed about the best time for it is key.
And the easiest way to track your cycle and predict ovulation in advance is to use ovulation test kits.
An ovulation test detects hormonal changes that signal about ovulation, thereby helping you to detect the most fertile days and increase the chances of getting pregnant.
So, take a look at 5 best ovulation test kits right below as well as some tips on how to use them most effectively!
5 Best Ovulation Kits Reviewed
According to user reviews, Easy@Home is one of the best ovulation test kits on the market today. In fact, it’s not just an ovulation predictor but a complete solution for women who are trying to get pregnant naturally.
The kit consists of ovulation and pregnancy test strips and is supported by a free app to track your results.
So, the test detects the LH surge in your urine sample, thus tracking your fertility peak and providing you with the information about the highest chances of conceiving. And to determine if you’re actually pregnant, use pregnancy test strips that detect levels of hCG as low as 25 mIU/ml.
|Allows you to track LH surge and hCG fluctuations for more natural planning||Some users report false-positive results on pregnancy strips|
|Easy to take and read||Urine tests could be a bit messy|
|Great value for money|
|Allows for repeated testing; can suit women with different cycle lengths|
|Provides fast measurements|
Here’s another top-rated ovulation test kit that comes with a convenient app. The Femometer comes in three configurations: Small (20 LH strips), Medium (50 LH strips) and Large (50 LH and 20 hCG strips).
Like most tests, this one works with your urine sample and detects hormonal fluctuations that signal ovulation. And a big amount of test strips, aside from being cost-efficient, allows for repeated testing, so it can suit women with different cycle lengths.
One more great thing is that the Femometer is approved by the FDA, so you can expect high accuracy and reliable results.
|Different package configurations available||Not a great fit for women with polycystic ovarian syndrome|
|High sensitivity; approved by the FDA||Some users report false accuracy on pregnancy strips|
|Easy to use|
|Suits women with irregular cycles|
|Connects to a convenient app to track the results|
This kit designed by iProven is incredibly accurate and can provide you with information about your cycle in about 5-10 minutes — this is more than enough to qualify as one of the best ovulation test kits.
So, just dip the test in the collected urine sample for 5-10 seconds and wait. For pregnancy testing, you can get the results in about 3-5 minutes, while with ovulation strips, it may take a bit longer — 5-10 minutes — to give you the accurate reading.
The manufacturer also states that their test strips are highly sensitive and can detect the LH surge as low as 25 mIU/ml. So, you can precisely predict your fertile window and plan the most suitable day for conception.
|Highly sensitive test strips||Might not be a good fit for women with irregular cycles|
|Bright dye colors on strips make it easy to read||The instructions on how to interpret results are inconsistent|
|Large package; can be enough for up to 3 months of testing|
|Good value for money|
|Large package; testing can be done several times during the day for better results|
Another option in this ovulation test kit review is not much different from the others: it can detect an LH surge at 25 mIU/ml and predict your pregnancy as early as 5 days before your period.
The manufacturer gives you three package sizes to choose from: Small (10 LH, 5 hCG), Medium (50 LH, 20 hCG), and Large (100 LH, 20 hCG). Thus, you can easily track your fertile window during the day to find the best time for conception with no efforts.
The ovulation strips will give you 99.8% accuracy if you follow the guidelines. Just dip the strip into your urine for 3 seconds and lay it flat for 5 minutes. You can do several tests a day for better accuracy, using a new strip each time.
|Highly accurate||Some users report variable sensitivity on LH strips|
|Cost-efficient||False-positive results on hCG strips are possible|
|Different package sizes available|
|Testing doesn’t take much time|
|Recommended by healthcare specialists|
MomMed offers one of the best ovulation test kits that include everything you need to track your fertility throughout the whole planning period.
The kit offers you LH test strips to determine ovulation, hCG strips to find out whether your conception was successful, and plastic cups for urine samples to make your testing process as easy as possible.
The manufacturer suggests you dip the strip in the urine sample for at least five seconds and then lay the strip flat for five minutes — this is the standard time for almost all ovulation predictor kits. If you follow the instruction thoroughly, the test can determine your fertile days with 99% accuracy and help you schedule the best time for having sex with your partner.
|Convenient and easy to use||55 plastic cups produce too much waste|
|Has high accuracy if used according to guidelines||Fluctuating sensitivity on hCG strips|
|Contains 40 ovulation strips, which is enough for a couple of months|
|Comes with a time-tracking chart for repeated tests during the day|
|Doesn’t take long to get the results|
What Happens to Your Body During One Menstrual Cycle?
A female body experiences a lot of changes during an average menstrual cycle. The cycle itself consists of the following stages:
- Menstrual phase. This is when you have your period. During the menstrual phase, the thickened uterine lining, along with blood and mucus, is removed from your vagina. Usually, the menstrual phase lasts for 3-7 days.
- Follicular phase. The follicular phase of the cycle covers the menstrual phase and the days until ovulation occurs. During this phase, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) stimulates your ovaries to produce up to 20 follicles, each containing an immature egg. Usually, only one of the eggs will mature and become a potential embryo, and the remaining ones will die. The follicular phase usually lasts about 15-16 days.
- Ovulatory phase. Ovulation occurs when a mature egg is released from the follicle. This usually corresponds to the peak levels of luteinizing hormone (LH), as this chemical actually triggers the release. The LH surge usually indicates that ovulation will happen within the next 36 hours, which is why it’s the main sign to look for if you’re trying to conceive.
- Luteal phase. The follicle that released the mature egg then transforms into a structure called corpus luteum. This structure then starts to produce progesterone, a hormone that will help thicken the uterine lining so that the fertilized egg can stick to it. If the conception happens, the fertilized egg also starts to produce a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) — the one that is detected by pregnancy tests.
If the pregnancy does not occur, you go through all the stages again.
The thing is, each woman’s body is unique, so the stages of your cycle may not be perfectly aligned with the information in the anatomy brochures.
This is why tracking the changes in your hormonal patterns is the best way to define when you’ll have the highest chances to get pregnant.
And ovulation predictor kits will help you do just that.
How Do Ovulation Tests Work?
Ovulation test kits are designed to help you track the LH surge and predict when ovulation occurs based on the output.
They look like a standard pregnancy test: a thin strip made of highly absorbent paper infused with the chemical indicators of LH levels.
The test has two color bands: the Control band indicates that your strip is valid, and the Test band shows whether you’re ovulating or not (for positive results it should be the same shade or darker than the Control band).
How Long After a Positive Ovulation Test Are You Fertile?
If your test strip has detected the LH surge, the next 72 hours are the best time for trying to conceive.
However, if you don’t have any medical conditions that could affect your chances of getting pregnant, you may be fertile up to 4-6 days after ovulation has occurred.
Types of Ovulation Kits and Their Main Features
The market today is flooded with different ovulation predictors. Most of them use urine samples to monitor hormonal changes, but you can also find saliva ovulation tests, which utilize slightly different technology.
So, let’s break down the features of each type.
Urine Ovulation Predictors
The most common type of ovulation tests today, urine ovulation tests may come in various forms:
- Single-use strips. The simplest option available. Jut dip the strip into your urine sample and then lay it flat and wait. Typically, these strips need 5 to 10 minutes to give you an accurate reading.
- Digital kits. These work very similarly to the previous ones except that they have a digital detector that will read the results for you.
- Fertility monitors. Being the most innovative on the market, they do a more thorough job because along with tracking LH shifts, some of them can give you information about estrogen levels, for more precise predictions.
So, the pros of urine ovulation prediction kits are the following:
- Convenient. Unlike some other methods of tracking ovulation, ovulation test strips are used only a couple days a month and still deliver a high level of accuracy.
- Widely available. Ovulation strips are sold even at supermarkets, so it’s very easy to get them.
- Allow for repeated testing. Some manufacturers offer packages with up to 100 test strips, so you can perform several tests a day for a more thorough tracking.
Now, a word about the drawbacks:
- OPK may not suit women that are approaching menopause. The levels of the luteinizing hormone may start to fluctuate rapidly in women over 40 years and may ruin the results.
- They’re actually not that cheap. Even though some of the high-count packages of test strips from Amazon listed above certainly offer good value for money, most brands at your local pharmacy can offer you 10 strips maximum for the same price.
Also, a positive OPK test doesn’t always mean that the ovulation will happen in the next couple of days. There is a condition called luteinized unruptured follicle syndrome, and women who have it may experience elevated levels of LH without the egg emerging from the follicle.
Saliva Ovulation Test
Also known as ovulation microscopes, saliva tests are designed to detect electrolyte resistance changes and shifts in estrogen levels that happen before ovulation. These shifts result in a specific crystalline pattern in dried-out saliva called ‘ferning’ (because crystals resemble fern leaves).
So, basically, you place a drop of your saliva on a microscope lens, allow it to dry and then read the results.
Typically, the fern-like pattern appears 3-4 days before ovulation and lasts for 1-2 days after it has occurred.
The advantages of saliva ovulation tests include the following:
- Clean and easy to perform. No need to collect urine: just use the swab and place your saliva on the lens.
- Reusable. Lenses are easy to clean and can be used an unlimited number of times.
- Accurate. When performed according to the instructions, the saliva test is about 98% accurate.
The main drawback of saliva testing is that any changes in the pH or electrolyte levels caused by drinking, eating, or smoking will affect the results. Ideally, you should wait 2 hours after the last meal or drink to perform a test, which might be a bit annoying.
What Time of Day to Take an Ovulation Test, Depending on Its Type?
If you go for a urine test, the maximum accuracy can be achieved in the first half of the day, when hormone levels have already established but are not decreasing yet.
Saliva ovulation tests can be performed at any time of day, given that you will wait at least two hours after your last meal or cigarette. This makes them more convenient compared to urine tests, because you may not always have the time and opportunity to collect a urine sample during the day.
How to Choose the Right Type of Ovulation Predictor Kit?
Aside from the type, you should also consider some other things when choosing an OPK test for planning your pregnancy:
- The number of test strips. Since you may want to perform the test several times a day, you may need many strips. Fortunately, some brands can offer you up to 100 ovulation test strips in a package, which makes repeated testing more affordable and cost-efficient. Along with that, some ovulation predictor kits also include the hCG test strips to check if your conception was successful.
- Ease of reading the results. Some users are bad at reading the results and interpreting them, which is totally normal. If you’re one of them, you may want to check product reviews to see if the tests are easy to read. Or, buy a digital kit that will do this part of the job for you.
- Your cycle length. Women with irregular cycles might find tracking ovulation difficult, as their fertile window shifts each time. If that’s your case, you can choose kits with a larger number of test strips, to do more accurate monitoring.
Frequently Asked Questions
When to take an ovulation test?
Most ovulation test manufacturers do not recommend using the first-morning urine for taking tests because the hormonal levels haven’t established yet and this may give you flawed results. Instead, for achieving maximum accuracy, it’s better to take the test twice a day (because the LH surge only lasts a few hours) several days before the expected ovulation.
Are ovulation microscopes better than ovulation kits that work based on urine analysis?
Basically, ovulation microscopes detect the same changes in hormones in your saliva, so they offer nearly the same accuracy as urine ovulation tests.
Will the ovulation test be positive if you’re infertile?
No. Anovulation — the inability to produce and release mature eggs from the follicles — is one of the most common causes of female infertility. So, obviously, when you don’t release eggs, you won’t get the LH surge, and the test will show negative results.
What factors may affect the accuracy of the ovulation test?
Having polycystic ovarian syndrome or other conditions that can impact your hormone levels may affect the accuracy of the ovulation kit. Also, if you have an irregular cycle, your fertile window changes each month. To get more precise results, you may opt for more advanced ovulation trackers instead of basic urine test strips.
Ovulation test kits are widely used as a natural planning method for those who are trying to conceive. They help you detect an LH surge, which indicates that ovulation will happen within the next couple of days.
Depending on your needs, you can get a standard ovulation kit or a combo containing both ovulation and pregnancy test strips. Also, some manufacturers offer their own app for keeping track of your hormone changes and building predictions about your most fertile days.
One of the best examples of the latter is the ovulation kit by Femometer. It will keep all your logs in the form of a convenient chart, thus helping you define the patterns of your cycle and quickly find out if something goes wrong.
But if you’re into simple strip tests, opt for the PREGMATE kit. It’s cost-efficient and easy to do. You can choose between packages of different counts, depending on your needs.