The Easiest Way to Read a Pregnancy Test

Understand Your Pregnancy Test Results

How do pregnancy tests work, anyway?

As soon as you get pregnant, your body starts to produce a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). Stix detects this hormone and displays the result after five minutes. 

Understand your pregnancy test results - two lines means pregnant, one means not pregnant. Understand your pregnancy test results - two lines means pregnant, one means not pregnant.
Two lines means the test is positive and you are pregnant. One line means the test is negative and you are not pregnant. 

But I see a faint pregnant line in my result window. What does that mean?

Ah, the confusing faint line while home testing. We’ve been there. To keep it short, if you see a faint pregnant line you should wait a few days and test again.

The faint line can mean a few different things. Here’s how to decode and what to do:

Illustration of a faint line on the pregnancy test. You’re pregnant but it’s too early to confirm: a faint pregnant line may mean that your levels of hCG are just too low. The farther along you are in your pregnancy, the more hCG there is. And the more hCG in your urine, the easier it is for the test to detect. If you see a faint line, wait a few days and test again.

You’re not pregnant and it’s just an evaporation line: An evaporation line is a line that may appear in the results window as the urine dries, which may cause you to think you’re pregnant when you’re not. The main way to tell is that evaporation lines appear after the five minute wait time. To avoid this confusion, check right at the five minute mark.

You were pregnant but miscarried early: Early miscarriages (sometimes called a “chemical pregnancy”) are common. If you’ve had early pregnancy loss, there may still be traces of hCG in your urine even though you are no longer pregnant. To be sure, wait a few days and test again. If you still see a faint line on your home pregnancy test, schedule an appointment with your doctor.

When can I take the test?

The day of your missed period. Your levels of hCG double in your urine every few days so the longer you wait to test, the stronger the results will be. 

What time of day should I take the test? Does it matter? 

It’s best to test first thing in the morning, before you’ve had any water to drink. First morning pee contains a higher concentration of hCG, so if you’re testing early, first thing in the morning is best. Otherwise, any time of day is okay. Just don’t drink large amounts of fluids beforehand.

I don’t get my period every month. How do I know the right time to test?

We feel you. If you’re not sure when your cycle begins and ends, it’s best to wait 19 or more days after you’ve had sex. If you’re having sex regularly and you don’t get your period, a Stix pregnancy test subscription for every one, two, or three months is the best option for peace of mind and safety.

Are there any factors that can affect the result?

Please read our handy instructions included in the package. The only things that can affect your results are if you’ve had a recent miscarriage or if you’re on fertility drugs. Ovarian cysts, ectopic pregnancy, menopause, and some very rare medical conditions can also give misleading results. It’s best to test once and wait a few days to test again. If both tests say you’re pregnant, schedule a doctor’s appointment.

I took the test and waited five minutes but I don't see any lines in the result window. What happened?

This is a very rare occurrence but don't fret, it can happen. First, check your Stix wrapper to make sure it's not past expiration date. If it's past the expiration date, the test may be defective.  We do ship Stix with about two years of shelf life on them. However, if it's within the expiration date window, there are a couple reasons for a blank result. Make sure your urine stream hits the absorbent tip for a full five seconds and to wait the full five minutes for results. Please follow the instruction card carefully. Always shoot us an email at if you have questions about this and we're happy to help :).

I’m pregnant. What’s next?

Hit up your doctor for an appointment to discuss next steps. They’ll take it from there.

My test says I’m not pregnant but I really think I am. What should I do?

If your first test says you aren’t pregnant, it’s best to wait three to five days and test again. If you’re pregnant, hCG doubles in your urine every few days. It takes the average American woman six months to conceive, so a Stix subscription can provide peace of mind for your wallet and nerves.

Do the pregnancy tests expire? 

If you're wondering how long Stix pregnancy tests last, pregnancy tests do have an expiration date. The good news is, they won't expire for at least one to two years after your Stix delivery arrives. The specific expiration date is clearly printed on the back of the packaging label.

How often should I take pregnancy tests?

It depends on your situation. If you're not trying to get pregnant and have super regular periods, you can order on a one off basis. If your periods are irregular or you're trying to conceive, then you should be testing more regularly. We designed Stix to fit into your lifestyle with ease and convenience. Find out if a subscription is right for you below.

Is a pregnancy test subscription right for me?

How sensitive are your tests?

Stix can detect hCG at 20mIU/hCG, or about 7 to 10 days after ovulation. For the best results though, we do recommend taking the test at least three days before your missed period or 19 days after you had sex. Your levels of hCG increase every single day so the longer you wait to test, the stronger the results will be. If you do decide to test early, definitely do it first thing in the morning, before drinking any water.

Have other questions about your results? Email us with a photo of the results at

Answers to questions you never knew you had

Head over to the Stix blog for juicy details on all things pregnancy tests, sex, periods, and women's health.

View Blog