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Guys, the time has finally come!

Let’s catch you guys up before we get into the exciting stuff. Back in March, we started our journey of discovering where we’re from. We had the opportunity to get kits from 23andMe, and we were so excited to start learning more about ourselves! (check out our original post here). Since we started with 23andMe, we also had the opportunity to try out Ancestry’s AncestryDNA service. So before we get into our results, here is a quick timeline to get y’all up to speed!

23 and Me timeline

March- received kits

We were so excited to try 23andMe’s service, we filled up those spit vials as fast as we could and mailed them out as soon as possible. We couldn’t wait to get started.

April 9th – kit unsuccessful

We probably should have held our horses a bit, because it turned out we didn’t follow the directions correctly and our kits couldn’t be analyzed. So they sent us another round and we re-did them.

April 19th – lab received kit

This was the waiting game. We checked the app literally every single day hoping for results!

April 29- lab reports ready

Finally, we had some answers, and we will share them down below.

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AncestryDNA timeline

May 8th – kit activated

This time, we actually followed instructions, so the process went much faster.

May 10th – lab received kit

And once again, we’re waiting not so patiently for our results.

June 1st- lab reports ready

Okay, now that y’all are all caught up, let’s get into our results!

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Ariana’s Results

23andMe

Okay guys, so my 23andMe results are hefty, and honestly, I’m still trying to deal with it.

Sub-Sahara Africa: 84.6%

  • West African – 82.7%
  • African Hunter-Gatherer – 0.4%
  • East African – 0.1%
  • Broadly Sub-Saharan African – 1.4%

European: 13.7%

  • British & Irish – 6.0%
  • French & German – 1.5%
  • Italian – 0.7%
  • Balkan – 0.2%
  • Iberian – 0.1%
  • Broadly Northwestern European – 2.5%
  • Broadly Southern European – 1.4%
  • Broadly European – 1.3%

East Asian & Native American: 0.6%

  • Southeast Asian – 0.2%
  • Native American – 0.1%
  • Broadly East Asian & Native American – 0.3%

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As you guys can see, according to my DNA, I’m all over the place.

I wasn’t ready for all of the information that 23andMe threw my way. Their platform from start to finish was AMAZING. The waiting period alone was entertaining, filled with survey questions about myself and my lifestyle to help tailor my results.

Although I was extremely satisfied with the process and the user experience, I was a little disappointed in the results. By that, I mean that the results weren’t as detailed as I thought they would be. In their defense, 23andMe needs more data from the African regions in order to provide us with detailed results in terms of region and location. I found out that I was 84.6% west African, but for those of you who have seen a map of Africa, live in Africa, or have traveled to Africa, you know that it’s huge. I could be from countless countries in Africa and 23andMe could only tell me “West Africa” *sigh*. As far as the European results go, they were pretty broad too. I was hoping for specific countries in Europe as well but we don’t always get what we want, right?

In conclusion, 23andMe will only get better as more people (AKA non-white people…) add to their database. The more we participate in buying kits, the more data they get to better our results collectively.

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AncestryDNA

So here we are, again. Because of how broad my 23andMe results were, we decided to give AncestryDNA a try in hopes of a more specific breakdown of our DNA. And that we got! Let me just say this, as a warning, if you were overwhelmed by my 23andMe results, please hold on to your edges.

Africa: 85%

  • Nigeria – 28%
  • Ivory Coast/Ghana – 25%
  • Cameroon/Congo – 14%
  • Senegal – 12%
  • Benin/Togo – 2%
  • Mali – 2%
  • Africa South-Central Hunter-Gatherers – <1%

Europe: 14%

  • Europe South – 4%
  • Ireland/Scotland/Wales – 3%
  • Iberian Peninsula – 2%
  • Europe West – 2%
  • Great Britain – 1%
  • Finland/Northwest Russia – <1%
  • European Jewish <1%

Asia Central: 2%

Side note: Because I am unable to see the exact percentage if it is less than 1%, anything less than 1% calculated in my Ancestry results we be rounded up for the purpose of providing you guys with a full percentage of my DNA results.

Well guys, those are my AncestryDNA results…

Girrrrrrrrrl, I can barely make sense of it all and I’m still working through it. What I will say is AncestryDNA has answered my questions without fail. I was initially in shock when I received my results because I didn’t expect to see so many locations from around the world.

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After receiving my results, did the way I see myself change?

Yes, just a bit. I thought I would be a higher percentage of Nigerian with a sprinkle of European. But girl, My results are lit up like a light. I’m still in shock and I’m not sure what to think about it all, but I am actively building my family tree on Ancestry.com to learn more about my ancestors and their lives. All in all, it’s been a life changing experience for me to see exactly where I come from. From here, I’ll be stalking the internet to find out more about the countries I’m from.

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Hannah’s Results

23andMe

European 99.2%

  • French & German 40.8%
    • Netherlands
  • British & Irish 26.1%
    • United Kingdom
  • Scandinavian 4.6%
  • Finnish 0.5%
  • Eastern European 0.4%
  • Broadly Northwestern European 25.8%
  • Broadly European 1.0%

Sub-Saharan African 0.7%

  • West African 0.6%

East Asian & Native American 0.1%

  • Broadly East Asian 0.1%

So basically, very European!

…with the tiniest bit of West African and East Asian. 23andMe was able to pinpoint that 40% French and German to the Netherlands, so I’m like 40% Dutch! They also were able to pinpoint my British and Irish ancestry to the UK, which includes Scotland, England, and Wales (Spoiler, AncestryDNA was really helpful pinpointing that even further). Even taking into account that 25% Broadly Northwestern European, 23andMe was really specific with matching my DNA with regions. As we’ve talked about, the 23andMe database is a lot more equipped with European information than African information, so my results were able to be that specific.

Ultimately, the biggest surprise was the West African. 23andMe was able to trace that tiny percentage to a person who was 100% West African who lived in the 1800’s. Of course, given the history of this country, we can all interpret that result in a way that’s actually pretty heartbreaking. BUT Ariana and I are hoping against all odds that it was a forbidden love type of scenario.

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AncestryDNA

Europe 100% ??

  • Europe West 55%
  • Ireland/Scotland/Wales 29%
  • Scandinavia 6%
  • Great Britain 5%
  • Europe East 4%
  • Caucasus <1% (technically this is the Middle East, but pretty much Europe)

So, that’s it.

Plain and simple, Ancestry DNA read me as 100% European. Of course, they’re still working on their technology and database, (just like 23andMe is) so they might pick up on my other smaller percentages in the future. What AncestryDNA did an amazing job at was specifying 23andMe’s “UK” reading as Ireland/Scotland/Wales. My dad also did some research as Ariana and I went through this process, and he found out that our last name is actually Scottish, and another prominent name from our family is also Scottish. So I’m pretty confident that that 29% is Scottish.
Although AncestryDNA didn’t call out my 55% Europe West as being associated with the Netherlands, I’m pretty confident in that 55% being mostly Dutch, with probably a little bit of a hodge podge of other European countries like France and Germany. That being said, I’m considering myself to be pretty much Dutch and Scottish!
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The journey is not over yet.

I’m still planning on mapping out my family tree, and hopefully that brings more information to light (like how much Irish could possibly be mixed in with that Scottish – that’s what I always thought I would be, at least partly). However, for now least, this is what we have, and it’s pretty cool!

After receiving my results, did the way I see myself change?

Yes, it’s pretty fun to be looking up things like recipes and travel destinations and being able to tie yourself to those places. I’m really excited to learn more about the Netherlands and Scotland, because I apparently have pretty strong ties to those places. Most of all, I was really surprised that my results were so concentrated in one area of Europe, especially compared to Ariana’s worldwide results! Ultimately, I’m excited to be continuing to research and learn more about mine and Ariana’s family history.

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Well, that’s it for today, folks!

If you want to hear more about our DNA journeys, check out our YouTube channel because we also have videos about our experiences and results from 23andMe and AncestryDNA.

Until next time,

Ariana & Hannah

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