Welcome to our Everlywell review and FAQ, intended to give you all the information you need on this company to make an educated purchasing decision. Let’s get started!
(If you’d like to skip straight to our verdict on whether Everlywell is legit or not, just click here — the bottom line is you should be very suspicious of it and I highly doubt it’s worth paying for).
What is Everlywell?
Based in Austin Texas, Everlywell was founded in 2015 by Julia Cheek and currently has around 50 employees. It sells a variety of at-home health test kits. Their most popular test kit is their food sensitivity test, but there are also at-home test kits for sleep and stress, fertility, heart health, STD’s and more, just to name a few.
As of May 2020, here’s a complete list of test kits Everly sells (taken from their website at everlywell.com):
Here’s what a typical Everlywell test looks like:
When you’ve done the test, Everlywell will then show you your results, like this:
How do you do Everlywell tests?
When you order an Everlywell test kit, it’s shipped to your door and you do the test yourself. For most testing kits, this involves taking a small blood or saliva sample, and you then send the sample to Everywell’s lab in a prepaid shipping label. Everlywell then analyzes your sample, and you can then view the results on their platform.
Everlywell’s business model reminds me of Lensabl: you make an order online, something gets shipped to you with a prepaid shipping label, you send something back in that and then your product is delivered. Like how Amazon is taking over a lot of traditional brick-and-mortal retail businesses, there are a lot of startups like this with a unique selling point of being able to offer something cheaper and at much greater convenience (no need to leave your home).
How long do Everlywell tests take?
Upon ordering a testing kit, it should be shipped the next business day, and after Everlywell receives your sample they should analyze it and give you your results within 5 business days. If you do the test and send it back the day it’s delivered to you, you should get your Everlywell results within 3 to 9 business days from start to finish (taking into account varying postage times, and varying times of 1 to 5 days for Everlywell to analyze your sample).
What do Everlywell tests cost?
Between $49 for their cheapest tests (such as their Chlamydia and Gonorrhea test), and up to $199 for their most expensive tests (such as their STD tests).
Where can you buy Everlywell tests?
Amazon (non-affiliate link) or the official website at everlywell.com. The prices, at the time of writing, look to be the same for each test at both Amazon or everlywell.com, so it shouldn’t matter which one you order from.
Was Everlywell on Shark Tank?
Yes. Everlywell and its CEO Julia Cheek appeared on S09E12 of Shark Tank, seeking for $1 million for 5% equity, and got a $1 million line of credit at 8% + 5% equity by Lori Greiner.
Do Everlywell tests actually work?
The most important question. 🙂
First, I want to emphasize that you have to be very careful and suspicious of Everywell reviews online. Here’s why:
- Many website owners will have an incentive to write a fake positive review to get an affiliate commission for selling Everlywell (see some details of Everlywell’s affiliate program here – they pay 12% commissions to people who refer a new customer)
- Even for verified Amazon reviews that speak positively of Everywell (eg. here), most of these will be written by people with no medical background and who may be susceptible to the placebo effect, and are honestly in no position to comment on whether the test they brought has any validity
Sure, like others, I could order an Everywell test and write a raving review of it… but it wouldn’t be of much or any use, given that I’m not a doctor or physician and have no health expertise. That’s why I prefer to compile comments from people who are actually qualified to speak on this. And so instead of ordering an Everlywell testing kit, I spent several hours researching online, sticking to credible sources only. Here’s what I found:
- A ‘Shark Tank’-funded test for food sensitivity is medically dubious, experts say by Stat News (highly recommended reading)
- IgG food intolerance tests continue to mislead consumers into unnecessary dietary restrictions by Science-Based Medicine
- Numerous 1 star reviews on Amazon (there are dozens of reviews here from people who got inaccurate test results)
As mentioned in the links above, doctors who work in allergy/immunology do not recommend these tests, eg:
Dr. Martha Hartz, an allergist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., says she frequently evaluates patients who’ve already forked over the cash for the testing. “Anytime I see a patient who’s had these kinds of tests, we get them to toss it aside,” Hartz said. “It has no relevance to anything. It is just not a test that should done.”
Patients who ask Dr. Robert Wood, an allergist at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, whether they have a food sensitivity would never undergo an immunoglobulin G test. Immunoglobulin G tests “are completely useless and do dramatic harm” because they may compel patients to unnecessarily avoid broad swaths of a healthy diet, Wood said. “In all my years of practice, I have never sent an immunoglobulin G test because they have no ability to predict food sensitivity,” he said.
In addition, keep in mind that Everlywell is not regulated by the FDA, so there is honestly nothing credible supporting it right now as far as I can see. You may believe that the US healthcare system is flawed, or perhaps that doctors are closed-minded, stubborn and/or corrupt and beholden to big pharmacy, and that’s why no doctors now are vouching for something like Everlywell. But while the healthcare system is far from perfect, I doubt that’s the reason doctors are against Everlywell tests.
Based on everything I can see so far, the bottom line is I find it difficult to put much faith into Everlywell, and I strongly recommend seeing your doctor to get a test done rather than ordering one of their kits.
I’d love to be proven wrong on this, so if you can comment on Everlywell with any authority or have information in favor of it, please leave a comment or get in touch. I will update this article if and when new evidence in support of Everlywell appears.
Is Everlywell the next Theranos?
Theranos was a massive fraud that claimed to be able to do very rapid, accurate blood tests using very tiny amounts of blood, which was total bogus. A few people have noted the similarities between the two companies:
- Both claimed to be able to do blood tests quickly, easily and at a fraction of the cost of the traditional healthcare system
- Both were founded by blonde attractive females
- Neither had any approval from actual doctors
Everlywell has at least sold a decent amount of its product (Theranos only ever had a grand total of $100,000 in sales) and has not reached a ridiculous multi-billion dollar valuation. And while I’m skeptical of it as explained above, I’m not sure if it’s a total fraud like Theranos was.
Can you comment on Everlywell with authority? Get in touch!
If you’re a medical professional or you are qualified in any way to comment on the validity of Everlywell’s tests, please leave a comment below or email me ([email protected]).