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How to buy a pregnancy test without anyone knowing

Whether you’re hoping you’re pregnant or hoping you aren’t, buying a pregnancy test can come with a certain amount of ... let’s call it awkwardness. Nobody wants to have an uncomfortable chat with the cashier or run into an acquaintance while buying something so personal and potentially life-changing. So what can you do?

Don’t worry; we’ve got you. Here are a few ways to get your hands on a home pregnancy test without anyone knowing.

Where can I get a pregnancy test discreetly?

1. Stick to the self-checkout lane

Ah, the self-checkout: saving anxious customers from awkward interactions since 1986.* Buying a pregnancy test in-store is the most efficient option, but it can involve a lot of variables. If you’re hoping to go incognito, consider these strategies:

  • Scope out your store before you go. Lots of big box retailers now have store maps available online or through their apps so you can make a beeline for the right aisle without having to ask for directions.
  • Skip your usual haunt. If you’re a regular at a store and you’re worried about a nosy cashier or manager, consider going to a different location.
  • Try to shop during nonpeak hours. Many people like to do their shopping right after work or on the weekends. Pick a less busy time if you’re worried about crowds.
  • Get in and out with in-store pickup. Have someone else do the shopping and pay online before you even arrive! All you’ll have to do is flash your ID, and you’ll be out the door in five minutes, tops.

Ultimately, rest assured that most retail workers have hundreds of interactions a day and are completely unfazed by what customers are buying. Purchasing a pregnancy test probably won’t even register on their radar.

*Fun fact: The first self-checkout lanes debuted at a grocery store in Atlanta in 1986.1 Here’s to nearly 40 years of fewer awkward shopping experiences!

2. Buy online — but check your source first

Want to skip the IRL shopping experience? These days you can have nearly anything delivered right to your door, including pregnancy tests! Do be cautious about where you’re buying from: Always choose a trusted retailer and thoroughly check the packaging to ensure the test hasn’t been tampered with. The one downside to this method is the wait, but if you’re willing to be patient, this can be a great way to get a test without anyone knowing!

3. Get your test delivered with your dinner

We live in a world where it’s now possible to order a pizza and a pregnancy test at the same time. Many food delivery services have branched out into retail deliveries, and some even let you add items from a drugstore or grocery store to your existing food order. (Hey, that pizza may help calm your nerves while you wait for your results).

4. Check out community resources

Women’s centers and organizations like Planned Parenthood often offer pregnancy tests for little to no cost to you. If you’re a college student, your on-campus health center may have resources as well.

5. Talk to your healthcare professional


While nothing can beat the convenience and ease of a home pregnancy test, you may have the option of going directly to your healthcare provider to confirm your pregnancy. Call your healthcare professional’s office to get their recommendation on when to come in after your missed period and to set an appointment. Some healthcare professionals will require you to take a home pregnancy test prior to booking an appointment.

Yes, buying a pregnancy test can feel awkward, but these suggestions can hopefully help ease some of the awkwardness and help you form a plan to maintain your privacy. And remember — whatever feelings may come up when buying a pregnancy test, it’s nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of!

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Source

  1. Dowell S. The Oklahoman. Self-checkout latest innovation in grocery stores. Updated May 20, 1987. Accessed September 26, 2023. https://www.oklahoman.com/story/news/1987/05/20/self-checkout-latest-innovation-in- grocery-stores/62689483007/
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