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    Evaporation Line vs Faint Positive: The Ultimate Guide to Pregnancy Test Results

    Pregnancy Tests

    Evaporation Line vs Faint Positive: The Ultimate Guide to Pregnancy Test Results

    Updated on 2 May 2024

    Medically Reviewed by

    Dr. Shruti Tanwar

    C-section & gynae problems - MBBS| MS (OBS & Gynae)

    View Profile

    Bringing a new life into the world can be exciting but comes with a fair share of anticipation, doubts and worries. And the wait can be nail-biting for those eagerly hoping for a positive pregnancy test result. But for many, the journey doesn’t end with that coveted second line. Before you determine the fate of your family, it’s essential to understand the different aspects of pregnancy test results. In this article, we will be shedding light on two common terms that you may come across: evaporation line vs faint positive.

    What is an evaporation line on pregnancy test?

    Women who take a pregnancy test, may sometimes find themselves glaring at an evaporation line or pictures of faint positive pregnancy test. Let’s understand what exactly it is. An evaporation line is a light, colourless line that appears on a pregnancy test after the instructed time has passed. It can often be mistaken for a positive result, giving birth to lots of confusion and anxiety.

    evaporation line vs faint positive pictures

    But it is important to note that an EVAP line does not indicate pregnancy, it is merely an indication of the test strip drying out. It appears when the urine on the test strip begins to dry, leaving a residue behind. The residue may resemble a faint line, which can easily be misinterpreted as a positive result.

    You may also like: Things To Know About Taking A Pregnancy Test At Home

    What is a faint positive on a pregnancy test?

    Now, let’s understand another common term you may come across when taking a pregnancy test. A faint positive result on a pregnancy test occurs when the hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), the hormone produced during pregnancy, has a low concentration. This commonly happens in the initial stages of pregnancy when hCG levels are still rising.

    Unlike an EVAP line, a faint positive is a valid result. While it may be difficult to spot the faint line nonetheless it is a positive test result. Upon observing a faint positive, you should either retake the test in a few days or consult your gynecologist.

    Evaporation line vs faint positive: Key differences

    If you’re still unsure about the differences between an evaporation line and a faint positive result, here are some key differences between the two:

    1. Appearance

    An EVAP line is usually without any colour and appears to be faint whereas a faint positive result will have some colour even if it is dull.

    2. Timing

    A faint positive will present itself within the designated test time whereas the evaporation line may only appear after the test time has passed.

    3. Consistency

    The evaporation line on pregnancy test is likely to appear irregular or incomplete. On the other hand, the faint positive will be a continuous line, even if it’s light.

    4. Reliability

    An EVAP line does not indicate pregnancy as it may even appear when you’re not pregnant because it is a result of the urine drying out on the test strip. Faint positive is a valid result and indicates the presence of pregnancy.

    You may also like: How to Confirm Pregnancy at Home: A Step-by-Step Guide for Women

    Evaporation Line vs Faint Line: Causes

    Both evaporation lines and faint lines on a pregnancy test can appear due to several reasons, let us understand them one by one:

    1. Time

    If you happen to read a pregnancy test after the designated time has passed, it’s possible that the urine on the test strip may have dried and formed an evaporation line.

    2. Early pregnancy

    In the early days of pregnancy, the hCG levels can be low and lead to a faint positive result. But as the pregnancy progresses, the hCG levels will rise and give result to a darker line on the test.

    3. Sensitivity of the test

    Some pregnancy test kits can be more sensitive compared to others, meaning that they can detect even low levels of hCG and give a faint positive result.

    4. Improper testing technique

    If you use a pregnancy test incorrectly, such as diluting the urine sample or not following the instructions, you may get an inaccurate result and give birth to the confusion between an evaporation line vs faint line.


    Tips for accurate pregnancy testing

    To ensure you get accurate results and avoid the confusion between an evaporation line and a faint positive, here are some tips to follow:

    1. Read the instructions

    First and foremost, read the instructions that come along with the pregnancy test kit carefully and follow them to get accurate results.

    2. Use first-morning urine

    To avoid inaccurate results caused due to low hCG levels, it’s recommended to use the first urine sample after you wake up.

    3. Don't read the test after the designated time

    Make sure to read the test results within the specified time period before there’s any chance for the urine sample to dry out and give rise to an EVAP line.

    4. Take another test

    Even if you get a faint positive result or an EVAP line, take another test after a few days to confirm the result. This will provide you with a clearer picture of your pregnancy status.

    If you're looking for a reliable pregnancy test, consider trying Mylo's ExpectSure pregnancy test kit. Mylo's home pregnancy test kit is a convenient, safe, private and easy-to-use method to confirm or rule out pregnancy that can be trusted for immediate and accurate results.


    1. Are evaporation lines thin or thick?

    EVAP lines are usually thin, irregular and faint in colour. They usually look colourless on the pregnancy test.

    2. How to tell the difference between faint line and evaporation line?

    It can be hard to tell the difference between a faint line and EVAP line. But remember, a faint line will have some colour even if it’s light whereas the EVAP line will be colourless.

    3. What should you do after getting an evaporation line on a pregnancy test?

    If you happen to get an evaporation line on pregnancy test, you should consider it as an invalid result. You can either retake the test with proper instructions or consult your gynecologist for further guidance.

    The Bottomline

    The battle between evaporation line vs faint positive can give rise to confusion, false hopes and dashed dreams. To avoid that, you must understand that an evaporation line is nothing more than the urine drying out on the test strip and not an indication of pregnancy. On the other hand, a faint positive may be an indication of pregnancy albeit with low hCG levels. It’s essential that you read and follow the instructions that come along with the pregnancy test kit carefully to understand your pregnancy status with certainty.


    1. Gnoth C, Johnson S. (2014). Strips of Hope: Accuracy of Home Pregnancy Tests and New Developments. Geburtshilfe Frauenheilkd.

    2. Bastian LA, Nanda K, Hasselblad V, Simel DL. (1998). Diagnostic efficiency of home pregnancy test kits: a meta-analysis. Arch Fam Med

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    Medically Reviewed by

    Dr. Shruti Tanwar

    C-section & gynae problems - MBBS| MS (OBS & Gynae)

    View Profile

    Written by

    Anupama Chadha

    Anupama Chadha, born and raised in Delhi is a content writer who has written extensively for industries such as HR, Healthcare, Finance, Retail and Tech.

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