Getting tanned is a popular summer pastime, plus it gives you natural vitamin D. However, many people are curious about how long it actually takes to get the desired tan if you do it through a glass window.

This topic will explore why this method of tanning is not as effective as getting direct exposure to the sun and outline how long it takes to get a tan using this method.

The amount of time it takes to tan through a window depends on several factors, such as the type of glass material, the temperature outside, and your skin type.

For instance, tinted windows can filter out some of the UVB rays from the sun and thus impede your tanning process.

Moreover, darker-skinned individuals may take longer than those with lighter or fairer skin tones to see a visible result after sunbathing inside through double-glazed window glass. This type of glass reduces the UVA and UVB rays to pass through.

If you want to tan fast, then you should avoid doing so indoors because the results won't be nearly as effective compared to getting direct sun exposure outdoors. However, if you want to tan in direct sunlight, make sure to use sunscreen to avoid the risk of skin cancer.

How Long Does It Take to Tan Through A Window

In short, it takes approximately 2 to 3 hours to tan through a window. Keep in mind that this is only an estimate, and you may need more or less time depending on the factors mentioned above.

Moreover, different types of glass can absorb varying amounts of UV rays. For instance, ordinary glass typically absorbs anywhere from 30% to 70% of the UVA rays, meaning that any tan you would get indoors with this type of window is going to be much less intense than if you were exposed to direct sunlight. This is because the window glasses block some of the UV light from reaching your skin.

Additionally, the intensity of sunlight changes depending on the time of day and year. For instance, you'll get more intense sun exposure in summer than in winter, so it will take less time to tan during these months. Likewise, late afternoon is usually when the sun's UV radiation is strongest, so you'll need less time to tan during this period.

It's important to note that sunburn can occur within as little as 15 minutes of exposure for some people. Therefore, if you're using the window-tanning method, make sure to wear sunscreen and limit your exposure accordingly to avoid getting sunburned or prevent the risk of skin cancer from sun rays.

Additionally, keep in mind that you won't get a tan through car windows, in case you are wondering about going on a drive and getting a tan through a car window at the same time. That's not going to happen!

If you are not sure which sunscreen to use, you can use the following one. It is one of our top-picked sunscreens.

Sun Bum Original SPF 50 Sunscreen

Not only has this sunscreen been dermatologist-approved, but it also has an extra special endorsement – Sonny's stamp of approval. The oil-free sunscreen is also water-resistant and reef friendly. Plus, it's packed with Vitamin E, which makes it a great choice for all skin types. To use correctly, spread it liberally over any exposed areas 15 minutes before sun exposure - be sure not to bring it too close to your eyes.

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Get Your Tan On - 3 Alternatives to Window Tanning

While window tanning may feel like a quick and easy way to get your summer glow, it's not always the best option.

The sun's rays can be harmful to your skin, and you might end up with more than just a tan.

That's why we've compiled this list of five alternatives that will help you get the golden hue without any of the risks. Let’s explore these three options:


Self-tanner is an easy, hassle-free way to get a beautiful bronze color without ever having to leave your home.

You can find self-tanners in lotion, spray, or mousse form that give you an even application and won't streak or stain your clothes or sheets.

It takes a few applications to achieve the desired color, but once you do, you'll have a healthy glow that will last for days.

Here is one of the top-picked self-tanners for you.

Beauty by Earth Self Tanner

Everyone wants that perfect sun-kissed glow without the hassle of waiting for summer days outdoors. No one wants an orange hue. Luckily, Beauty by Earth Self Tanner has natural ingredient solutions to get you the tan of your dreams - no matter what skin tone you have. For a pail or fair-skinned person, use a fair to medium shade, while olive and easily tanned skin tones should opt for medium to dark. Thanks to the free-from dyes and toxins, in combination with some organic aloe vera, shea butter, and botanical extracts, skin is left looking hydrated and naturally sunkissed without any of the risks. It's no surprise Beauty by Earth has been in the Best Sellers category for years.

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Sunless Tanning Booth

Sunless tanning booths are another great option for getting a safe tan without worrying about UV rays from the sun.

These booths use misting technology that sprays an airbrush-like solution on your body in order to give you a nice even base layer of color.

Best of all, since it's done in private booths, there’s no awkwardness or worry about other people seeing you.

Spray Tan

If you want an even more natural look than what a self-tanner can provide, then spray tans may be just what you need.

A spray tan is applied using an airbrush gun and gives you a natural-looking tan with fewer streaks and blemishes than traditional self-tanners can provide.

And since it only takes a few minutes to apply, it’s great when time is of the essence.

Body Drench Self-Tanning Spray

Get ready to show off your sun-kissed glow in no time with Body Drench Quick Tan Instant Self Tanner Bronzing Spray. This self-tanner offers breezy applications in an easy-to-handle 6oz can and will have you looking like you just spent a long weekend at the beach. It develops into a natural-looking sunless tan within 3-5 hours, giving you salon-quality coloring without any damage caused by the sun. What's even better is that it has a 360-degree nozzle which ensures even coverage of your whole body, and its amazing bronze tint will enhance your skin tone for a sexy look.

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How Long Does It Take to Tan through A Window - FAQs

Since we know that it takes around 2 to 3 hours to get a good tan through a window. Using some other ways, like self-tanners, can be a quick and easier way.

To further help you understand which option is better for you, we have answered some most frequently asked questions.

How long does it take to tan with a self-tanner?

Depending on the product you use, it can take anywhere from 1 hour to 8 hours for your tan to fully develop. Most self-tanners require multiple applications in order to reach the desired color, so make sure you read the instructions before applying.

Is it safe to tan through a window?

Tanning through a window is generally considered safe as long as you are using sunscreen and other appropriate protective measures. However, this type of tanning does not offer the same level of protection from UV rays that outdoor tanning does. So make sure you use caution when sunbathing near a window.

How do I make sure my self-tanner looks natural?

The key to a natural-looking tan is to exfoliate regularly and evenly apply the product. Make sure you follow the directions on the packaging, as each product will have different instructions for the best results. Additionally, moisturizing regularly will help the tanning product absorb better and last longer.

Are there any risks associated with self-tanners?

Some self-tanners contain ingredients that may be irritating to sensitive skin, so it's best to do a patch test before applying the product all over. It is also important to note that some self-tanners can be drying and should be used in combination with a moisturizer to maintain a healthy tan.

What are the alternatives to self-tanners?

Other options for achieving a sun-kissed look without any of the risks associated with UV exposure include sunless tanning booths, spray tans, and body-drench self-tanning sprays. Each of these methods has its own pros and cons, so you should research and decide which one is best for your skin type.

How long does it take to tan with a spray tan?

Spray tans usually take about 10 minutes or less to apply, and the color will show up within 3-4 hours after application. The duration of your tan depends on how often you reapply and how well you maintain it. With proper care, you can enjoy your spray tan for up to a week.

How often should I use self-tanners?

Depending on your skin type and the product you are using, it is generally recommended to reapply a self-tanner every 4 to 7 days. This will help ensure that your tan stays looking fresh and consistent.


There are many ways to get that summer glow without having to worry about damaging UV rays from direct sunlight – from self-tanner products like lotions and mousses to bronzing powders and airbrush tans – there’s something out there for everyone.

So next time someone asks how you got such beautiful summer coloration, let them know about these three alternatives so they too can join in on all the fun without any of the worries.

After all, why risk damaging yourself when there are so many safer options available?

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Author Mizzy

Mizzy, a beauty & fashion interested, has been sharing his expert knowledge for 4 years. He offers readers honest, grounded reviews on the latest trends.

Mizzy, a beauty & fashion interested, has been sharing his expert knowledge for 4 years. He offers readers honest, grounded reviews on the latest trends.