What UV Index is good for Tanning? | Top Guide

by Truly Beauty House
Best UV index for tanning

Tanning is very popular especially in the United States because people don’t feel their natural skin tone is attractive. That is why they use tanning products in the market like oils, lotions, sprays, equipment, etc.

Nearly every year, more than 10.0 million Americans take indoor and outdoor tanning services. Tanning first became popular in the 1920s. It has been that the actors and actresses with tan skin look more appealing on the screen. But using the tanning products or sessions will only give a temporary tanning effect. The best way to get tanning is UV radiation. That is why people during the summer go to beaches to get the natural tanning effect.

But there is the most important question that people often ask us: what is the best UV index for tanning, which is not harmful to the skin?  

This is what our blog is about today. So, let’s into the guide:

What is the UV index?

UV (Ultraviolet) index is the sun’s radiation level or you can say the sun’s intensity measurement scale. The range of UV index is from 0 to 11+ which are classified as low, moderate, high, very high, and extreme.  So, now we will tell you from 0 to 11+ what is a good UV index for tanning.

Best UV index for tanning

UV index 0 to 2

This is the lowest UV level of UV radiation. At this level, you need sun protection because it’s not harmful. This type of radiation is mostly observed on cloudy winter days. But as it is classified as a low-level UV index so won’t get much tanning effect. However, you can get little tanning effects if you sit for at least 60 minutes under this UV radiation.

If you want to know if you can tan in the shade or not, read our detailed guide on tanning in the shade.

This level of UV index is moderate and gives you a much faster-tanning effect as compared to the UV index of 0 to 2. Now, as it’s a bit hotter you will need sun protection like sunblock that contains SPF 30.  
Usually, this type of UV radiation is found in partly cloudy, spring, and autumn seasons. The UV index 4 tan time is usually 45 minutes. During this time you need to apply the sunblock every 2 hours.

what uv index is best for tanning
Source : Canva

UV index 6 to 7

Now, this UV index is known as the high level of UV radiation. Now, this UV index requires more protection than the moderate UV index. You need to wear long sleeve clothes, pants, sunglasses and of course sunblock after every two hours. The UV index 7 tan time is 30 minutes. But, it is advised to avoid this UV index as it can burn your skin. 

Usually, this UV index is seen on sunny autumn and spring days.

UV index 8 to 10

This UV index is very very hot. And in this type of radiation, we advise you to not go outside. If in any case, you want to go wear sunglasses, a hat, long sleeve shirt, and pants and use sunscreen after every 2 hours. These UV rays are considered the most intense that have been observed on a very summer day. 

The UV index 8 tan time is 15 to 20 minutes. 

UV index 11+

This UV index is the extreme radiation of the sun. This type of radiation has been observed in tropical areas. Avoid the outdoor time and keep your skin protected. Wear sunglasses, a hat, long sleeve shirt, and pants, and use sunscreen after every 2 hours if you need to go out. 

The UV index tan time is 10 minutes. 
The best UV index for tanning is 3 to 5 which will give you a natural tan effect without damaging or burning your skin but don’t forget to use sunscreen.

How high does the UV index go?

According to the global UV index scale, the high index the UV scale can go to is 11 which is the extreme and the hottest radiation. The higher the UV index scale will be it means the stronger the sun ray will be, which can burn or damage your skin.

Can you tan with a UV index of 5?

Yes, you can get a tan with a UV index of 5 as it’s a moderate level and also is the safest. But it can only be safe if you use sunblock and sit for only 45 minutes.


  1. Can you get tan with a UV index of 6?

    UV index 6 means it has high and strong radiation from the sun. It can give you a tan much fastly in 25 to 30 minutes. But this UV index is harmful.

  2. How long does it take to tan in UV 7?

    UV index 7 takes 30 minutes to your skin.

  3. What is the best weather to tan in?

    The best weather to get a tan is summer between 10 AM to 3 PM.

  4. How fast do you tan in UV index 8?

    With the UV index, you can get the tan in 15 to 25 minutes.

  5. What is the highest possible UV index?

    According to the Global Solar UV index, the highest and the strongest UV index is 11+

  6. Can you tan with a UV index of 4?

    Yes, you can but it will take more time because the UV rays are not so strong in this index.


So, that was all about. The best UV index for tanning in summers is 3 to 5 whereas best UV index for tanning in winter is 6 to 7. We have described all the UV indexes so that you can better understand by yourself what is good for you and what is bad for you. 

While tanning your body it’s also important to take care of your skin. 

If you have any other suggestion or query in your mind feel free to let us know in the comment section or simple email us at info@trulybeautyhouse.com

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