How to Pick Privacy Glass for Your Front Door

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for Direct from the Designers™

If you want to let natural light into your foyer but are afraid of giving passersby a clear view inside your home, never fear! There are multiple ways to brighten with discretion. From simple textured glass to decorative designs and internal blinds, the choice is yours. You can find a suitable configuration no matter your home’s style and surroundings, so here are some of our favorite options to get started!

Therma-Tru Classic-Craft American Style Collection with Satin Etch Glass

The Satin Etch glass on this Classic-Craft® American Style Collection™ entry creates a high-privacy blurred effect from the modern farmhouse-style door to the accompanying sidelites. See how it compares to other types of textured glass.

Textured Privacy Glass

The term “privacy glass” describes varieties that use texture to diffuse light and obscure views. They don’t include the finer details of more complicated decorative glass types, but they come in a wide range of styles nonetheless. You’ll find relatively coarse geometric designs to super fine pearlescent panes that appear to glow, as well as historically and naturally inspired looks. Perhaps you have an aged traditional home and want to dress it up with some glass that looks centuries old? Back in the day, glass wasn’t very clear, so it makes a great addition for privacy now! And if your scheme could use a natural touch, how about glass that appears rain-obscured? There’s plenty of diversity to ensure you love your privacy glass, however utilitarian it may seem.

Comparing styles is one thing, but don’t forget to look at privacy ratings as well. There’s a scale from 1 to 10—1 is totally clear, and 10 blurs anything behind the glass to an unidentifiable smudge of color. As you might imagine, glass types that fall into the privacy category find themselves on the high end of the spectrum, but they aren’t all equal. Take your home’s layout and surroundings into account to decide how much privacy your entry needs. For example, those with living spaces that open right from the front door might prioritize higher privacy more than those with formal, closed off foyers. It’s all a matter of taste and what you have to work with.

Therma-Tru Classic-Craft Rustic Collection with Augustine Glass

With a Granite glass base and wrought iron details, the Augustine® decorative glass shown here on a Classic-Craft® Rustic Collection™ entry provides plenty of privacy and style. Check out other glass designs to see what works for your home!

Decorative Glass with Privacy

Depending on the types of glass used, you can also find high privacy ratings in the decorative category! Decorative glass is more elaborate than privacy glass—different products have totally different looks, and they include beautiful patterns created with various types of glass, caming, bevels, colors, and other details. It’s very hit or miss, though—you have to be sure to scrutinize privacy ratings, because decorative glass comes in all over the scale.

If you choose to go this route, you have the opportunity to complement your home’s architecture with a particularly fitting entrance. Most types of decorative glass are designed with something in mind, whether it be a rustic European look with wrought iron, a fine Victorian motif with intricate curves, a Craftsman pattern with chevrons, or a striking contemporary design with strong linear elements. Because the front door is a natural focal point, it’s the perfect part of your exterior to highlight in such a way. And even as it draws the eye, with the right choice, the decorative glass in your front door system won’t leave your interior feeling exposed.

Therma-Tru Smooth-Star with Internal Blinds

If the classic look of clear glass and blinds is more your style, consider internal blinds that provide privacy when you want it, and that you can control without any cords. They’re sleek and seamless, and perfect for this Smooth-Star® door.

Seamless Internal Blinds

Want the best of both worlds—completely open and concealed? Look into internal blinds, which sandwich blinds between two panes of clear glass! Not only does this eliminate the hassles of cleaning blinds and having them slap against the door as it’s opened and closed, but it lets you totally control the light coming inside and privacy, of course. Using a convenient cordless handle, you can raise and lower the system, and adjust the tilt of the slats to your liking. Safe for children and pets, and with the option for efficient Low-E glass, internal blinds are appealing from multiple angles. Plus, they work for doors with full, three-quarters, half, and one-quarter lites, so you can also enjoy as much glass and door surface as you want, whether you have your eye on a beautiful wood or bold painted look. Even if you choose something else for the main entrance, a door with internal blinds would work well elsewhere!

No matter the kind of front door you’re looking for, Therma-Tru® Doors has collections full of features to suit every home and homeowner’s needs. If you aren’t sure where to start, try the DoorWays App to configure different door builds—even on an image of your own home! Or, you can contact a local dealer for personal assistance. Either way, you’re sure to love the gorgeous possibilities!

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