What is the difference between TPE and silicone sex dolls?

What is the difference between TPE and silicone sex dolls?
8 min read
01 September 2023

Material is an important consideration when selecting a sex toy. The two most common options today are silicone and TPE. TPE is a material that you may not have heard about before.

Thermoplastic Elastomers (TPE) are a plastic type that has become extremely popular in sex toys since 2018. TPE dolls have quickly become more popular than silicone dolls, which were the norm before TPE. After reading this article, you will have a much better understanding of the pros and cons for each material.

TPE is hypoallergenic, and silicone can be safely used on the skin. Here is a list of the top sex toys. Take it all with a pinch of salt, as every brand will be different.

What is the difference between TPE and silicone sex dolls?

What can we conclude from the table?

This table gives an overview on silicone dolls vs. TPE dolls. However, it is not always accurate because each brand differs. TPE dolls are a great choice for many people because of their lower cost and soft feel. Silicone dolls, on the other hand, are less likely to stain and require less maintenance, but are also more expensive. TPE dolls are gaining in popularity mainly because of their affordable prices and soft material.

Prices are a little higher than usual.

TPE dolls are generally priced between $1000-$2500 while silicone dolls range from $2000-$5000+. TPE dolls are cheaper, which is why they attract more new doll buyers.

TPE is the winner in terms of Price.


Both TPE and silicon sex toys are durable, but their durability also depends on the way they're handled. Both can last for a very long time if they are properly cared for. TPE is a flexible material that can withstand pressure, as well as reshape and stretch. The silicone material has a rigidity that allows it to resist more damage but is unable to reform. It's easier to maintain, degrades more slowly and is made of a tougher material. In general, silicone dolls are twice as durable as TPE dolls, before they degrade. However, TPE is easier to repair.

The durability of silicone is unmatched.


TPE is more flexible than silicone. It depends on the manufacturer, as every brand has its own characteristics. Softness can be more important to some than any other feature. TPE is generally more comfortable for sleeping, cuddling and sex. Silicone is still a good option for these activities, although some find it uncomfortable. TPE is more comfortable, while silicone appears better. Everyone has their own tastes. Others think that TPE, like silicone, is too soft. TPE is almost always the winner when softness alone is considered.

TPE is the winner in Softness.

The Staining of Clothing

TPE has porous properties, which can cause it to stain clothing. TPE's tiny pores allow it to absorb any substance placed on top of it, such as color dye and oil. People who dress up dolls with dark colors and bright colours may find TPE dolls problematic. The silicone dolls stain less, but they still do. Silicone is a good option if you'd like your doll to be able to change colors.

Clothing is less likely than other fabrics to be stained by silicone.


When it comes to cleaning sex toys, cleanliness is a major concern. TPE dolls tend to be more difficult to clean than silicone dolls because they are not water resistant. Water tends to remain on TPE for longer which can lead to mold growth. TPE dolls cannot be sterilized because they are porous. Mold can be easily prevented by drying out all openings and wet spots. Mold is less likely to occur on silicone dolls, but it is still possible.

Silicone is the winner in Ease of Cleaning.

Realistic face & body

The silicone and TPE dolls both have realistic bodies and faces. They're nearly identical in terms of shape. It's the detail on the surface that makes the difference. TPE is a material that tends to be more cartoony and plain because it can't retain makeup. Most silicone dolls today have paint that creates realistic texture, fine veins and other details. Paint and makeup last a long time, so the dolls look real. TPE, on the other hand, loses makeup very quickly. TPE tends to appear matte, while silicone is often too shiny. Silicone also has its own flaws.

Silicone is the winner in Realistic Body and Face.

Heat Capabilities for Internal Use

Internal heating is not recommended for TPE and silicone. It sounds great on paper but the heating systems are still primitive. TPE melts at a much lower temperature than silicone, so you shouldn't buy a TPE dolly with a heater. Other factors include increased bacteria growth when TPE is heated. As mentioned previously, silicone works better as an interior heating system. However, it is still not good enough for the price.

The best material for internal heating is silicone (though it's still not recommended).


You will need to take good care of your sex-doll if you wish it to remain in great condition for many years. It includes cleaning, handling and storage as well as other tasks like (oiling) and powdering. TPE, which is naturally lubricated, gradually loses its oil with time. It must be reoiled at least every couple of months. Silicone doesn't need to be oil. The skin can be smoothed out by powdering both. In general, silicone dolls are easier to care for. It only requires cleaning, drying, powdering and storage. (No oiling) TPE needs to be oiled and dried with more care to prevent mold or bacteria growth. Although TPE can be maintained once you've mastered it, a silicone doll is much easier to care for.

Silicone is easier to maintain.

Choose from a Variety of Dolls

In the past, the only options were silicone, fabric or inflatable dolls. TPE flooded the market and offered more options than all three combined. Recently, silicone is making a return, which has resulted in an equally large variety. TPE as well as silicone both offer a wide variety of head/body options.

TPE and Silicone is the same for dolls.

The conclusion of the article is:

Both materials are good and bad. It doesn't matter if silicone was the winner in more categories. What matters is what factors you value most. For a new doll owner, I would still recommend the TPE because it's more affordable and soft. You don't want to invest $5000 in a silicone doll only to discover that dolls aren't your thing. TPE dolls are suitable for newbies as long you understand how to care and clean them.

Silicone dolls, on the other hand, have a number of advantages, including more realistic faces, bodies and hair, are less likely to stain, require less upkeep and last longer. Your personal taste and budget will determine which doll is best for you. Let me summarize the points I believe are most crucial for new doll buyers.

TPE is superior to Silicone for: price, softness and feel, cuddling, sleeping with, sex

The following are reasons why silicone is superior to TPE: longer life, less prone to staining, lower maintenance, more realistic/detail

You have to decide what is more important for you. You should choose TPE if you are looking for a cuddle and sex doll. Silicone is the best option if you are looking for a doll that looks as realistic as possible, and requires less upkeep. Both have their pros and cons, as I mentioned. The TPE material is better for those who enjoy holding and touching their dolls, while the silicone works well as a display piece or photographic item. This guide should have helped you to make an informed choice.

Which do you prefer, silicone or TPE sex toys? Comment below.


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Susan Nicolson 2
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