TPE vs Silicone Sex Dolls
JY Doll's 161cm Winnie with Silicone Head

TPE vs Silicone Sex Dolls

If you are new to sex dolls, you may not know the difference between TPE and silicone sex dolls. You may have heard the term silicone before, because a large majority of sex toys are made of silicone, but what is TPE?

TPE (Thermoplastic elastomers) is a type of plastic that became extremely popular for sex dolls in the last few years. Before the rise of TPE, silicone reigned supreme in the sex doll world, but ever since TPE sex dolls came out, they quickly exploded in popularity leaving silicone in the dust. Both materials have their pros and cons and after seeing our comparison, you will have a better understanding on which one to choose, and why TPE is currently the most popular sex doll material at the moment.

First, let me say that TPE and Silicone are both hypoallergenic and safe for contact with the skin.

TPE vs Silicone Sex Doll Comparison

PriceLower Higher
DurabilityDurable*More Durable*
SoftnessSofter Harder
Stains from Clothing?Higher chanceLower chance
Ease of CleaningHarderEasier
Realistic Face?RealisticMore Realistic
Realistic Body?Realistic Realistic
Internal Heating CapabilitiesNo/InefficientYes
Variety in Doll ChoicesHigh Low

*TPE is durable because it can take on pressure and reform itself. **Silicone is able to withstand cuts and tears better than TPE, but has a weaker ability to reshape itself, but usually lasts longer than TPE.

What Can We Conclude from this Table?

This table tells us why TPE is much more popular than Silicone. The main reasons being that it is less expensive and softer, which generally outweighs the other comparisons.


TPE dolls generally sell for around $1000-$2500, while Silicone dolls sell for $2000-$5000. New doll owners will likely be drawn to TPE due to its affordable pricing. One of the reasons doll manufacturers have switched to TPE is because not only is TPE cheaper, but it is equally high quality and softer (more realistic feeling than silicone).

TPE wins in Price.


TPE and Silicone sex dolls are both durable but it also depends on how they’re used. They have to be taken care of properly in order to increase their lifespan. TPE’s advantage is that it is stretchy and bendable, allowing it to prevent pressure-related tearing, and it can reshape itself over time. Silicone material is more rigid, which allows it to withstand more physical damage, but is not nearly as stretchy as TPE so it can break and tear from extreme stretching. Silicone usually has a longer lifespan because it is non-porous (making it easier to take care of), degrades slower, and has tougher material. On average, silicone dolls last twice as long as TPE dolls before degrading.

Silicone wins in Durability.


TPE is softer than Silicone, period. The softness ultimately depends on the TPE blend different brands use. For example, Doll-Forever/PiperDoll currently has the softest blend of TPE. WM Doll also has a similarly soft TPE version. The softness of TPE makes it feel much nicer and more realistic than Silicone. TPE does tend to get sticky after washing but powdering quickly solves this and leaves the material feeling silky smooth. Silicone still feels nice, but generally cannot beat TPE in terms of softness and feel. There is a trade-off though; The softer the material, it more easily it tears.

TPE wins in Softness.

Staining from Clothing

Because TPE is a porous material, it has a much greater chance of staining from clothing than Silicone. The tiny TPE pores allows it to easily absorb anything placed on it such as oil and color dye. Therefore, the dye of clothing easily stains TPE unless it has been washed multiple times (even then, dark clothing should be avoided). Staining from clothing for Silicone dolls is a much smaller problem so if you need a doll to wear dark colors for long periods of time, silicone might be a better option.

Silicone wins – will not stain from clothing.


Cleaning is an important issue when it comes to sex dolls. In general, TPE dolls are harder to clean because they are not as water-proof as Silicone dolls. Therefore, water tends to stay on TPE longer, which increases the chance of mold formation. TPE dolls are also porous so they cannot be sterilized. As long as great care is taken into drying all orifices and any wet areas, mold formation can easily be prevented on TPE dolls. Silicone, on the other hand, is much easier to clean and dry so mold is less of a problem (but still possible).

Silicone wins in Ease of Cleaning.

Realistic Face

Both TPE and Silicone dolls have realistic faces. In fact, both are becoming increasingly more realistic as time goes by. However, Silicone dolls definitely have more realistic faces. Due to the material, TPE heads simply cannot look as real as Silicone heads can. Some TPE doll manufacturers have now created Silicone heads for their TPE bodies, which is a bit strange, but the difference in face realism is undeniable. JY Doll and WM Doll both have some TPE dolls with silicone heads but they don’t have oral capabilities.

Silicone wins in Realistic Face.

Realistic Body

Both TPE and Silicone dolls have realistic bodies. While a noticeable difference can be seen in terms of the head, the bodies of both materials can be made into any shape by the manufacturer so neither is really better than the other when it comes the body. Silicone dolls do tend to have better looking vaginas and anuses than TPE dolls though. Silicone dolls also tend to have better vagina placement (although the newer TPE models are improving on this). Personally, I find Silicone skin to look a bit shiny and unnatural compared to TPE, but ultimately, they both have realistic bodies.

It is a tie in Realistic Body.

Internal Heating Capabilities

If you want your doll to have internal heating capabilities, then you don’t really have a choice other than Silicone. TPE dolls cannot have internal heating systems simply because TPE has a lower melting temperature which can result in the skin melting, but also because the TPE material is porous, the heating can increase the chance of mold and bacteria growth. Silicone has a much higher melting temperature and is non-porous so heating is much better for Silicone dolls. Having said that, both TPE and Silicone dolls have heating systems (depends on the manufacturer) and none of them are really good. Basically, they all heat up slowly and unevenly so it’s not really worth it.

Silicone wins in Internal Heating Capabilities (but the Internal Heating is very inefficient).


If you want your sex doll to last for years, you will have take proper care of her. This includes proper cleaning, handling, storage, and other tasks such as oiling and powdering. Generally, a silicone doll is easy to take care of, but if you know what you’re doing, a TPE doll isn’t hard to take care of either. TPE dolls may require some weekly or monthly maintenance which really isn’t that bad, while Silicone dolls do not require much maintenance at all other than cleaning.

Silicone wins in Easier Maintenance.

Variety in Doll Choices

Back in the day when silicone dolls were still prevalent, they were the only choice you had. Now with the rise of TPE, TPE sex dolls have completely overtaken silicone dolls so you will find so much more TPE sex doll brands and dolls than silicone ones now. As this trend continues, the variety in doll choices of TPE pretty much outnumber silicone in numbers too high to count. You will find much more variety in faces, bodies, and brands with TPE sex dolls.

TPE wins in Variety in Doll Choices.


Overall, I would personally choose TPE over Silicone. It is more affordable, softer and more realistic feeling, and has much greater variety in dolls to choose from. As long as you know how to clean and take care of your doll, a TPE sex doll is not too difficult to maintain. All things considered, I think TPE has a clear advantage over Silicone, especially for new doll owners, but in the end, the choice is up to you. You can’t really go wrong with either one.

In short (ignoring other factors), if you want a sex doll that feels good, get TPE. If you want a sex doll that looks as realistic as possible but doesn’t feel as good/soft, get silicone.

Do you like TPE or silicone sex dolls better? Leave your comment below!

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Weazrs

    Hi Steven. You’ve talked a little about maintenance and cleaning, and seem to prefer silicone for ease-of-use while TPE is easy enough to maintain if you know what you’re doing. I’m interested in a first purchase, and I don’t know what I’m doing! My limited experience is with onaholes and full-size torsos, both consisting of TPE materials. I’ve noticed that it’s almost impossible to clean them properly. Dirt and dust sticks to the material, and just moves around to turn into balls of gray ooze. Since I have cats and dogs in the house, the material also seems to attract all the little hairs and they’re nigh impossible to remove. How would you clean TPE in these situations to remove the dirt, dust and animal hairs? Or is silicone a better choice if it’s much easier to remove dirt and animal hairs from that? FWIW I’m currently looking at Doll House 168 and Piper dolls in TPE.

    1. Steven

      Hi Weazrs,
      Silicone dolls are generally easier to clean since they are water-resistant. TPE dolls can be wiped with a wet towel, which should clean off a good amount of dirt and doll. Powdering the doll usually gets rid of most of the dirt and hairs, and after powdering, the skin is smoother, making it harder for lint to stick on it. There’s a method where after doll owners oil their dolls, they scrape the skin with a credit card and remove a lot of the black gunk, but dolls really don’t need to be oiled that much, and oiling can attract more lint. The best method is probably to powder the skin. Using a gentle lint roller or tape (to stick the hairs off) might help too.

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