Most of us once believed that the only type of bong material was glass, and that’s understandable considering the fact that glass has been the most popular material for bongs and other types of pipes many decades. But, more and more manufacturers and distributors offer a wider variety of bong materials than ever before, and without a doubt, the two most popular alternative materials are silicone and ceramic.
Silicone and ceramic are two extremely different materials with unique advantages and disadvantages. Ceramic material has been around far longer than silicone, but silicone is quickly proving itself to be the more desirable choice of the two, and for a number of reasons.
When it comes to durability, there is absolutely no competition between silicone bongs and ceramic bongs. Ceramic is highly fragile, and silicone is stunningly resilient. Ceramic can shatter, chip or crack easily, while silicone is incapable of shattering, chipping or cracking unless the integrity of the material has been severely compromised due to poor maintenance. This is extremely valuable as a good number of us are prone to dropping or tipping over our bongs.
Easiness to Clean
Silicone is also far easier to clean than ceramic. Ceramic is a highly porous material, and porous materials are simply harder to clean thoroughly. Each time we use your bong, resin builds up on the interior walls. Using ceramic as your bong of choice means that resin will get into those nooks and crannies, which will therefore be harder to thoroughly remove. This can lead to diminished or bad flavor as each time you take a hit, you’re tasting some of that resin buildup that was leftover.
Meanwhile, silicone is smooth and nonporous, so most gunk can simply be wiped down. A good soak in one of our several cleaners available will get rid of the buildup, and it’s pretty easy to get your silicone bong back to the state in which you purchased it in terms of cleanliness. This also means that the process of cleaning a silicone bong is much faster and requires far less effort.
Silicone is more lightweight than ceramic, and that also adds to its value. Ultimately, a lighter material is preferable since it makes handling it much easier. It also means we’re less likely to drop it, and it’s less likely to tip over.
Aesthetics are highly subjective, so here is one area in which we can’t really give a clear answer. Both silicone and ceramic bongs have their own unique aesthetic value that’s tough to compare, as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Both come in various sizes, shapes, colors, and patterns.
Silicone bongs are notably more affordable than those made from ceramic. Silicone is simply a cheaper material to produce than ceramic. But, this doesn’t mean that silicone bongs are somehow a weaker choice reflected by a lower price. Silicone bongs can last longer than ceramic bongs due to a number of factors, and so it’s not like going with the cheaper option means that you’re somehow settling for a less-than-ideal model.
Silicone bongs are more portable as well. With a ceramic bong, it can be really hard to take your piece with you on the road. Ceramic is just so fragile and heavy that storing it in a bag can be a challenge, as it can easily weigh things down or knock into other objects and shatter. Meanwhile, silicone is highly lightweight and durable, so you can throw it into your bag without having to really worry about it at all. If you like to take your bong with you when you go camping or to a friend’s house, silicone is the clear winner between the two.
Silicone bongs can be thrown into the dishwasher, while ceramic bongs cannot. Ceramic bongs will likely crack due to the nature of a dishwasher, while silicone will come out in the same state in which you placed it, only cleaner. Just remember that if you’re going to throw your silicone bong in the dishwasher, you cannot let it be bent or stretched in any way on the rack, or else it will likely come out warped.
Technically, a ceramic bong can last forever, but rarely does this happen because the risk of breaking it at some point is very high due to its fragile nature. Meanwhile, silicone is far less likely to break, and can last for between 10 to 20 years on average if you’re a regular user. Essentially, your silicone bong is more likely to last than one that is made from ceramic, although some particularly cautious individuals have been able to keep a ceramic bong for many decades.
Ceramic is a nonflexible material, which means that it cannot bend or stretch in any way. Silicone, meanwhile, is fairly flexible, and if it accidentally gets bent or stretched, it will bounce back to its original shape. Note that this does not mean that you should test its flexibility limits, because over time this can warp the bong.
Silicone is generally easier to store than ceramic, because you don’t need to be as careful about how you store it. You don’t need to worry about knocking it over, as long as there is no water in it, which means it’s easier to find a place to keep it when it’s not in use.
Ultimately, both ceramic and silicone do a good job at preserving the cleanliness of flavor when you’re smoking, as they don’t influence the flavor with their material compounds. However, because ceramic is harder to clean, you’re more likely to get some negative flavor qualities from the accumulation of resin, than you would if you were using a silicone bong.
Silicone or Ceramic? The Answer is Clear
It’s clear that silicone bongs offer unique advantages over those made from ceramic. Therefore, even if you do own a ceramic bong, it’s worth investing in one made of silicone due to the fact that it’s more resilient and more travel-friendly.