from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • A trademark used for a waxy, opaque material, polytetrafluoroethylene, employed as a coating on cooking utensils and in industrial applications to prevent sticking. This trademark often occurs in figurative contexts in print: "It would make of Gorbachev's stewardship a truly Teflon chairmanship, demonstrating that no Soviet actions, regardless of how egregious, will cling to him” ( New Republic).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. Multiple film, resin, coatings, fabric and surface protectors made with PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) or fluoropolymer and surfactants not made with PTFE.
  • adj. (of a politician) Having an undamageable reputation (by analogy with nonstick Teflon surfaces).

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a material used to coat cooking utensils and in industrial applications where sticking is to be avoided


Trade name. (Wiktionary)


  • He was acquitted of murder and racketeering twice, earning him the nickname Teflon Don, but was finally convicted in 1992.

  • John Travolta has been cast to play John Gotti Sr., the mob family's patriarch who had a flair for style and a knack for avoiding convictions that earned him the name "Teflon Don."

    The Seattle Times

  • Mr Key has earned the nickname "Teflon John" for the way that nothing politically damaging seems to stick to him.

    WalesOnline - Home

  • Key has earned the nickname "Teflon John" for the way that nothing politically damaging seems to stick to him. Front Page

  • Teflon is from DuPont, so far as I can tell it has nothing to do with NASA either.

    Pancakes from space.

  • Teflon is very durable but will burn off if you get the temperatures too high (take a look at your Teflon coated cookware), though that is not likely to happen on a regular use hunting rifle.

    What is more rust resistant stainless steel or the newer teflon coatings?

  • Equating Palin at such an early stage of her career to political giants like Reagan and Clinton - whose careers defined the term "Teflon" - is high praise indeed, and based on Palin's strong approval ratings it's obviously warranted.


  • Leaves cause major problems because they harden into a "Teflon" - style substance - similar to black ice on the roads - after the first train has run over them.

    Home | Mail Online

  • Senator Obama’s Teflon is wearing thinner and thinner every day.

    Poll of polls: Obama losing ground

  • For years, the yen has become known as a "Teflon currency," strengthening despite the negative effects of the country's economic malaise and massive budget deficits, and frustrating Japanese companies and politicians.

    A Sharp, Swift Slide for Yen


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