Proper stirrer for shampoo making 50-100 litres

edited March 2017 in Resources
Hi all. I am looking for a overhead stirrer for small scale manufacturing of 50-100 litres of shampoo/body wash. My recipe is cold process so no heated phase is needed and I now only need to focus on stirring to mix ingredients well without creating bubbles.
After many hours skimming our forum, the anchor blade is the best but it is not suitable for me. I have thought about these options:
1) Paint stirrer with saw disk:  (About 3HP)Kt qu hnh nh cho paint stirrer overhead

2) Paint Stirrer with this paddle: Hnh nh c lin quan

3)  EX 60 SILVERSON (5HP) : I see this one similar to Lush's stirrer in their shampoo making video but Lush's has square holes.
Kt qu hnh nh cho EX 60 SILVERSON

Or you could recommend me another paddle or machine that is more suitable to my need? Thank you! I am so confused about these stirrers :(


  • The first one is more suited to making emulsion products where a "cutting" action is required.

    The second is suited to gentle mixing of miscible liquids - just what you want to achieve.

    The third is a high shear mixer - completely unnecessary (and unsuitable) for your process.
  • I agree with @johnb - Second one is the best option for what you want to make.
  • A little bit of a tip: Place the stirrer off-centre in the mixing vessel i.e more to one side than the other. This will give a more efficient mixing action. Have the stirrer speed set so that the vortex reaches about half way down the shaft. Never have the vortex reaching the blade - this will result in foaming which, in a concentrated detergent product, can be very persistent.
  • another good configuration is with the shaft at an angle to the surface, so the vortex is relatively small, and generally not coaxial with the shaft
    UK based formulation chemist. Strongest subjects: hair styling, hair bleaches, hair dyes (oxidative and non-oxidative) I know some stuff about: EU regulations, emulsions (O/W and W/O), toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoos, other toiletries
  • edited March 2017
    Option 2 looks good.
    It depends very much on your formulation as well. In the first factory I worked I had to adapt the formulation (or production process) to the equipment rather than the other way around. E.g. by heating the shampoo/body wash mixture slightly your will need less sofisticated mixing equipment. 
  • You can buy something that looks like (2) for under $10 and it's driven by a standard drill.
  • @johnb thank you and everyone. Great tips.
    I also found this which would suit better, wouldnt it? 
    Cnh khuy cht c AC-11

    One more question: is 300-500RPM enough for making high vicious shampoo?
    Thank you!

  • I'm not sure a gate mixer (as illustrated) would be suitable. For it to work properly you must ensure that all parts (except the drive shaft) are fully immersed at all times.

    Regarding the mixer speed, a slow mix for a longer time is a safer option to prevent air entrainment.
  • edited March 2017
    55 gallon drums (208 liters) are widely available, and there's a lot of equipment available to handle them. 100 liters is a non-standard size. It's relatively easy to make a 100-liter batch in a 55 gallon drum.

    If I was going to do this and also prepare for expansion, I'd look for a drum mixer like this one, so I could use a standard drum:

    Otherwise, I'd go with Option 2, but probably using 2 or 3 larger diameter impellers than what are shown.

    300 rpm is much too fast. 20 - 100 rpm is about right.
    Robert Zonis, Sr. Formulation Chemist, Beaumont Products "All opinions and comments expressed are my own, have no relation to Beaumont Products, are fully copyrighted, and may not be used without written permission."
  • Thanks guys. I went for no.2 with 2 blades and bigger than the one in the picture.
  • For a number of years we have been using:


    Works well for us in our batches of around 75 L.
    Dr. Mike Thair
    Cofounder & Chief Formulator
    Indochine Natural
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