homogenizer or stirrer for small business starting out?

hello all. i'm in the process of doing research to start a small bath and body care company. i've done my ingredient research and i'm just about ready to begin purchasing raw materials to start playing around and formulating.

i've done some research (read the "setting up a cosmetic formulating lab" series and discussions on here, looked at blogs etc) but i'm still a bit lost as it relates to equipment, specifically stirrers/homogenizers. to start i'll be making body wash and body lotion and i'm not sure if i need an overhead stirrer, homogenizer or both. the way i understand it, most overhead stirrers have adjustable speeds and can do high shear AND low shear mixing but a homogenizer can only do high shear mixing so i'm better off with the stirrer, is this correct?

as i start experimenting i'll probably be working in small batches of maybe 200mL the most, until i'm satisfied with my base formula. should i use an immersion blender until i'm ready to scale up?

i've seen some overhead stirrers i think i like but i'm not sure what i'm supposed to be looking for in the first place, so if anyone has any advice, opinions or product recommendations they'd like to share i would love to hear them. i live in the caribbean so the easiest way for me to get things here is to purchase from US sites/companies and use a freight forwarder. paying freight and taxes can be expensive therefore my budget right now is $250. i do have amazon prime so recommendations from amazon are very welcome. thank you.

Comments

  • You definitely want a stirrer before a homogenizer. You’d have to tell us what you intend to make before us being able to recommend a homogenizer or not. 

    Sorry, I’m not help with equipment suppliers. 
  • Take a look at this one:
    https://www.katom.com/048-MX07015.html

    The beauty of this one...is that it has the biggest range of speeds...infinite adjustment from 0 rpm to 13,000 rpm.....so it can both emulsify and stir, unlike the cheapies on Amazon....which the lowest speed is well beyond the realm of stirring.
    Very heavy duty and high quality.

    Regarding which is more important... emulsifier vs stirrer....I think this question can only be answered based on which emulsifiers you intend on using!

    Note...I have the above machine...and could not be more tickled with it....after burning through 3 of the Amazon types...hehehe.
  • an overhead stirrer will do if you can find it within $250.
    a stick blender is cheaper might be a good starter and then get a stirrer when you have more experience. 

    when i make test batch at home 100-200 i do stick blender and cool down by hand, 300-1000 i do overhead stirrer. if the formulae is too complicated or need a homogenizer i hand it over to professional formulator. 

  • Sponge said:
    You definitely want a stirrer before a homogenizer. You’d have to tell us what you intend to make before us being able to recommend a homogenizer or not. 

    Sorry, I’m not help with equipment suppliers. 
    I'll be making body wash and body lotions, thought I put that in the post sorry
  • Take a look at this one:
    https://www.katom.com/048-MX07015.html

    The beauty of this one...is that it has the biggest range of speeds...infinite adjustment from 0 rpm to 13,000 rpm.....so it can both emulsify and stir, unlike the cheapies on Amazon....which the lowest speed is well beyond the realm of stirring.
    Very heavy duty and high quality.

    Regarding which is more important... emulsifier vs stirrer....I think this question can only be answered based on which emulsifiers you intend on using!

    Note...I have the above machine...and could not be more tickled with it....after burning through 3 of the Amazon types...hehehe.
    the dynamic mini pro? yes i was looking at this one as a "starter" for now, thanks for the rec and review!!!

    emulsifier vs stirrer depends on which emulsifier i want to use and thats because some ingredients just don't stand up to high shear mixing which is what the emulsifier would do right?
  • Pattsi said:
    an overhead stirrer will do if you can find it within $250.
    a stick blender is cheaper might be a good starter and then get a stirrer when you have more experience. 

    when i make test batch at home 100-200 i do stick blender and cool down by hand, 300-1000 i do overhead stirrer. if the formulae is too complicated or need a homogenizer i hand it over to professional formulator. 

    this sounds like it might be the way to go. which stick blender do you use?
  • this sounds like it might be the way to go. which stick blender do you use?
    I use a Chinese (or Japanese) one i don't know the name, bought it from liqour store about $30 i think. 

    if you want a high quality one you have to go with one Graillotion suggest above.
  • GraillotionGraillotion Member
    edited September 9
    The biggest functional difference between the cheap stick blenders....and the Mini-pro....is the ability to adjust speed.  None of the cheap ones that I burned through....could operate slowly.  Their slowest setting was faster than I often wanted in certain situations.  
    The other thing....as I burned through 3 of them in about 9 months....they actually ended up being no cheaper....than one good one.  :) 

    You can not measure cost...when you need to slowly stir air out of your emulsion towards the end.
  • The biggest functional difference between the cheap stick blenders....and the Mini-pro....is the ability to adjust speed.  None of the cheap ones that I burned through....could operate slowly.  Their slowest setting was faster than I often wanted in certain situations.  
    The other thing....as I burned through 3 of them in about 9 months....they actually ended up being no cheaper....than one good one.  :) 

    You can not measure cost...when you need to slowly stir air out of your emulsion towards the end.
    oooh okay, i see. i think i'll end up going with this one, it's in my price range and sounds like my best bet since im just starting out. did you have to buy this attachment tool as well? : https://www.dynamicmixersusa.com/product/ac560/


  • GraillotionGraillotion Member
    edited September 9
    The biggest functional difference between the cheap stick blenders....and the Mini-pro....is the ability to adjust speed.  None of the cheap ones that I burned through....could operate slowly.  Their slowest setting was faster than I often wanted in certain situations.  
    The other thing....as I burned through 3 of them in about 9 months....they actually ended up being no cheaper....than one good one.  :) 

    You can not measure cost...when you need to slowly stir air out of your emulsion towards the end.
    oooh okay, i see. i think i'll end up going with this one, it's in my price range and sounds like my best bet since im just starting out. did you have to buy this attachment tool as well? : https://www.dynamicmixersusa.com/product/ac560/


    As a bit of a perfectionist....I did buy that attachment....and I believe I paid more for it...than the machine.
    It was completely unnecessary!  Could not tell any difference in performance with the attachments that came with it (4).  ** Note ** so far I only used it in small 240 gm batches, my opinion may change as I ramp up into 4L batches.
    However...as I switch to a new project, using lamellar emulsifiers, I think it will come in handy....where I can easily switch attachments after making the initial emulsion, and then switch to the other attachment during cool down and stirring.
    Note....this is a very heavy...well built machine.  (Made in France)  So it will not be a light weight made in China gadget you may have seen in stores.  Being that it is therefore a little top heavy...always make sure to be careful...if you are leaving it standing up in a small sample beaker.  (Lost more than one batch...to an unfortunate tip over.)
  • The biggest functional difference between the cheap stick blenders....and the Mini-pro....is the ability to adjust speed.  None of the cheap ones that I burned through....could operate slowly.  Their slowest setting was faster than I often wanted in certain situations.  
    The other thing....as I burned through 3 of them in about 9 months....they actually ended up being no cheaper....than one good one.  :) 

    You can not measure cost...when you need to slowly stir air out of your emulsion towards the end.
    oooh okay, i see. i think i'll end up going with this one, it's in my price range and sounds like my best bet since im just starting out. did you have to buy this attachment tool as well? : https://www.dynamicmixersusa.com/product/ac560/


    As a bit of a perfectionist....I did buy that attachment....and I believe I paid more for it...than the machine.
    It was completely unnecessary!  Could not tell any difference in performance with the attachments that came with it (4).  ** Note ** so far I only used it in small 240 gm batches, my opinion may change as I ramp up into 4L batches.
    However...as I switch to a new project, using lamellar emulsifiers, I think it will come in handy....where I can easily switch attachments after making the initial emulsion, and then switch to the other attachment during cool down and stirring.
    Note....this is a very heavy...well built machine.  (Made in France)  So it will not be a light weight made in China gadget you may have seen in stores.  Being that it is therefore a little top heavy...always make sure to be careful...if you are leaving it standing up in a small sample beaker.  (Lost more than one batch...to an unfortunate tip over.)
    Noted! I think I'll definitely try to get my hands on that machine, thank you so much!
  • Thank you all for the help, I really really appreciate it!

  • because some ingredients just don't stand up to high shear mixing which is what the emulsifier would do right?
    What would be an example?  You have an ingredient that you want to leave as chunks?
  • Homogenisation is essential for bringing the stability and sensorials. Even if you can't tell the difference at the first glance, the microscope could show the difference, and it is related with the more uniform structure of the emulsion and the smaller size of the fat droplets. This is important when you are creating an emulsions with higher water phase which are more unstable in general. Dinamyx is not a proffesional device though! If you are planning to make a big batches, you should check the proffesional devices.

Sign In or Register to comment.