Colloid vs. Suspension: What is the Difference?

Posted by Tal Shechter on Jan 25, 2017 12:30:00 PM

colloid vs suspensionHomogenizers are gaining popularity in the industries of biotech, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, and food. They have been proven to simplify processes, improve taste, texture, and appearance of finished products, and save money – and time. Who wouldn’t want to implement this powerful technology? However, before selecting a homogenizer for the task at hand, it is important to understand two important by-products of homogenization – suspensions and emulsions. What are suspensions and emulsions? What are the differences? And how are they related to homogenization? Continue reading to learn the answers to these questions and more.


A suspension, simply put, is a mixture of two substances – one dispersed into the other. Examples of suspensions include droplets of oil in air, and sand in water. Particles in a suspension are easy to see, as they are larger than the particles making up the solution. Because of this quality, these larger particles within a suspension will settle if allowed to stand undisturbed. This inherent quality also makes suspensions very easy to separate through filtration.


Colloids, like suspensions, can also be defined as a mixture of two components. The particles in a colloid can be solid, liquid, or gas; similarly, the medium that these particles are suspended in can also be solid, liquid, or gas. However, unlike suspensions, particles in a colloid are miniscule in size and cannot be easily separated or filtered. However, although the particles are small in size, they can be seen, thanks to the Tyndall effect, which is defined as the scattering of light by particles in a colloid.

BEE Homogenizers

With the knowledge of suspensions and colloids firmly under your belt, you can now wisely choose the right homogenizer for your application. No matter what the end goal, BEE International has the right homogenizer for the task. Our homogenizers are suitable for virtually any application and environment, including laboratory use, as well as pilot plant and industrial use. Our homogenizers offer the following benefits:

  • Guaranteed scale-up to production
  • Proprietary high pressure intensifier system
  • Compliant with CFR 21 part 11 requirements
  • Wide range of production capabilities and levels of automation
  • SCADA compliance
  • Sanitary design and features suitable for the pharmaceutical industry
  • Security modes and authorizations

To learn more about how our suite of high pressure homogenizers can help with your industry’s needs, please contact us today. For even more information, our eBook, “How to Achieve Efficient & Consistent Particle Size Reduction” can be downloaded for free here:

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