Top 10 Recommended Model Paint Mixers and Shakers

best model paint shaker and mixer for miniatures and models - hobby paint shakers and mixers - recommended alternatives to DIY paint shakers

Are you looking for a model paint mixer machine? Some of the best model paint shakers and mixers are simple devices with light-duty motors. Others are more powerful, industrial sized mixers. If you’re looking for help to shake up your Army Painter dropper bottles, Citadel pots, or other brands of highly-pigmented model paints, check out this list of popular model paint mixers and shakers.

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In this article, I review the 10 most recommended model paint shakers and mixers available for purchase right now.

In a hurry? Check out the favorite!

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - LabGenius mini vortex mixer - mini vortex mixer for painting miniatures and models

Here are the top 10 recommended model paint mixers and shakers for hobby paints:

  1. LabGenius Mini Vortex Mixer
  2. Robart Hobby Paint Shaker
  3. ProShaker Version 2.0
  4. Nail Polish Shaker Mixer
  5. Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer
  6. Four E’s Scientific Mini Vortex Mixer
  7. Scientific Industries Vortex Genie
  8. Badger Paint Mixer
  9. Electric Tattoo Ink Mixer
  10. Paint Shaker: Artis Opus Companion Series

Without further adieu, here we go!


User-experience criteria for rating model paint mixers and shakers

This review uses 7 criteria for rating each model paint mixer or shaker based on user-experience.

  1. Useful – practical benefit to the user
  2. Usable – enables users to effectively achieve their end objective
  3. Findable – a product must be easy to find, e.g., available when needed
  4. Credible – the ability of the user to trust in the product
  5. Desirable – an attributed related to branding, image, identity, aesthetics and emotional design
  6. Accessible – relates to a product’s reach to users across a full range of abilities
  7. Valuable – value is one of the key influences on purchasing decisions, e.g., related to cost-benefit ratio to the individual user

Are you looking for a do-it-yourself (DIY) homemade paint mixer?

Forget retrofitting your Dremels or jigaws to your paint pots and bottles, check out this useful video from my favorite YouTuber, Luke Towan, for a DIY option for mixing your model paints.

Not your cup of tea? Too much work?

Continue reading below for the review of model paint mixers and shakers.


Here are the top 10 best paint mixers and shakers for model hobby paints:

1. LabGenius Mini Vortex Mixer

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - LabGenius mini vortex mixer - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
LabGenius Mini Vortex Mixer – this is the best valued vortex mixer for scale model hobbyists, miniature artists, and tabletop painters.

The LabGenius mini vortex mixer has risen to the top of the model paint mixer pile for popularity and hobby community praise. Do a quick search online and you’ll see great reviews about this small and powerful hobby mixer.

For its price around $80, it’s a solid contender for the overall best paint mixer for miniature painters. It will mix model paints in all sized pots or bottles, e.g., Vallejo, Army Painter, Games Workshop, P3, Kimera, Scalecolor and more.

This powerful mixer will also homogenize the larger bottles of varnishes, mediums, and airbrush surface primers.

Among other industrial vortex mixers, the LabGenius mixer continues to shine as the best valued model paint mixer/shaker for hobbyists.

  1. Useful – 5/5
  2. Usable – 5/5
  3. Findable – 5/5
  4. Credible – 5/5
  5. Desirable – 4/5
  6. Accessible – 4.5/5
  7. Valuable – 4.5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Heavy duty
  • Fits many bottle/pots
  • Fast paint mixing
  • Small size/portable
  • Affordable

Cons

  • None

2. Robart Hobby Paint Shaker

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - Robart Hobby Paint Shaker - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
Robart Hobby Paint Shaker – solid, reliable, and functional for hobby modelers and painters

The Robart Hobby Paint Shaker is my recommendation for those who don’t want to spend a lot of money, but don’t want to sacrifice capability. I purchased this shaker more than 3 years ago and it still drives fantastic.

As a commissioned miniature painter, I rely on these paint mixing machines to not only save me time, but physical pain. For more details about this very useful mixer, check out more details here.

This shaker is powered by an AC adapted power cord/plug. But, if you look online you’ll find a battery-powered version of this paint shaker (though it has other issues, like stability and reliability).

Functionally, all you do is strap in your paint bottle with the included rubber band, and press a button. Give it 60-90 seconds and your paint should be mixed well.

Remember, that this is a light-duty machine, so don’t run this hobby shaker continuously for too long!

  1. Useful – 5/5
  2. Usable – 4/5
  3. Findable – 5/5
  4. Credible – 4.5/5
  5. Desirable – 4/5
  6. Accessible – 4.5/5
  7. Valuable – 5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Simple function
  • Effective
  • Small size
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Noise
  • Light duty only

3. ProShaker Version 2.0

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ProShaker Version 2.0 – very popular for tabletop model painters

It is certainly more expensive (though it tends to go on sale on Amazon, check updated pricing here), as a commercial shaker system it’s definitely worth a look.

The ProShaker (Version 2.0) is a hot-seller! If you’re doing a bit of market research, like I tend to do, you’ll find this bottle shaker selling a lot.

If you paint a lot, you’ll want something that will work and last a long time with frequent use. Don’t get bottlenecked by equipment.

  1. Useful – 5/5
  2. Usable – 3.5/5
  3. Findable – 5/5
  4. Credible – 4/5
  5. Desirable – 4/5
  6. Accessible – 5/5
  7. Valuable – 4.5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Commercial use
  • Durable
  • Small footprint
  • Fits many sized bottles
  • Fast mixing/shaking

Cons

  • Expensive

4.  Nail Polish Shaker Mixer

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - Nail Polish Shaker Mixer - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
Nail Polish Shaker Mixer – an inexpensive option for those needing help mixing paint

Inexpensive and functional, the generic Nail Polish Shaker Mixer has been a go-to device for modelers and miniature painters for a long time.

Of course, even though the arrival of the dedicated mixing machines has changed what is available (improving things along the way), do-it-yourself (DIY) mixers/shakers and these off-indicated apparatus have always been popular.

At under $25, these part-time rededicated hobby mixers don’t have a lot of durability (even for nail salons). Rather, they are for the painter or hobbyist who needs a small boost.

Attach your model paint bottle or pot with the rubber bands (spares included), and hold down the button for a minute or so. If all goes well, your paint will be mixed up well, or much better than your aging (or lazy) body could do.

  1. Useful – 4/5
  2. Usable – 3/5
  3. Findable – 5/5
  4. Credible – 3/5
  5. Desirable – 3/5
  6. Accessible – 5/5
  7. Valuable – 4/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Very inexpensive
  • Works great for mixing paint
  • Holds many pot sizes
  • Spare rubber band holders

Cons

  • Lower quality construction
  • May suffer reliability
  • Somewhat loud

5. Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer – Rock solid vortex paint mixing (or anything, really)

Of all the vortex mixers on this list (and others), the Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer is the best all-around valued mixer (for anything, not just model paint).

Toping out at over $135, this vortex mixer is similarly priced to the Typhoon re-branded vortex mixer that sells on Etsy, eBay, and elsewhere online.

This vortex mixer uses a powerful, heavy duty motor with a variable power knob (to control speed) to quickly shake/mix anything in a closed, sealed container.

Models paints in most sized bottles or pots will fit nicely on the touch-operated mixing platform. The heavy weight and suction cups of the Four E’s Vortex mixer will keep the entire system stable while the machine does its job.

  1. Useful – 4/5
  2. Usable – 5/5
  3. Findable – 4/5
  4. Credible – 5/5
  5. Desirable – 3/5
  6. Accessible – 3/5
  7. Valuable – 4/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Heavy duty
  • Will last decades with frequent use
  • Stable platform
  • Industrial laboratory vortex mixer
  • Versatile for many sized bots, bottles, and containers
  • Powerful, adjustable motor speed

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Heavy
  • Moderately loud

6. Four E’s Scientific Mini Vortex Mixer

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Four E’s Scientific Mini Vortex Mixer – the small, budget-friendly version of the Four E’s Scientific Laboratory Vortex mixer

This Four E’s Mini Vortex Mixer the more budget- and size-friendly vortex mixer to the laboratory mixer above.

Similar in style and function as the LabGenius mini, this vortex mixer will easily sit on any hobbyist’s desk or workspace.

The simple light touch-to-operate platform will be fully accessible for users, even smaller children (who might be enjoying your hobby, too!).

  1. Useful – 5/5
  2. Usable – 5/5
  3. Findable – 4.5/5
  4. Credible – 5/5
  5. Desirable – 4/5
  6. Accessible – 4/5
  7. Valuable – 5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Fairly affordable
  • One of the best miniature vortex mixers for small paint volumes
  • Simple touch/press use
  • Small size
  • Cleans up easy
  • No maintenance required
  • Powerful vortex mixing

Cons


7. Scientific Industries Vortex Genie 

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - best paint mixer - best model paint shakers - Scientific Industries Vortex Genie - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
Scientific Industries Vortex Genie – model paint or art media mixing at its finest (and priciest)

Get the Vortex Genie-2 only if you can’t find a Typhoon vortex mixer and want the best out there. Indeed, at over $300, this is the vortex mixer for those hobby modelers or artists who have money to burn on the best products on the market.

(This is not the best value paint mixer for casual hobby use, but it certainly will do the job for decades without breaking service).

This vortex mixer also rates very high in other reviews.

Suffice it to say, this industrial mixer (of any art medium or liquid substance you can think of) will provide great use for any individual or business who needs this level of productivity.

  1. Useful – 5/5
  2. Usable – 5/5
  3. Findable – 4/5
  4. Credible – 5/5
  5. Desirable – 3/5
  6. Accessible – 3/5
  7. Valuable – 3/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Very durable
  • Heavy duty use
  • Popular in industry
  • Versatile mixing platform
  • Powerful motor for fast mixing action
  • Variable power knob
  • Constant-on, or touch switch (user-friendly)

Cons

  • Very, very expensive
  • Moderately loud
  • Heavy

8. Badger Paint Mixer

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Badger Paint Mixer – will come in handy for anyone who dabbles in arts and crafts or serious hobby work

The Badger Paint Mixer is particularly useful because you’re not attached to a wall outlet for power.

I have this paint mixer. I use it a lot when I need to mix large batches of paint for terrain-making. Because it is small and portable, I am able to move about my workspace with it.

For model train hobbyists, this could also serve well as a plaster scenery powder mixer, e.g., Hydrocal.

Or, you’re painting miniatures with coffee, and you need to stir up a wash.

A notable limitation of this mixer is that the mixing tip may be too large for some containers. You certainly can’t mix paint within Citadel paint pots, or model paints in dropper bottles, e.g., Vallejo Model color or Army Painter.

Keep in mind though, that at some point, you’ll want to mix up a larger volume of something in a plastic container or small cup. This mixer will be perfect for this use.

  1. Useful – 3/5
  2. Usable – 3/5
  3. Findable – 4/5
  4. Credible – 4/5
  5. Desirable – 3/5
  6. Accessible – 5/5
  7. Valuable – 4.5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Easy to clean
  • Very afforable
  • Mixes all types of paint quickly
  • Battery-powered
  • Easily portable for travel

Cons

  • Doesn’t fit all pots
  • May be messy

9. Electric Tattoo Ink Mixer

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Electric Tattoo Ink Mixer – not just for tattoo artists anymore

If the Badger Paint mixer above doesn’t fit your paint pots, the Electric Tattoo Ink Mixer will do the job. The disposable mixing tips are specifically designed to access small volume pots of ink, paint, or other media.

For the tabletop miniature painter, this is a nice portable alternative to the tabletop vortex mixers or hobby paint shakers.

The Ink mixer uses batteries and mixing tips that you can dispose of when you’re finished.

Of course, for the environmentally conscience of us, you can re-use the tips by washing them off. Drop them into an ultrasonic cleaner and buzz them clean.

Easy!

MORE: WHY AN ULTRASONIC CLEANER WILL HELP YOU PAINT MINIATURES

The nice thing about this ink mixer is that the motor doesn’t splash your paint/inks everywhere. You have a lot of control over the mixing.

  1. Useful – 4/5
  2. Usable – 4/5
  3. Findable – 4/5
  4. Credible – 4/5
  5. Desirable – 3/5
  6. Accessible – 5/5
  7. Valuable – 4/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Simple, proven mixer
  • Capable of mixing small volumes directly in the pot
  • Disposable tips
  • Easy clean up
  • Battery powered
  • Portable
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Disposable tips may waste paint each time you mix
  • Can re-use tips, but an additional hassle
  • Could be messy

10. Paint Shaker: Artis Opus Companion Series

Top 10 Recommended Best Model Paint Mixers and Shakers - Artis Opus Paint Shaker review - Paint Shaker: Artis Opus Companion Series - DIY paint mixer or shaker alternative
Paint Shaker: Artis Opus Companion Series – a beautiful vortex mixer, ’nuff said.

New to the market, the Paint Shaker from Artis Opus uses a similar design to other vortex mixers with the added bonus of aesthetic design (looks pretty doesn’t it?).

If you’re looking for a review of the Artis Opus paint mixer, you will have to wait a little longer to see what users think.

At the pricier side of hobby paint mixers (over $100), this is a luxury good for those looking to stand out. This is especially true because of the other “mini vortex mixers” that will likely do the same job.

The benefits of this mini-sized vortex mixer, of course, is the small size, touch operation, and variable motor speed knob.

Are you looking to mix thin, low-viscosity inks, or the thicker foundation paint with a lot of pigment? Adjust the motor power to fit the need.

This is a tried and true mini-vortex mixer design. It is sure to please many of its users.

  1. Useful – 4/5
  2. Usable – 4/5
  3. Findable – 3/5
  4. Credible – 3.5/5
  5. Desirable – 4/5
  6. Accessible – 4/5
  7. Valuable – 3.5/5

Overall Rating (out of 5)

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pros

  • Similar to the exemplary LabGenius Mini-Vortex mixer
  • Aesthetic design
  • Variable knob for adjusting mixing power
  • Touch operation
  • On-off switch
  • Stable platform
  • Light, portable

Cons

  • Expensive compared to similar mini vortex mixers or model paint shakers
  • Has not been on market for very long compared to other model paint mixers

Final Thoughts

Did we miss any favorites? Check out some DIY options for mixing model paint.

There are a lot of options for mixing/shaking model paint. But, in general mixers have several notable points you may consider:

  1. The best model paint mixers are valued for their reliability, small-footprint, and affordability
  2. Portable paint mixer systems use battery power (usually D-size cells), and can travel with you wherever you want to take your hobby
  3. More powerful vortex paint mixer machines use proprietary technology for industrial needs, e.g., heavy duty motors and controllers

Together, as with any hobby equipment, you will generally pay for what you get. Be willing to get better quality and function as you consider how much time you invest working in your hobby.

Save time with machines, so you can spend more of it enjoying the parts of the hobby that matter.

The best paint mixer is the one you use without realizing it’s even there.

Thanks for reading! Happy painting!


Summary

Here are the top 10 recommended paint mixers and shakers for painting miniatures and models (reviewed):

Image Model Key Features
Lab-genius-vortex-mini-shaker LabGenius Mini Vortex Mixer Most popular

Cost-effective vortex mixer

Small desktop footprint
Robart-Hobby-Paint-Shaker Robart Hobby Paint Shaker Best value

Versatile for all kinds of model paint
ProShaker-Version-2 ProShaker Version 2.0 Durable paint shaker

Self-contained holder system
Nail-Polish-Lacquer-Shaker-Mixer Nail Polish Shaker Mixer Budget friendly

Light-duty paint shaker
Four-E-vortex-mixer Four E’s Scientific Lab Vortex Mixer Industrial vortex mixer

Speed control

Stable platform
Four-e-mini-vortex-mixer Four E’s Scientific Mini Vortex Mixer Smaller version of the lab vortex mixer

Powerful enough for mixing hobby paints
Vortex-Genie-2 Scientific Industries Vortex Genie  Very expensive

Will last years

Mixes fluids in bottles or sealed containers of many sizes
badger-paint-mixer Badger Paint Mixer Battery-operated mixing tool

Best for larger volume mixtures
Ink-mixer Electric Tattoo Ink Mixer Portable, electric mixer

Small volume mixing

Disposable tips
artis-opus-shaker Paint Shaker: Artis Opus Companion Series Variable speed vortex mixer

Artis Opus design and aesthetic

Our top pick for best hobby paint mixer:

Best overall hobby paint mixer - labgenius mini-vortex mixer for model paints - tools for painting miniatures and models - scale modeling paint mixer

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