I’m needing a method to turn cotton into a fine powder for use as a source of cellulose. What suggestions would you give to accomplish this with materials/tools that could be obtained at local stores?

  • $\begingroup$ Would a blender followed by using a mortar and pestle grind it fine enough? $\endgroup$
    – roffster
    Jul 22, 2015 at 6:04
  • $\begingroup$ Though the mortar and pestle had come to mind, the blender has been less than successful in application. $\endgroup$
    – Adam Cat
    Jul 22, 2015 at 6:25
  • $\begingroup$ Have you tried shredding it by hand before putting it in the blender? To be honest, your only way to convert fibers into powder is through some sort of mechanical action. $\endgroup$
    – roffster
    Jul 22, 2015 at 6:27
  • $\begingroup$ At least several synthesis procedures I'm aware of and requiring cellulose as starting material use cotton as it is. $\endgroup$
    – permeakra
    Jul 22, 2015 at 6:48
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ In a lab I would freeze it in liquid nitrogen (so it becomes brittle) and then use a pestle and mortar or a cooled grinder. Probably not too easy to get liquid nitrogen for home though. $\endgroup$
    – Gerhard
    Jul 22, 2015 at 7:45

1 Answer 1


The content of cellulose in paper is not as high as that of cotton, however, it may be easier to use as a source if you do require a fine powder. Why do you require cellulose?


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