Product Review: SAL Alum

Alum is alum is alum, right?  For the most part I agree with that statement, I do not see the point in paying a ton of money for a block of alum that is, functionally, no different than any other block of alum.  Sometimes, however, a manufacturer comes along with a better design or a better set up that makes me take notice.  The first time I saw the RazoRock alum stick with its self contained case and rounded form, I took notice.  I liked the idea of a rounded alum block and the plastic case with its built in base just added to the allure, but at only 60g it was still difficult for me to justify purchasing a small block of alum when I could buy one that’s twice as large for the same price.  So, I used cheap and ugly looking alum from local markets and I kept my eyes open for anything that might do a better job.  My diligence was rewarded when I stumbled upon SAL alum being sold at Connaught Shaving.

I like Connaught Shaving, they may be based out of the U.K., but they also have the best overall prices of any of the vendors that I frequent and they have extremely fast shipping for an outfit based overseas.  A couple weeks ago I decided to finally buy some Real Shaving Co. Sensitive shave cream from Connaught Shaving, but the cream was so cheap that I felt like I needed to add a little something extra to my order to make it worth while.  While looking around in Connaught’s “other products” section I noticed the SAL alum blocks.  These blocks weigh in at 120g, have the same basic design as RazoRock alum, and cost an amazingly low £2.50/block or £4 /two blocks.  I popped two blocks into my basket along with the shave cream and placed my order.  Ten days later my package appeared.

SAL alum is a typical natural alum stick with a not so typical design.  The 120g stick is permanently fixed to a semi-soft plastic base which threads into a hard plastic case top.  The alum its self is well formed with no rough spots and is rounded so that it is much easier on the face than the more common rectangular alum blocks with their rough corners.  The alum’s design allows it to be applied smoothly and easily without any unpleasantness.  If you’re going to spend a little extra on alum then do it for the right reasons, a good design with a smooth form rather than one that’s priced excessively high just because of the name attached to it.  Everything about this alum makes me happy, from its excellent design to its low price, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a new alum block.

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