27 November 2015

REVIEW: Aldi Men's Gifts Specialbuy Ranges

Man up.

Men; the enigma sex of the human race. No, not really. Men are super easy to buy for at Christmas, as all you really need to show even a slight amount of effort is a gift that involves cars, tools, or boobs. Still, deciding between those three categories can be tricky, but fortunately good ol' Aldi have stepped up to the plate with a few special man-themed gift ranges. We delve in...

Aldi's recent TV advert is a nice parody of that annoying (and down-right bizarre) John Lewis commercial, and the ranges it promotes also do a good job of swaying your interest in the supermarket's direction. Several Specialbuy ranges are being released up until Christmas, with many of them featuring affordable gift ideas to bring an emotionally-withheld smile to that significant guy in your life. The ranges include...

A 18V Li-ion Drill & Driver Set (£99.99), a Premium Telescope (put to good use in the advert, £69.99), a pretty decent Bluetooth Soundbar (£39.99), a Turntable-cum-MP3 Converter (£29.99), a Smart Watch (£29.99), a Rotary Shaver Gift Pack (£19.99), an RC Drone with Camera (£49.99) and a Guitar (£34.99).

We know, pretty impressively eclectic so far, and the ranges also include mush less expensive items such as Men's Lambswool Knitwear (£16.99), a Dressing Gown (£9.99), Luxury Leather Gloves (£9.99), a smart little RC Mini Helicopter that shoots water (£22.99), Gaming Headphones (£14.99), Men's Pyjamas (£8.99), and Dickies Thermo Socks (£3.49) as well as many others. As ever, those lovely peeps at Aldi were kind enough to send us a small selection of the kit to try out. We had a look at:

The 18V Li-ion Drill & Driver Set

This electric tool set, which is part of Aldi’s Titanium+ range, is actually two separate hand tools; a 18V Cordless Hammer Drill and a 18V Cordless Impact Driver. That was a genuine and very welcome surprise, as we were expecting one tool that served both functions. As such, £99.99 actually seems quite reasonable for this set, as there is a lot here for both expert builders and have-a-go DIYers.

The tools themselves are a nice blend of metal and plastic, and both feel reassuringly sturdy in the hand. Each features a removable Li-Ion battery, and the set comes with a charger. You can actually get a full charge out of a battery after just an hour, which is a hell of a lot faster than we've ever been used to with drills of this price. Couple all that with a very strong plastic carry case, and you have here an excellent gift.

RC Mini Helicopter

Aww, Aldi really know what we like. Yes, it wouldn't be Christmas without flying a small remote controlled helicopter around the living room, shooting your relatives with water. This is a fun little gyro-copter, compete with physical controller (no annoying app to download onto your phone) and spare parts, which also boasts a unique water reservoir. Fill it up, fly it close to someone special (ideally someone you know quite well, or Christmas Day could get ugly) and give 'em a squirt.

Although just a small little tank, you can get a few good squirts out of this, with varying degrees of accuracy. Still, the chopper itself seems to behave very well, and is quick and easy to master – certainly a lot easier than a multi-rotor drone is. We found that this was most fun without having to spray your Uncle Dave in the eye, and enjoyed a neat little chopper at a great price for noobs.


Yeah, they sent us pyjamas, dudes! Usually we get socks from Aldi when reviewing their many Specialbuy ranges (running socks, cycling socks, fishing socks, motorcycle socks), and although we missed out on a pair of Christmas socks this time, instead we got socks for your whole body... PJs! Furthermore, these aren't the traditional 'shirt & trousers' pyjamas that your ailing grandfather would have died in, oh no – these are soft and cosy t-shirt pyjamas.

Although none of us would consider ourselves jammy-chaps, there has been a definite fight over the pair we were sent to test. There's something about both this time of year, and Christmas itself, that demands as much of your time as possible is spent snuggled up indoors, and these pyjamas certainly facilitate that.

Check out the rest of the ranges as they are released at www.aldi.co.uk/en/specialbuys

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