Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Qoleum Embrocation HOT

Spring is here. The Belgium Classics have begun and the weather this time of year is always a mixed bag. I purchased some new embrocation made in Belgium by a company called Qoleum. In March and April, the weather between sign-in and the final kilometers can go from -1 to 14 ºC wet or dry. These conditions are serious BKW conditions. All last season, I rocked the Freddy's Wet and Cold (amazing stuff, by the way), but since I had read good reviews of the Oleum, I had to give it a try. To follow are some thoughts on the Qoleum HOT:

Today's conditions: Overcast, mild, 4 ºC, no wind

The Qoleum is made from a 100% vegan base and goes on like wall paper paste: thick and gooey. Once it's rubbed into the skin, it disappears nicely, leaving a dull BKW sheen (good for the cyclist who wants all the protection of BKW without the added "too Euro for you" look). The Qoleum went on and stayed on for the entire ride. Like all exceptional equipment, it went unnoticed during the ride and it wasn't until I arrived in the warmth of my house that the burn set in. It took me a few seconds to realize what was going on and, in addition to the smoke coming from my knees and lower legs, I actually started to feel a bit of heat building in my core. Once I got into the shower I really felt the heat; in fact, I was wincing in pain as I tried to wash this stuff off. I had to turn down the heat of the shower and even break out the liquid dishwashing detergent. Man, that shit is hot and stubborn. I would recommend it if you are looking for the perfect linniment for an insanely cold cross race where you have a 45-60 minute exposure to the cold. But if you are looking for something for the spring or fall, Qoleum Hot is simply too hot..it's the chinese pepper you accidently left in your scoop of friend rice! If you're out on a group ride or putting in the solo training miles and it is cold enough for the Qoleum Hot you might consider some leg warmers or tights.

Overall Heat Rating - Insane
Euro Style Rating - Low, due to the dull sheen
Smell - Minty, PRO as hell
Durability - Extremely high, even dangerously high, this stuff sticks like glue


The weather will only get warmer, so stay tuned for some reviews of other BKW products including Sportsbalm, Freddy's Choice, and Greyhound Juice.

13 comments:

Robert said...

When can we expect a review of Greyhound Juice?

Please.

BT

sydney_b said...

Living here in Nebraska, I use just a tad of Qoleum HOT AND tights for subfreezing rides. (I know, a sensible person would get on the trainer, but I prefer the great outdoors.) Of course, the post shower ride is a burner, but once I realized there weren't actually flames and my skin wasn't actually melting away, it was OK, a little another plane of sensory experience, even. ;)

For what it's worth, I was post toasty the entire ride from toes to the tips of my fingers during last night's 1.5 hr ride. Temp 21 F, wind 17 mph.

Consequently, after using embrocation at my two biggest 'cross events and now during road training, I'm a complete fan and will soon accumulate an entire range of products for every weather conditions. Must treat my legs better. Thanks for tipping me off to the embrocation. This newbie read it here first.

Jonathan Benedict Wheeler said...

Dear Freddy,

I was real excited the first time i read about this stuff in this article. Ultra HOT embrocation equates to ultra HOT legs. last i checked HOT legs are P-R-O. so i ordered some from world cycling productions and slathered some onto the legs. i expected some thermo action, but felt nothing. It had the warming effect of jergins lotion. did i get a bad batch?

Sincerely,

Jonathan Wheeler

Radio Freddy said...

JBW - Tough to say if you got a bad batch. That stuff is warm, and sizzling when wet. From discussions with others who use embrocations regularly, not everyone gets the same results for whatever reasons. I would try it again and if it does not do the job, ask WCP to replace it. Thanks for reading. - RF

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately you have reviewed the fake stuff. Real Qoleum comes in a metal container and not plastic to prevent it degrading. Also it is made in New Zealand not Belgium by the wife of an ex-pro cyclist, Rebecca Day. Follow this link for the real deal!

http://www.qoleum.com/distribution.php

spokejunky said...

The day started out at 42 and went to 71 degrees when I first used this stuff. Great embrocation and review. Once it hit 68 degrees wow this stuff lit up my legs like they were chewing on a fresh stick of Big Red.

Justin said...

Apparently this IS the fake stuff. According to Rebecca from http://www.qoleum.com/ the stuff from Belgium is a knock off and they have been trying to get the Belgium company for years to stop using their name. And I quote

"Thank you for your inquiry regarding the real Qoleum. www.qoleum.com is the REAL QOLEUM which has been developed and tested on endurance athletes and manufactured since 1997.

" As with any good brand/product you will always be copied (just like buying a fake Rolex for $5 in China ) and yes we have been and still are fighting legal battles with regards to the fake Qoleum. "

So Freddy, maybe review the real stuff? I bought of couple of tins of both the fake and the real and I'll let you know.

corey w said...

Yeah, bummer here too. I got the stuff in the plastic bottle and it contains about as much heat as toothpaste.

I have used other stuff that works. I am going to go the refund route with this garbage.

Next time something from the Record line, i know it is legit and works!

Radio Freddy said...

Corey W - Sorry to hear the products you purchased were bunk. I sent a request to Qoleum for some additional info on the counterfeit products. While visiting their site thanks to Anon: 3-6 and I came across this:

"Be aware of counterfeit products in Belgium. Qoleum is a trade mark product made in New Zealand and has distinctive aluminum packaging. If in doubt please contact info@qoleum.com with where and when you bought your product and we will replace with the real Qoleum product!"

The stuff that I bought was extremely hot. So there was never any question about how it works.
Check back and as soon as I get word from Qoleum I will post it.

- RF

Anonymous said...

I got the plastic tub from WCP's showroom and used it on a nasty 35 degree day in Minneapolis yesterday. Hot, hot, hot. The legs burned in the post-ride shower like nothing I've felt before.

Radio Freddy said...

Just a quick update on the counterfeit products. I sent an email to Qoleum per Qoleum's instructions inquiring about counterfeit products and replacements. No response. Nothing. This last attempt marks my second attempt in the last 12 months to get clarification and a replacement as noted on the site. To date there has been no reply from them.

- RF

JG said...

ar as I can tell, Freddy reviewed the real stuff... I don't think Qoleum has always used aluminum packaging. You'll notice, too, they changed their logo from the one on Freddy's tub of embrocation to the newer one found on www.qoleum.com.

Seemingly, this is the counterfeit: www.qoleum.be

Radio Freddy said...

I just received an email from Qloeum; stay tuned for clarification on the counterfeit issue and a review of the "real-deal" HOT!