Shell semitransparent, plump, with a markedly cyrtoconoid outline, short spire and 5-6 moderately swollen whorls, the last one being relatively large. The sutures lie, in profile, at the base of V-shaped excavations. Surface, except on base of last whorl, marked by oblong reticulations, elongated along the whorls. There are 15-17 spiral ridges on the last whorl, 7-9 on the penult, then 5-6 and 2-3 on the next. The costae are prosocline and more variable in number: 16-22 or more on the last whorl, 13-18 on the penult, then 12-17 and 8-15 on the next. They die out on the last whorl before reaching the base. The aperture is pointed and much narrower adapically than in the other Alvania species and with a peristome everted basally. Umbilicus absent. Last whorl occupies three quarters of the shell height, the aperture half.
Up to 6 x 4 mm.
Cream. The apex is sometimes orange yellow.
The body of this animal is like that of other species in the genus.
It lives amongst algae and under stones at LWST and below.
Found alive only off the Channel Islands, although dead shells have been recorded from further north (Distr. A. lactea). Elsewhere, it extends south to Morocco and the Mediterranean.