Progress’s Ombre Glass kettle is a perfect example of a glass kettle, uniting a soft smoky wave of glass with lashings of chrome-effect detailing. Its performance is better for smaller amounts of water than a full jug, and it could do with a few design improvements. I can’t complain about the low cost, though.
- Compact shape
- Reasonable price
- 3000W power for a fast boil for smaller amounts
- Concealed element
- Limescale filter tricky to remove and replace
- 500ml minimum boil
- Prone to visible limescale in hard water areas
- Sample didn’t sit snugly on base
- UKRRP: £32
Modern but not starkly minimalist, the Ombre Glass kettle by Progress manages that tricky feat that many small appliances face – having enough personality to appeal in a crowded marketplace, without becoming pricey.
Its band of smoky black glass is fairly subtle, though, so you’ll still be able to enjoy the visual effect of bubbling boiling water; if you want a perfectly clear model, the Stellar SEA35 might be for you. Design-wise, it could use a few improvements, but there are some great features. Highlights reliably fast boiling for smaller amounts and a design that’s compact enough to tuck under kitchen cabinets. These make it a good option for buyers on a budget, but for anyone on the hunt for the best kettle available, there are better options.
Design and features – Progress EK3891PBLK Ombre Glass kettle
- Accurate water level
- Concealed element
- Limescale filter fiddly to remove and replace
Like most glass kettles, Progress’s Ombre Glass number has done away with a water window, so measuring the amount inside accurately is easy. However, it’s also opted out of most markings for measurements, leaving only three – 500ml, a litre and the maximum boil of 1.5 litres.
There’s no cup measurements or increments between them, meaning you may well continually boil more than you need without a measuring jug at hand. A minimum boil of 0.5 litres only adds to that problem.
Exterior features are few – there’s a prominent button at the top of handle to open the flip-top lid, chrome detailing on the handle, top and bottom of the kettle and the lid plus a light on one side that illuminates when it’s boiling.
The on-off power switch is disappointing though. Situated at the base of the jug, it’s made from very thin plastic and feels flimsy. The switch on my sample could even be wiggled side-to-side. Considering that this is one of the main parts of the kettle that will be frequently in use, a more robust part would be an improvement. My sample also didn’t fit snugly on its base.
Performance – Progress EK3891PBLK Ombre Glass kettle
- One litre boils in 2 mins 19 secs
- Visible scale builds up quickly in a hard water area
- Full kettle boils in 3 mins 14 secs
There’s plenty to like about the Progress EK3891PBLK Ombre Glass kettle. For example, the push button to open the lid makes filling easy and something you can do one-handed, while the jug itself is fairly light and the chunky handle comfortable to hold.
It also has boil-dry protection should you knock the switch on by accident and a powerful 3kW element. This power comes in handy when boiling smaller amounts – our litre of water from cold took just 2 mins 19 secs, making it one of the faster kettles we tested. Larger amounts take longer than expected, however, with nearly another minute to boil the maximum 1.5 litres. Pouring was consistently smooth without drips.
Where there’s more of an issue is with limescale. Over a few days of use in a hard water area, our sample gathered small particles of scale on the walls and significant amounts on the base inside. The darker section of glass makes limescale look more prominent than when it’s behind plain glass too. Unusually, the instructions advise not using vinegar to descale, so you may need to budget for buying chemical descaler on a regular basis.
A stylish kettle that doesn’t cost that much, the Progress EK3891PBLK Ombre Glass Kettle is a great choice for those that want good looks on a budget. It’s better off in a soft water area, though, as limescale shows up quickly in hard water areas. If you want something different, then check out the guide to the best kettles.
Should you buy it?
If you regularly boil small amounts of liquid, then this glass kettle is ideal. It’s also a great choice if you live in a soft water area and want a low cost but stylish kettle.
If you don’t have time to descale regularly, particularly if you live in a hard water area, then there are better choices, as limescale really shows up. It’s also not so fast at boiling larger amounts of water.
Progress’s Ombre Glass kettle is a perfect example of a glass kettle, uniting a soft smoky wave of glass with lashings of chrome-effect detailing. Its performance is better for smaller amounts of water than a full jug, and it could do with a few design improvements. We can’t complain about the low cost, though.
You have to put at least 500ml of water into the kettle to use it, which is fairly standard for a modern kettle.