Can I see prices in my country's currency?
Yes. The site displays prices in all major currencies by clicking on the "Change Shop Currency" drop down menu to the left of this page. You can place your order in your currency, however your card will be charged in Pound Sterling.
I don't have a credit card. Can I pay by bacs or money transfer?
If you live in the UK you have a wide choice of payment options. You can pay via credit card or debit card, through Paypal, Google Checkout or Sagepay. You may also pay via bacs, a confirmation of our bank details will come up once your order has been placed.
EU based customers have the option to pay via bacs transfer into our German Euro account. Click on "bank transfer" when checking out and we will email you our bank details for payment.
If you live anywhere else in the world you can pay by credit or debit card, via Paypal or Google checkout or via Sagepay. Or use Paypal's bank transfer system - you don't need a paypal account.
How long does delivery take?
Our turnaround time currently is 4-5 business days. You will receive an email confirming that your order is being processed and held in a queue. Once it has been packed and shipped you will receive a dispatch email. If weather conditions or exterior circumstances influence the delivery of your order then please add at least 1 week for UK deliveries and at least 2 weeks for international deliveries.
Is your website reading impaired people friendly?
We recommend you use Text Aloud, a software that enables you to have text from our website read to you. Text Aloud is a fantastic software program for people who are sight impaired (blurred vision but not totally blind), suffer from dyslexia or eye strain. We use it in the office if we get bored reading page long instructions :-). You can download a free trial version here: http://textaloud.en.softonic.com/. It is easy to install and integrates itself into your browser of choice. You simply highlight the first word of the text you want to hear (obviously this doesn't work for completey blind persons but we trust that you already have the right equipment to access websites from your computer...) and click on "speak" in the toolbar and the text is read back to you.
When do I receive your 5% loyalty discount?
We now have a loyalty scheme whereby you receive points for every order you place. From 20 points upwards you can redeem these against any product from our range.
How do you justify the fair trade aspect of your business?
Sabine has been looking into membership of various organisations such as the FLO, BAFTS, WFTO and so on. We are currently considering membership of BAFTS and WFTO however due to the nature of our business they find it difficult to classify Cebra - we import AND we produce our own range (the skincare for example) and the above mentioned organisations sofar only offer either the one or the other membership. In the meantime we continue to source raw materials and finished products from a) fairtrade importers that are already members of a fairtrade organisation and b) direct suppliers from countries such as Ghana, Nigeria or Kenya. For example we now support a number of African co-operatives run by local people who supply a wide range of raw materials to skincare producers. In addition we source raw materials for our Cebra ethical skincare range from members of Phytotrade Africa but we also put emphasis on supporting local UK based farmers and suppliers for our essential oils for example. We buy finished items from Kokskraal Handicraft, an initiative based in South Africa that support local Xhosa men and women; African crafts from Global Exchange and baskets from Swahili Imports and Baskets of Africa (both are members of the Fairtrade Federation). In short - we support a wide range of businesses and direct suppliers that we have vetted for their fairtrade ethos and principles and that we visit in person where possible.
What preservatives do you use in your skincare products and why?
We use mainly Preservative 12 which is a combination of Phenoxyethanol and Ethylhexylglycerin. This is as close to a natural preservative as one can get without compromising the organic and vegan status of a product. Generally speaking we don't use preservatives in any products that don't contain hydrosols or water. Both ingredients attract bacteria once introduced to air no matter whether you store them cool and dark. In view of hygiene and general consumer safety we prefer to use Preservative 12 so that fungi and mould cannot develop. These can cause serious illnesses and death if not kept at bay. We do not use parabens or other ingredients that are deemed unsafe or dangerous and all our aromas are based on essential oils and organic plant extracts.
We can produce skincare products that are completely free from any preservatives, however these will have to be used within 2 - 3 weeks of opening and they must be kept in the fridge for storage. You may also not use your fingers but a stainless steel spoon and sterilize this after each dip into your jar or bottle. Please ask for price and details if you are interested in these skincare items. We would be happy to advise you further.
All oil based and non aqaueous products are free from preservatives. We use natural plant derived Vitamin E and vegetable glycerin derived from organic coconut to keep oxidisation at bay which can cause oils to go rancid.
Are the ingredients in your skincare organic? What about fair trade?
Sabine uses ingredients that come from organcially grown base materials and are harvested and produced without the use of chemicals. Whilst not every ingredient is certified organic - mainly because a lot of the co-ops we source materials from cannot afford organic certification - we strictly never buy or use anything that we know has been treated with insecticides or pesticides. We also make sure that all our suppliers receive a fair price and that all ingredients qualify as "fair trade" - again because of financial restrictions many suppliers cannot pay for certification, however our whole ethos is based on fair trade and we support small producers and small scale farmers every step along the way. Where Sabine has to use middlemen for certain ingredients, she makes sure that they comply with our policy and that the chain of supply is not made up of more than two middlemen. In most cases co-ops sell to registered IFAT or BAFTS wholesalers because they receive a higher price for the quantities they deliver to these wholesalers than for smaller quantities sold directly to end users and because the co-ops don't have the infrastructure like courier service and export facilities that would make selling directly to end users (i.e. us) feasible and achievable.
Palm Oil - What is your stance on this?
We are pleased to announce that we have sourced fairtrade, unrefined palm oil from a Ghanese co-operative. Contrary to Malaysian palm oil this product is sustainably non-destructively harvested from existing trees (i.e. non-plantation). It has a characteristically deep orange colour and is of food grade quality which means it can be used for cooking as well as in soaps, creams, lotions and skincare in general.
And how should I store your skincare products?
Please do not store oils in a very cold fridge unless advised on the website or on the label to do so. Oils in particular don't take kindly to very cold temperatures and may turn into butters and rancid upon warming up. The best temperature to store oils is between 15 and 25 degree centigrade, not near a heat source i.e. radiator and out of direct sunlight. Gels, creams and lotions on the other hand should be stored cool (but again, not in a cold fridge) and dark. A cupboard in your bedroom for example would be a good place, or a shelf in your larder. This helps to keep your skincare product as fresh as possible and prolongs its shelf life.
Are your products tested on animals?
Our skincare contains only approved ingredients - either of organic certified, vegan or vegetarian origin. Everything is cruelty free including the ingredients. We only buy from reputable suppliers that have been approved by the Vegan Society or that we have known for a long time and where we are 100% certain that they don't sell ingredients that have been tested on animals. The law in the EU has changed in any event and suppliers are now legally obliged to state whether ingredients have been tested on animals. Such ingredients are not appropriate for use in our skincare and as such we never buy them.
What about your product packaging?
All our skincare is now packaged in fully reusable and/or fully recyclable containers. We aim to source recycled containers in the near future, however those are difficult to find in the UK and because we don't want to increase our carbon footprint, importing these containers from the US for example is currently out of the question. The best website for information about recycling plastics is: http://www.recoup.org/business/default.asp
Not only are all our aluminium containers lined with EPA which is a special resin that prevents leaking into skincare, all our containers are made from recycled aluminium and can be recycled again and again which is far more eco friendly than say HDPE plastic containers which indeed have a tendency to leak (ie. water bottles can still be made from HDPE and that means leaking of chemicals into drinking water!) especially if they are filled with hot substances.
As for other containers we use recycled PET jars and bottles and these have been proven to be leak resistant and far better for the environment too however some products such as melted shea butters can cause PET to warp - which is why we fill them into the aluminium containers as mentioned above.
We reserve the right to change packaging especially for our skincare if we feel it suits the prodcut better and if weather conditions deteriorate (i.e. during the summer). Images are for illustration purposes only.
How is my order packaged then?
We recycle as much as we can. Cartons for example are reused. If they are still in good order then we use them to package your orders in. They may not be in pristine condition, however they are perfectly fine and protect your goods - we just don't want to cut up the cartons and throw them in our recycling bin just yet if they can be reused. Smaller and less breakable items are either sent in small cartons, cardboard backed envelopes or a 100% bio degradable bag that starts to disintegrate once it has been expose to sunlight.
For wrapping we use either recycled corrugated cardboard or bio degradable bubble wrap. We may use shredded paper and wood wool which we buy from our local woodmill. We urge you though to reuse packaging as many times as possible as this helps to reduce the impact on our landfill sites. At the end of the day it's not the pristine state of the postal cartons that matters - it's the preservation of our natural environment.Frequently Asked Questions