Cigars and Cigar Smoking

What You Need to Know?

Cigars are often seen as a symbol of sophistication and even masculinity, but the truth is they can be enjoyed by anyone. Composed of the filler (the internal tobacco strips), the binder (which tightly holds the filler), and the wrapper (the external tobacco leaves), cigars are perfect for celebrations, as well as just for chilling out with friends or solo.

With so many kinds of cigars out there, it can be difficult to know where to start if you’re a beginner. Additionally, there are many cigar accessories too, which can seriously make the experience more enjoyable. In this article, we’ll go over some of the things that differentiate cigars from each other, and we’ll go over some of the must-have accessories for cigar smokers!

Cigar shape and size

The fatter a cigar, the more intense the overall smoking experience will be. Thicker cigars burn cooler, longer, and have more depth and complexity of flavor than thinner cigars, which burn hotter, quicker, and provide a more solid, singular flavor.

The shape of the roll can also affect how a cigar burns. Some are thicker in the middle - the rate these cigars burn will change as you smoke, and so will the flavor, varying the experience.

Thicker cigars are better if you're a cigar aficionado who won't get overwhelmed by such a powerful smoke. If you're a beginner, it can be a good choice to smoke thinner and longer cigars for a lighter experience.

Cigar color

Lighter cigars are milder, with leaves picked before they are fully mature. Darker cigars with mature leaves are strong and full-bodied. Darker cigars would most likely be far too overwhelming for a beginner, but lighter cigars still offer an excellent smoking experience.

Cigar quality

Higher-quality premium cigars are generally more expensive than lesser ones. Luckily though, good cigars won’t always break the bank. You want a cigar that is 100% tobacco – don’t settle for anything less. It’s also important to check for any discoloration of the wrapper, and ensure the internal tobacco isn’t clumped together.

You should be able to get a good cigar for $10 – any less, and it might not be pure tobacco. Hand-rolled cigars are usually much more expensive than machine-rolled, but have more character – machine-rolled cigars are more consistent from one to the next.

The crucial cigar accessories

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Cigar cutters

Before you even smoke a cigar, you need to cut off the cap. Specialized cigar cutters provide a much cleaner cut than scissors or knives, which can cause the wrapper to start to unravel. Cigar cutters ensure your cigar burns evenly for a smoother smoke, and they’re also small enough to fit in a pocket.​

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Cigar lighters

Lighters are the best way to light a cigar. Disposable lighters are fine, but cheaper fluid lighters can negatively affect the taste of your cigar. A butane lighter with filtered fuel, or a torch lighter would be a better choice.

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You always need somewhere to catch ash while you’re smoking, to keep your smoking area (and yourself) clean. Specialized cigar ashtrays also often feature a place to sit your cigar when you’re taking a break from smoking it.

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Humidors and cases

Humidors are cases that let cigars be stored in the right levels of humidity, to prevent them from becoming too dry, or too damp. They often hold many cigars, making them great for collectors, or if you buy a few at a time. You can also buy travel humidors, and cheaper, leather cigar cases. These smaller cases keep your cigars much safer than being kept in a bag or pocket.