A premium cigar is a product of masterful craftsmanship. As we’ve detailed throughout this series, it takes months of hard labor and the combined expertise of dozens of artisans to produce a fine cigar. And there’s nothing worse than spending a lot of money on a great cigar only to have the smoking experience ruined because of improper storage. Indeed, even the best, most carefully crafted cigars won’t last for long outside of an ideal environment. While reputable cigar retailers shouldn’t have much problem storing cigars, individual consumers should understand some basic best practices for keeping their cigars fresh and viable for long periods of time.

Cigar Storage 101

Buying a box of cigars can be a fun and exciting experience. Yet, unless you plan on smoking them/giving them away over the span of a couple of days, you’ll need a plan of action for storage. That’s because cigars are natural products. In essence, cigars are just collections of tobacco leaves that will wither and dry out unless properly cared for. That’s where a humidor comes in. Humidors come in a litany of shapes and sizes, but at their core, humidors are simply enclosed places with specially-regulated temperatures and humidity levels. Experts recommend that cigar smokers should store cigars in areas with a relative humidity of 65-75%, and at a temperature of around 70 degrees fahrenheit.

In ideal conditions, a cigar should be able to be stored “indefinitely” in a quality humidor. Obviously, there are natural limitations on everything, and a cigar may actually not benefit from being aged for an excessive period of time. (Think 20 years or more.)

Cigar Storage Best Practices

The most common storage issue that affects cigar quality is low humidity. Humidors that haven’t been correctly seasoned or maintained will lose humidity over time and cause cigars to dry out. In order to keep humidity levels at an optimal level, cigar enthusiasts should utilize humidification tools –– like Boveda packs –– to introduce moisture into the humidor in a controlled manner. Correctly seasoning a humidor, stocking it with humidification packets, and changing them as needed are three basic, but crucial steps you can take to preserve your cigars.

Though it is a less-common problem, it is possible to over-humidify cigars. Cigars that are exposed to too much moisture may develop mold or become spongy to the touch. Lastly, cigars may also be destroyed by small insects called tobacco beetles, which lay their eggs on tobacco leaves. Keeping your cigars in cellophane wrappers can help prevent tobacco beetles from ruining an entire box of smokes.

S2C Storing Image 2

Fast Facts You Can Use

  • Distilled water is the preferred solution for seasoning a humidor. Using tap water will lead to major issues –– including mold.
  • Humidors are often made out of cedar wood, but some –– like acrylic humidors –– are completely clear. Cigar shops may convert entire rooms into humidors.

Conclusion

Ready to test your knowledge and earn a badge? Then take our quiz on this lesson here. And don’t forget to check out the other Seed to Cigar features on Cigar World to complete your cigar education!

Ready to earn the Storing Badge?

Question 1: True or false: it’s okay to season a humidor with tap water.

Correct! Sorry, that’s not the right answer.

Seasoning a humidor with tap water will lead to mold and other issues.

Question 2: What insect presents the biggest threat to cigars in humidors?

Correct! Sorry, that’s not the right answer.

Tobacco beetles are small, destructive insects that eat tobacco leaves.

Question 3: True or false: some humidors can be the size of an entire room.

Correct! Sorry, that’s not the right answer.

Some humidors are large enough to contain thousands of cigars!

Question 4: What is considered the ideal humidity range for storing premium cigars?

Correct! Sorry, that’s not the right answer.

Somewhere between 65% and 75% humidity is considered optimal by most cigar connoisseurs.

Congratulations!

You got {{correct}} out of {{totalQuestions}} correct!

  • You've earned the: {{badge.Title}} badge!

Better luck next time.

You got {{correct}} out of {{totalQuestions}} correct!

Previous Article: 7: Banding & Boxing Cigars

For the most part, cigars look a lot alike. Sure, there are certain cigar oddities –– such as excessively long cigars or cigars that come in bizarre shapes. But, generally speaking, a majority of cigars share a similar size, shape, and color. If you were to walk into a cigar shop, pick a cigar at random and remove the band, it would be incredibly difficult for anyone –– even an experienced cigar smoker –– to identify the stick with any degree of accuracy.

Next Article: A Guide to Cigar & Whiskey or Whisky Pairings

There ain’t much in this life that’s more perfect than enjoying a delicious hand rolled stogie and a glass of your favorite whiskey or whisky, depending on your preferences. However, even for the most sophisticated cigar guru, with so many choices of cigars and whiskey (or whisky) it can be a little trying from time to time to know what to pair with what. 

So, pour yourself a glass, light up a stogie and learn why cigars and whiskey pair so well together–and get some suggestions on our favorite combinations.

Join Cigar World Testing Lab

Comments

  • Member Avatar
    (14 days ago)

    Awesome Quiz.

  • Member Avatar
    (6 months ago)

    Great knowledge!

  • Member Avatar
    (6 months ago)

    Keeping a digital hydrometer calibrated is my biggest issue. I have a cheap humidor off amazon that works great but takes patience. Keep it out of the sun and maintained proves you dont need to spend hundreds on a humidor.

  • Member Avatar
    (6 months ago)

    In Missouri, I fight temp/humidity issues every winter...

  • Member Avatar
    (6 months ago)

    Just rolling right through these quizes! Love the extra knowledge...

    • Member Avatar
      (6 months ago)

      This is great! Love the knowledge!