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How to Smoke a Cigar

If you're a beginning cigar smoker, don't just go to a tobacco stand, buy an expensive cigar and smoke it. Learn the correct way to appreciate a quality cigar before you light up.


  • Step 1: Ask for advice Ask a quality tobacconist for advice before buying a cigar. Experts suggest that beginning cigar connoisseurs start with a mild cigar.
  • Step 2: Examine the cigar before you buy Physically examine the cigar in the tobacconist's humidor. Look for cracks or flaws in the tobacco wrapper. This can affect the way it smokes.
  • TIP: Gently squeeze up and down the cigar's body, looking for lumps and soft spots.
  • Step 3: Know how to cut a cigar Know why you should properly cut a cigar. Don't just bite off the end. It can affect the quality of the draw, so a cigar cutter is a must. The best cutters are V-cutters, piercers and guillotines.
  • Step 4: Properly light the cigar Light the cigar the proper way without inhaling. Hold the cigar at least a half-inch from the top of the match flame. Roll the cigar as you light it, making sure that the outer ring is lit.
  • TIP: Fuel from a lighter can affect the taste of a cigar. Use matches or a lit slice of cedar.
  • Step 5: Take a puff Take a puff of your cigar. Don't inhale like you'd inhale a cigarette. Set the cigar down between puffs to avoid the draw from getting too hot.
  • Step 6: Know the correct way to remove an ash Know when and how to remove an ash. Flicking an ash from a cigar can cause an uneven burn. Carefully roll the ash off the cigar, using the edge of the ashtray.
  • TIP: Cities like Chicago, Toronto, and New York enforce laws against smoking cigars in public places.
  • Step 7: Know how to relight a cigar Know how to properly relight a cigar. You can relight longer-sized cigars and enjoy them the next day only if the cigar is more than half its original size. Now you're ready to smoke like a connoisseur.
  • FACT: Pink Floyd lyrics in the song "Have a Cigar" are Roger Waters' sharp dig at hypocrisy in the music business.

You Will Need

  • Tobacconist
  • Quality cigar
  • Cigar cutter
  • Matches
  • Ashtray
  • Slice of cedar (optional)

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