If you have been recently introduced to cigars by a friend, or you have had a long-term interest in them, then I am sure you have heard a bit about using a humidor to ensure that your cigars stay fresh and aromatic. Cigar storage should be one of the biggest concerns of cigar aficionados, and if you are thinking of finally moving from one or two cigars to dozens of then, then you would need to think about buying a cigar humidor.
Cigars require certain precise conditions to stay fresh for a long time, and you have to take care of the temperature, moisture and most importantly, the humidity. Therefore, you need a cigar humidor to maintain the humidity of your cigars, so that you can enjoy them for much longer. If you are planning to store your cigars for two weeks or longer, you can’t make do without a cigar humidor.
This article discusses cigar humidors in detail, and also lists down some of the best cigar humidors that you should consider buying. Let’s get right to it, then.
What is a Cigar Humidor?
Basically, a cigar humidor is a storage device for your cigars that helps maintain its humidity level. By maintain the humidity level, the humidor allows the tobacco leaves inside the cigars to expand and contract according to the humidity inside it. Reduced humidity levels can cause the tobacco leaves to shrink and lose their taste and aroma. Moreover, even high humidity can lead to the growth of mold or rotting.
There are numerous types of cigar humidors out there, and they vary in size, capacity, features, and numerous other factors that we will discuss later on. No matter what the size of cigar humidor you buy, each one will have certain components to lock in the humidity for cigars and provide them with the right conditions to store them.
How do Cigar Humidors Work?
A quality cigar humidor consists of several components that work together to maintain the humidity and other conditions for your cigars. Let’s have a look at the components and how they work to keep your cigars fresh and aromatic for a longer period of time.
The humidifier is one of the most essential parts of the cigar humidor, and its effectiveness and quality depends on the size of the humidor. As the name suggests, the humidifier provides your cigars with the right amount of moisture they need to keep the tobacco leaves inside your cigar from shriveling. Not only does the moisture help the cigar stay fresh, but also enables it to burn slowly.
Most cigars also have essential oils inside them, which add to their flavor and aroma. Generally, you need to keep the humidor between 62 and 70 percent to preserve its quality. There are numerous methods and types of humidification systems you can use to provides moisture to the cigars.
- Sponges: Some of the low-end and small cigar humidors make use of a sponge soaked in distilled water, which keeps minerals and mold away from your cigars.
- Floral Foam: Cigar humidors also have small foam blocks that are arranged in a floral formation and provide moisture to a bouquet, and also help in absorbing odors from the cigar. Floral foam is often used with propylene glycol in place of water to maintain 70 percent humidity.
- Crystal Gel: Crystal gels are meant to hold a lot of water weight, and they keep releasing moisture in the air around them which makes them useful for keeping cigars at the perfect conditions. They are absorbed in distilled water or propylene glycol, so that they release moisture slowly.
- Silica Beads: Silica beads are small beads with silica gel, which is known to absorb excess moisture. This makes them suitable for cigar humidors that have to be used in hot and humid conditions, so your cigars will stay fresh and moist for a long time.
- Humidipaks: These are special humidifiers that absorb or give out moisture inside the cigar humidor to maintain the humidity level at 70 percent. These humidifiers are encased inside a membrane, which allow them to dispense or absorb humidity.
- Electronic Humidifiers: Electronic humidifiers consist of a small device and they are mostly found in high-end cigar humidors. They make use of distilled water, and detect the humidity levels, increasing or decreasing them as needed.
The hygrometer is another important component of the cigar humidor, and its job is to detect the humidity level and indicate whether it needs to be increased or decreased. There are two types of hygrometers: digital and analog. Cigar humidors that have electronic humidity control are connected to the humidifier.
No matter which cigar humidor you have, it is very important to check its hygrometer every few weeks to ensure that it is working properly.
To maintain the freshness of the cigars, they also have to be kept at a certain temperature. Ideally, they need to be kept around 68 degrees Fahrenheit, with a safe range between 60 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit. While some cigar humidors come with temperature controls, you can make use of a thermometer to monitor the conditions inside humidors that don’t come with this feature.
High-temperature conditions often cause the formation of cigar beetle eggs, which can ruin cigars and make them unsuitable for smoking. If the cigar humidor is equipped with a cooler and heater for regulating the temperature, the thermostat will control both of them to maintain suitable conditions.
Most of the high-end cigar humidors have an interior made from Spanish cedar. They may either have a cedar lining on the walls or cedar shelves and drawers. The biggest advantage of using Spanish cedar in the cigar humidor is that it keeps insects and pests away, and also prevents the insides of the humidor from decaying. It also keeps cigar beetles away, while also preventing the growth of mold and mildew.
Moreover, Spanish cedar is also useful for absorbing and releasing water to maintain the moisture level inside the cigar humidor. All of these benefits is why Spanish cedar has been a popular choice for constructing high-quality cigar humidors, and if you talk to cigar enthusiasts and experts, they will tell you that this type of wood also imparts a certain flavor to the cigars that you store inside your cigar humidor, especially if you store your cigars without their wrappers.
All of these essential components work together to create the ideal conditions for your cigars to stay fresh and also retain their flavor and aroma. This makes the cigar humidor a must-have for people who are planning to store a large number of cigars for a long time.
How is a Cigar Humidor Used?
Once you have bought a cigar humidor to store all your cigars in proper conditions, you can set it up in no time. No matter which model or type of humidor you have bought, there are some common steps that you can take to set it up in no time.
Before you use the cigar humidor, you should soak a cloth in warm water and wrap the hygrometer inside it for 30 minutes. Next, remove the hygrometer and calibrate it to read between 95% to 97%. If the reading is already in this range, then you can move on to the humidifier.
The first step is to place the humidifier inside distilled water for 3-5 minutes. Once the time is up, remove the humidifier and wipe away any excess water. Next up, you have to line up the base of the cigar humidor with a plastic bag, and place a sponge dampened with distilled water on top of it. Lastly, place the humidifier with the hygrometer inside the lid of the humidor and close it.
You should leave the cigar humidor in this state for at least 12 to 24 hours. After this time has passed, repeat the process, and you should observe that the humidity level is between 60% to 75%. This would indicate that you can store your cigars in the humidor safely.
How Long Does a Cigar Humidor Last?
As mentioned above, there are various types and qualities for cigar humidors, and the quality also determines how long the humidor will last. Generally, cigar humidors don’t have a shelf life or expiry date, and with proper care and maintenance, you can actually prolong the life of your humidor for many years.
However, if you are looking for a cigar humidor that you can easily carry with you on your vacations and road trips, you would expect the humidor to encounter more wear and tear than other ones. Therefore, the lifespan of the cigar humidor you buy will depend on how you handle and use it. First and foremost, you should always place it where there is a very low chance of it getting knocked over. Moreover, you should also keep it away from direct sunlight and water as well.
What to Consider While Buying a Cigar Humidor?
There are numerous factors that come into play while you are choosing a suitable cigar humidifier to store your cigars and keep them fresh. These factors will help choose a humidor that won’t only provide a storage space for your cigars, but also keep them fresh and aromatic for a longer period of time.
As mentioned above, cigar humidors are available in numerous sizes, which is why this is the first thing you need to consider before choosing a cigar humidor. You may be surprised and fascinated to find out that there are even walk-in cigar humidors, which are as big as a room or a closet. They can be used to store a huge amount of cigars for a very long time, and they are also heavily priced.
However, if you only have a handful or a few dozen cigars to store in your cigar humidor, then you can make do with a tabletop or cabinet cigar humidor that doesn’t take up too much space and also has a smaller capacity as compared to the walk-in humidor. They can store up to fifty cigars easily, which are a sufficient amount that you would store at one time.
The size of the cigar humidor is also important for another reason. No matter what the capacity or size of the humidor is, the cigars shouldn’t be crammed up with each other, because this would cause them to lose their flavor and quality. Moreover, the cigar humidor shouldn’t be too large as it would cause the cigars to absorb excess moisture.
Another option for people who travel or move around a lot is portable cigar humidors, which are lightweight and have a compact size. Not only can you easily carry them around with you, but they will allow you to keep your cigars fresh, aromatic, and at the right humidity and temperature. Although these humidors have a lower capacity, they are also much more affordable.
Since cigars are made from plants and leaves, they need a certain level of humidity, just as plants do. Although cigars are made from dried plants, they still need humidity between 62% and 75% to maintain their freshness, taste, and smell. This is why the cigar humidors you come across will have a humidifier and hygrometer installed in them.
As you may have read above, the hygrometer is responsible for monitoring the humidity levels inside the humidor. When it indicates that the humidity level is higher, you need to do something to start absorbing the excess moisture to balance the levels. Moreover, when the hygrometer records a lower humidity level you need to check or replace you humidification system in order o produce moisture to restore the balance inside your cigar humidor.
If you are using an automatic hygrometer and humidification system, like the Cigar Oasis Plus 3.0 Electronic Humidifier, it will automatically detect the change in humidity and turn on or off as needed.
If you can swing the extra cash, choose a good quality humidor that features both an efficient humidifier and hygrometer, which work in tandem to regulate the humidity levels inside the cigar humidor. It will make your life so much easier.
Another great option for smaller humidors that do not have any built in systems are Boveda Packs. They are disposable humidification packs that offer 2-way humidity control. They add humidity into the humidor when its below their RH level, and absorb humidity when it gets its too high.
Another key factor that allows you to make an informed choice regarding cigar humidors is the temperature control feature, which is present in most of the cigar humidors that you will come across. The ideal temperature range at which cigars should be stored is between 62 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, and a good quality temperature control system would be able to detect the temperature inside the humidor and alter it if it doesn’t lie within the range.
No matter what the outside temperature, if you have the temperature control feature in your cigar humidor, you can set it at 70 degrees Fahrenheit and it would allow your cigars to retain their freshness and quality.
Other things considered, the capacity is another important factor that you need to think about while you are considering different cigar humidors for buying. If you have decided how many cigars you want to store at any given time, it would make the research and choice much easier for you. As mentioned above, there are different types of cigar humidors and they differ in their capacity as well.
For instance, if you want to store up to 50 cigars at a time, so that you don’t have to keep buying cigars frequently, you can make do with desktop or tabletop cigar humidors. Moreover, if you have to store just a dozen cigars, then a portable cigar humidor would also work for you.
Another key factor in the choice of a cigar humidor is the ring gauge of the cigars that you want to store. The larger the ring gauge, the fewer the cigars that can be stored in the cigar humidor. Therefore, make sure to check the capacity that is advertised for each of the humidors that you come across, so that you get the chance to tally them against your requirements and shortlist the best options.
Moving on, the materials also play a major role in the selection of a cigar humidor, and one of the most common materials that are used in its production include Spanish cedar and stainless steel. However, Spanish cedar is highly popular for constructing cigar humidors, all thanks to its ability to absorb excess moisture, prevent mold and mildew, and also for a wide range of other benefits.
If you are looking to use some other type of wood from which the cigar humidor, make sure that it is efficient and also works with the humidor to help in retaining the humidity and moisture inside the humidor, so that your cigars aren’t spoilt due to excess moisture, or lack of it. Another popular type of wood you can use is Mahogany, but it won’t provide the insulation and protection that Spanish cedar does.
Seal and Lid
The seal and lid of a cigar humidor is one of its most important parts, and an airtight seal is what can make or break your cigar humidor. The quality of the seal on the cigar humidor that you consider buying can affect the performance of the humidifier and hygrometer installed in its lid. Therefore, make sure to check out these tiny details in each product that you come across, so that you can maintain the freshness and aroma of your cigars.
Just like the seal is important for the cigar humidor’s effectiveness, the quality of its lid also matters. The hygrometer and humidifier is mostly installed in the lid of the humidor, which means that the lid should be made of a high-quality material. Otherwise, the quality of the devices inside the humidor won’t do anything to keep your cigars fresh.
According to cigar experts, it is best that you open the lid to your cigar humidor less frequently for the cigars to remain fresh and at the perfect conditions. Having a glass viewing window on the cigar humidor you buy will reduce the amount of times you would need to open the lid, so this is a bonus feature that you can look out for.
After you have evaluated all of the factors for choosing a cigar humidor, you can also look out for some additional features that would add value to your purchase. These features include digital displays, cigar cutters, ashtrays, digital humidifiers and hygrometers, electronic temperature control, and many others.
The 10 Best Cigar Humidors, In No Particular Order
1) Case Elegance Cherry Finish Spanish Cedar Humidor
Now that you have a ton of information regarding cigar humidors and how you should choose one, let’s have a look at the 10 best cigar humidors that you can consider buying. These options have been handpicked from hundreds of different options, and you will definitely be able to find one that suits your needs.Case Elegance Cherry Finish Spanish Cedar Humidor
Our top pick is the Case Elegance Cherry Finish Cigar Humidor, which is a compact unit with a capacity for 15 cigars. However, if you choose cigars with a lower ring gauge and thickness, you may be able to accommodate more than 15 cigars even. The Case Elegance Cigar Humidor is made from premium quality Spanish Cedar and weighs only 3 lbs. It measures 9” x 8.5” x 5.4” and can be easily stored and carried around.
The Case Elegance Cigar Humidor has a tempered glass display top, which allows you to easily spot the cigars. It also features a Spanish cedar shelf that offers moisture retention and keeps cigar beetles away. The humidor also features a sliding drawer where you can place your cigar cutter or lighter. The lid of this humidor is securely closed with a magnetic seal, which maintains the freshness of your cigars.
This cigar humidor maintains the humidity level between 65% to 70%, thanks to its onboard humidification system. Moreover, it also features a digital hygrometer that measures the humidity constantly. Overall, the Case Elegance Cigar Humidor has a solid and elegant construction, and it is suitable for cigar aficionados who don’t want to store more than a dozen cigars at any given time
2) Bald Eagle Handmade Cigar Humidor
The next item on our list is the Bald Eagle Handmade Cigar Humidor, which measures 7” x 10.1” x 4.25” and is another stellar option if you are looking for a compact humidor. This product weighs only 15 lbs. and can store 20 to 25 cigars, depending on their size and thickness.
The Bald Eagle Cigar Humidor is a handmade Spanish cedar box with a walnut finish that looks really elegant and sits perfectly on your table, whether at home or the office. The base of the cigar humidor is lined with premium quality and scratch-resistant velvet, so that it doesn’t scratch the surface of your desktop. Its lid has a tempered glass transparent top that enables you to see what’s inside without opening up the box.
This cigar humidor has a pre-installed humidifier and hygrometer that closely monitors the humidity level inside the box, and also regulates it to the right level, which is between 65% to 75%. The hygrometer’s analog display is fitted on the outside of the humidor, so you can have a look at the humidity levels without opening up the lid.
The inside of this cigar humidor has a removable partition that you can use to separate different brands of cigars. Not only does this cigar humidor have an eye-catching look, but it also allows you to keep your cigars fresh and aromatic for a long time.
3) Kendal Glass Top Desktop Cigar Humidor
Speaking of elegant and beautiful cigar humidors, check out the Kendal Glass Top Desktop Cigar Humidor, which has an amazing 60-cigar capacity and is made from premium quality authentic Spanish cedar. Moreover, it also features solid brass hinges on the lid, as well as an amazing dark mahogany finish. The bottom of the cigar humidor is lined with velvet to prevent it from scratching your desktops.
This cigar humidor measures 10.12” x 8.58” x 4.65”, and it is one of the best portable cigar humidors with a large capacity. The tempered glass top of the cigar humidor offers clear visibility into the cigars, and it also comes with a built-in humidifier, hygrometer, and dropper for keeping the cigars fresh for a long time. The hygrometer display is mounted onto the body of the cigar humidor, so you can clearly see the humidity level without having to open the lid.
When you open up the lid, you will be greeted with a gentle cedar aroma, which is also infused into the cigars that you store. There is a removable shelf that enhances the capacity of this cigar humidor. The removable shelf can be used to store different types of cigars as well, and the humidor also comes with a cigar cutter for added convenience.
4) Mantello Cigar Humidor
Another wonderful option for cigar humidors is the Mantello Cigar Humidor, which has a refined and handcrafted finish. This cigar humidor is made from high-quality rosewood and has a beautiful appearance, which makes it look perfect on your desktop in the home or office. Moreover, it also has a capacity of 20 to 50 cigars, depending on the size of the cigars.
The Mantello Cigar Humidor measures 2” x 8.6” x 4.3” and weighs only 8 lbs., making it compact and lightweight. Inside the humidor, you can find a cedar lining that offers a wonderful aroma and freshness. Moreover, this keeps bugs and cigar beetles away from your cigars, thus keeping them fresh and safe for longer.
This cigar humidor has a tightly sealed lid that prevents any air or light to escape from outside. The lid also has a tempered glass viewing window that offers you clear visibility into the cigars, and you can check the humidity levels through the analog hygrometer display installed on the exterior of the humidor. The hygrometer display has gold borders that beautify the appearance of the humidor.
This cigar humidor has a large capacity with a high-quality humidifier and hygrometer that maintains the ideal conditions inside the box, so you can keep a large amount of cigars at the perfect quality for a long period of time.
5) Capri Desktop Humidor
Our next pick among the best cigar humidors is the Capri Desktop Humidor, which comes in three different models. You can choose between a black finish, brown finish, and also a brown finish with a digital hygrometer. This cigar humidor can be used to store anywhere between 25 to 50 cigars, depending on what their thickness and ring gauge is.
All of the three models of this cigar humidor are virtually the same in terms of performance, and they can be used to keep your cigars fresh and flavorful for a long period of time. This cigar humidor sits well on your desktop or shelf in the home or office, and it also blends in with your furniture. The tempered glass lid allows you to view the cigars without opening the lid, and the hygrometer display lets you keep an eye on the humidity levels at all times.
The insides of this cigar humidor are lined with high-grade kiln-dried Spanish cedar, which give off a wonderful aroma and also keep your cigars fresh. With the Capri Desktop Humidor, you also have the option of gifting it to your friends with an engraved nameplate, which will make them feel very special.
6) Scotte Leather Portable Humidor
The Scotte Leather Portable Humidor is a uniquely designed and beautiful cigar humidor that has a portable construction and can accommodate 12-16 cigars, based on their sizes and thickness. This makes them highly useful for the home, office, and also for traveling purposes.
This cigar humidor has a high-quality leather exterior, along with a brilliant Spanish cedar interior that helps keep your cigars fresh and aromatic for a long time. The leather exterior is wear-resistant and retains its appearance, even if you use it for a very long time. The lid of this cigar humidor is fitted with a humidifier and hygrometer, and its display can be easily seen from outside, so that you don’t have to open up the lid again and again.
The interior of the cigar humidor maintains the humidity levels of your cigars between 65% and 70%, and also regulates their moisture levels and temperature. This means that you will always enjoy premium quality and flavorful cigars. This cigar humidor also comes with a velvet case for easy carrying on your travels.
7) Octodor Black Piano Finish Glass Top Humidor
Another stellar option that would suit your needs is the Octodor Black Piano Finish Glass Top Humidor, which is as elegant as it sounds. This cigar humidor has a refined finish and features a capacity of 100 cigars, which makes it perfect if you want to stock up on lots of cigars and keep them fresh for a long time
This cigar humidor measures 75” x 9.5” x 8.6”, which is the perfect size for a compact and portable cigar humidor. It is lightweight and its large capacity makes it perfect for people who enjoy cigars more frequently. Depending on the thickness and ring gauge of the cigars you buy, you can easily store between 50 and 100 cigars.
This cigar humidor has a beautiful matte black finish with a tempered glass top lid. It allows you to view your cigars without having to open up the lid every now and then. The lid is sealed tightly with a magnetic catch. Moreover, there is also an onboard accessory storage where you can hold your cigar cutters, lighters, and other accessories.
Inside the lid, you can find a cedar interior with a removable tray, as well as a movable partition that you can move around to store different types of cigars. The humidor is also fitted with a digital hygrometer and humidifier, which help in regulating the humidity levels of the cigars.
8) Newair 250 Count Cigar Humidor
Moving on to some larger cigar humidors, check out the Newair 250 Count Cigar Humidor, which brings you an astounding capacity of 250 cigars approximately, depending on the cigar size. It has an advanced electronic system with climate control and lock, which keeps your cigars at the optimal temperature always.
This cigar humidor has a cabinet-like construction, which allows you to place it anywhere in your home or office and store hundreds of cigars for a long time. This also means that you won’t be running out of cigars any time soon. It has an Opti-Temp system that keeps the temperature maintained at all times, as well as an accurate thermostat that adjusts the temperature between 54 to 74 degrees Fahrenheit.
This cigar humidor features removable and adjustable shelves that are made from premium-quality Spanish cedar and enhance the flavor and scent of all the cigars you stock in it. Plus, there is also a high-quality lock in the cigar humidor that you can use to prevent anyone from accessing your cigar collection.
9) Newair 840 Count Electric Cigar Humidor
The Newair 840 Count Electric Cigar Humidor is a premium quality machine that allows you to store a massive quantity of cigars of various brands, types, and sizes. More suited towards commercial spaces, bars, cigar clubs, and other places, this cigar humidor has a solid construction that keeps your cigars safe and at optimal conditions.
This cigar humidor has an elegant display with a transparent door that allows you to keep an eye on your cigars always. It features a built-in humidification system that regulates the humidity levels, as well as an advanced Opti-Temp heating and cooling feature that preserves your cigars at the perfect temperature. The digital display at the top of the cigar humidor allows you to monitor the conditions at all times without opening the lid.
This cigar humidor features Peek-In Spanish cedar drawers that not only provide storage for your cigars, but also lend their aroma to them. The cedar shelves also protect the cigars from insects and pests. Plus, the door-rimmed LED lights allow you to view the cigars easily without any additional lighting. This cigar humidor measures 23.62” x 19.01” x 32.30”, which makes it relatively compact for its amazing capacity.
10) XIFEI Acrylic Humidor Jar
Here comes another uniquely designed cigar humidor: the XIFEI Acrylic Humidor Jar. It is a simple cigar humidor that is made from high-quality acrylic material and allows you to view your cigars at all times. You can easily fit 15 to 18 cigars of varying sizes and thicknesses into this cigar humidor, and it weighs only 3 lbs., so you can easily carry it around.
This cigar humidor has a retaining ring with the top fixed, along with a tightly sealed rubber gasket that preserves the freshness and humidity of your cigars. The lid is also fitted with an analog display hygrometer that allows you to monitor the humidity levels always. The inside of this cigar humidor also features a low cedar wood lining that lends its aroma and freshness to the cigars.
Inside the cigar humidor, you can also find a removable rectangular analog humidifier that works hard to preserve the humidity levels inside the jar. The humidor also comes with a dropper that allows you to add or remove moisture from the cigars.
If you aren’t sold on a wooden cigar humidor, then you can make use of this durable and high-quality acrylic cigar humidor to keep your cigars fresh and aromatic for a long time. It has a small capacity of 15 to 18 cigars, so it is suitable for people who enjoy cigars less frequently.
Bonus: Raching MON3800 Cigar Humidor Cabinet with Ammonia Removal, 370L Wood Frame Cabinet for Cigar Storing&Aging – Black
This brings our guide to cigar humidors to an end. By now, you would have understood how cigar humidors work, and how essential they are if you really want to store your cigars and enjoy them for a long time. If you have never heard or read about cigar humidors before today, this article would help you know everything you need to choose the best one for yourself.
While we have handpicked the 10 best cigar humidors out there, you can also choose between many of the other wonderful products out there.