You love cigars, and we love ‘em too. That’s why we’ve created the ultimate guide to find the right accessories for the perfect smoking experience. Everything from humidors to cases, hygrometers and more, we’ve included it in this list. We’ll also explain how to use each tool, and why they’re important to have in your cigar collection. Of course you don’t need everything on this list - these are just the basic items you may want to investigate now or in the future.
Each cigar aficionado has their own setup for storing their cigars and getting the best draw from each one. You can be really extravagant or keep things simple - it really doesn’t matter. As long as you’re enjoying your stogies it doesn’t matter how much you spend on auxiliary equipment. But, we’re not going to lie, the smoking experience is better when you don’t have to improvise. The right gear for your home can make a major difference in the way you appreciate smoking.
Above all, you absolutely need a humidor. With everything else you can kind of get away with an alternative or make your own tools. But a humidor is essential. They’re specially made to seal in moisture and heat. Cigars must be kept in a warm and humid place, because the tobacco plant is grown and thrives in tropical environments. The humidor recreates that natural environment so the plant stays fresh and the the flavor stays strong.
So, you need to get a humidor first. Once you do, you can get into other gadgets and accessories on CheapHumidors.com. We’ll get into the specifics later, but you may want to look into ashtrays, cigar cases, cutters, and humidor setup kits. We also have replacement or add-on hygrometers and humidifiers. If you don’t know what any of these terms mean, that’s alright! We’ll teach you. And if you get confused, head over to our Cigar Glossary for a list of tobacco terms and slang.
We’re going to go through the basics, but of course feel free to explore all of CheapHumidors.com to build you personalized cigar setup. Some items in our gift section are additions for the guy or gal who has a pretty good sized collection. You might want to check out our personalized and engraved cigar cases, humidors, and gift sets. But if you’re not sure where to start, this guide will steer you in the right direction.
Most people get a humidor with their first real order of cigars. A basic personal humidor can cost anywhere from $15 to over $150, depending on the size and manufacturing quality. Small humidors for home use are essential, but a travel-size humidor can be a lifesaver. Some can double as home or travel humidors depending on how small they are. But you really do want to have a humidor you can take in the car or on the road.
You need a travel size to store in suitcases or travel bags. Usually humidors made for travel withstand heat and are made of more durable materials than personal humidors. While some are made of hardwoods, many are made of plastic. Most caddy-style travel humidors are made of hard plastic, and are essentially waterproof and scratch resistant. You can take them on boats, carry them while hiking or camping, and store them in your suitcase without worry.
These are our top five travel humidors. Each of these comes highly recommended by our team and by our long-time customers. If you want to learn more about these, check out the product pages and read the reviews. But without further adieu, here’s our top five list for humidors:
The Traveler 5 Cigar Humidor.This is our simplest yet most practical travel humidor. It’s lined with cedar, but has a mahogany finish and scratch-resistant felt bottom. It has a built-in humidifier so your smokes will stay flavorful wherever you go. Take this with you for your next weekend getaway or wild adventure. You’ll want to enjoy a cigar at the end of the evening.
Cigar Caddy 3140 2 Cigar Travel Humidor. While this case only holds two sticks, it’s perfect for the outdoor sportsman. It’s waterproof, crushproof, and lined with foam to protect your cigars from wear. You could almost fit this caddy in your cargo pockets. You will definitely want this the next time you go fishing or kayaking. Heck, why not take it on that mountain climbing trek you’re buddy’s been begging you to go on next summer? You’ll be ready with this kick ass case.
Leather Aluminum Cigar Tube. This humidor is one of our favorite designs. The aluminum lining makes it incredibly durable, retaining a nice and humid environment. But, the exterior is covered wrapped in leather, so it still looks classy. This case fits three cigars at a time. It has a glass hygrometer and humidifier, so you can regulate the humidity even when you’re travelling. Plus, this case is incredibly compact.
Triple Travel Accessory Kit. You don’t have to worry about leaving anything behind with this cigar travelling case. It comes with a lighter and guillotine cutter, so you’ll be ready to light one immediately when you take a break on the road. It carries up to four sticks at a time. You can impress your road buddies now that you’re prepared and organized, unlike they are.
Six Cigar Leather Travel Case. This case has a sliding six-tray interior, lined with cedar. It also has a built-in foam humidifier so you won’t have to worry about your cigars getting too dry. The leather is sleek, durable and will definitely impress your friends. This case looks smaller than it actually is. But it’s practical and will hold up to anything you put it through.
All humidors need a humidifier to be effective. The humidifier is the device that keeps moisture in the air inside your humidor. So, your humidifier is really the determining factor as to whether your humidor is effective or not. A quality humidifier will keep cigars fresh for a long time - poor quality ones will either oversaturate or dry them out. Choosing your humidifier is just about as important as choosing your humidor, although it may not seem like it.
You have three basic types: foam, gel-based, and electronic humidifiers. Traditional humidifiers are made from a special type of sponge, which soaks up distilled water and releases it into the air. These need to be refilled about once a week, and you have to be vigilant about checking your hygrometer. When you recharge your humidifier, it will typically cause a sharp increase in humidity levels, above what you would normally want. After that you’ll have to watch the hygrometer to see when the levels drop and you need to refill it.
Foam humidifiers must be filled with a special solution of distilled water and propylene glycol. The propylene glycol is used to control humidity levels more accurately. It limits water from evaporating over 70% humidity. You can mix the solution yourself by combining a 50.50 ratio of propylene and distilled water. You can also get a pre-mixed humidor activation solution from CheapHumidors.com
Unlike foam humidifiers gel-based and electronic ones both absorb and release moisture. This makes them better at controlling humidity, so that you always have the 70% environment. Gel-based crystal humidifiers have beads inside them that passively release moisture until the humidity reaches a peak; then they absorb the excess and repeat the cycle. Electronic humidors come with built in hygrometers that control the water release and absorption based on its readings. Both are great tools for a more advanced aficionado’s collection.
We have an advanced selection of humidifiers online. But these are our top picks for each type:
For traditional humidifiers, we recommend the Paradigm PSH CC Humidifier. If works with humidors holding up to 30 cigars. It’s one of our highest quality manufacturers, but also affordable for a first-time humidor buyer. You only need to recharge this one every three months. It also resists bacteria and fungus with its aluminum casing.
The best crystal humidifier we have is the DryMistat Crystal Humidity Tube. It automatically sets to 70% humidity. You just fill it up with distilled water and check it every now and then to make sure the beads are nice and swelled. If the humidifier beads shrink, it means they need more water. This humidifier is so simple, and you can move it to your travel humidor if necessary.
The Cigar Oasis Excel Electronic Humidifier is our most popular humidifier by far. It wins over most of our customers because it’s so accurate and they can humidify over 3000 cigars at a time. These humidifiers are a little complex, so we’ve created a separate guide if you’re interested in purchasing one for your personal humidifier.
Really, there isn’t much of a point having the rest of these cigar knick knacks until you can actually light your stick. While going mountain-man style and lighting your stogies over a fire may sound cool, it’s hard to convince your friends to do the same or wait for you to figure out how to start one in the first place. Every now and then smoking over a campfire is fun, but in your daily life you’ll want a nice lighter to use. There are three main types of lighters: soft flame, torch flame, and combos. Each one has its own unique purpose, and are preferred for different occasions
Torch lighters get their name because they burn fast and bright. These lighters are preferred among older aficionados because the flame is easier to use and burns hotter than a soft flame or your cheap gas station lighter. But you do have to light slowly or you’ll scorch the foot. Scorching can lead to a bad flavor or unpleasant burn. Torch flames are best for toasting. Torch flames use more butane, making them better for lighting outdoors. You’ll definitely prefer these to a soft flame lighter if it’s windy or you’re trying to light one fast.
Our favorite torch lighter is the Colibri Enterprise Triple Torch Lighter with Punch. Our VP Kelly picked this as her personal favorite lighter. She absolutely loves the Enterprise brand and can vouch for this lighter as one of the nicest we have in stock. This triple flame has a stainless steel 8 mm punch, and comes with a built in cutter. It’s on the upper end of quality for cigar lighters.
Soft flame lighters are considered more refined than torch flames. They make a great pair with a nice glass of whiskey and your handlebar mustache.Soft flames don’t burn as quickly, but can be enjoyable to use for later evening herf gatherings . Soft flames are also better for relights of your favorite stick. These lighters don’t burn as hot because they use less butane. The efficiency of butane also makes them less accurate and therefore harder to light. Most people prefer torch flames to soft flame lighters, but we think both deserve their place in your go-to gear collection.
The Vector KGM Rapid Dash Soft Flame Butane Pipe Lighter is a great soft flame for both cigars and pipes. It has a built-in tamper, which is tool to stuff tobacco in a pipe and scoop the ash once it’s burned. The single-action thumbwheel flame also makes it easier to use. Its small enough to fit inside your palm, pocket, or cigar case.
The soft flame versus torch flame debate really comes down to personal preference. If you can’t decide between the torch and soft flames, you can just get one with both! Our dual soft and torch flame lighters are great for when you want to smoke one night from your old man’s pipe and the other with your cigar smokin’ friends. To discover which you prefer, get a dual flame so you can experience draws from both lighters.
We’ve talked a little about hygrometers in the previous sections, but you should really learn more about them before you start shopping online. Hygrometers are used to measure the humidity of any given environment, and they work just like a thermometer. Analogue hygrometers have a piece of hair attached to a needle inside them. When humidity rises, the hair expands and moves the needle. When the environment dries, the hair retracts and moves the needle again. Digital hygrometers measure the dew point of the environment to get the reading.
When you first get your hygrometer, you’re going to have to calibrate it. There’s a very simple method, called the “salt test,” which you can do at home. First, you fill a small water or beer bottle cap with distilled water, and put about a teaspoon of salt in it.Set the cap inside your humidor, and wait a couple days for the water to evaporate. Watch your hygrometer and see if it reads 75.5% humidity. Salt water always create a 75.5% percent environment, so if your hygrometer says otherwise you’ll have to recalibrate it. Turn the knob on the side until it adjusts to 75.5%.
If you don’t feel comfortable taking your chances with a do-it-yourself calibration method, you can get a calibration kit from Boveda. They make a one-step calibration packet that you can use for any hygrometer. The Boveda calibration kit has been lab tested and scientifically proven to calibrate to a 75.5% environment every time. This thing isn’t just useful for cigars either. SOme of the finest museums in the world use it to preserve their painting and fine pieces of art. It’s reusable, so you don’t have to buy one for every new hygrometer or humidor.
Some humidors come with hygrometers built in. They may eventually break or come detached from the interior, so you need to know how to replace one. If the hole insert where your old hygrometer is the same, you can just glue the replacement inside and it should be fine. Make sure it seals tight so that you don’t have any moisture leaking or have glue drip from the crevices in between the hole and the hygrometer. You can also just place the new hygrometer inside, without mounting it to the interior. Some people prefer to add a digital hygrometer for accuracy, but keep an analogue on on the outside for aesthetics.
Public ashtrays are getting more and more rare. You really need your own ashtray for travel and home use. Trust us, your husband or wife probably won’t appreciate ash scattered all over the house, no matter how clean you think you are. CheapHumidors.com has both personal and travel ashtrays that go under the average budget. But we do have some higher quality ones for those looking for the best of the best in all their cigar accessories.
We have four different types of ashtrays, plus the limited edition Ionic Smoke Eliminating Ashtray. The Ionic looks a little like a trashcan, but it’s probably one of the most “high-tech” cigar gadgets we offer. It pulls in smoke and ash from your cigar, and using an active carbon filter transforms the smoke into clean air. Non-smoking car riders or house guest will appreciate you using this little device (though we don’t know why you’d be hanging out with non-smokers all that often). We recommend this for travel, as it’s an excellent ashtray for cars.
Crystal Ashtrays just scream “I’m more fancy than you.” They’re the most elegant of all selections, and the weight of them keeps them in place and away from the edge of your table or desk. Our Four Cigar Crystal Tobacco Leaf Ashtray is kind of artsy, too, and is a great gift for your fellow smoking friends.
Metal Ashtrays are most common for personal and home use. You want to look for one with a deep bowl and grooves to hold your cigar when you’re not. Metal ashtrays are definitely easier to clean out than a crystal one, plus they can be a little cheaper if you find the right one. This metal ashtray is great for your favorite smoking room.
Wood Ashtrays are the kind of ashtrays your granddad would use. They’re kind of “vintage,” and look make your wife happy because you’ve picked something that matches her rustic interior design (whatever that means). Ol’ granadpa would be proud to sit around the fireplace and smoke while you use this Two Cigar Two-Toned Ashtray.
Stinky Ashtrays are known for having a deep bowl, four stirrups and stainless steel design. This is the most classic type of ashtray, and we at CheapHumidors.com constantly recommend these to our customers when they ask. You can go weeks without having to empty one. Plus, they’re a symbol of class in the cigar world as far as we’re concerned.
If you don’t want to drag around your travel humidor every time you take cigars out of the house, you probably need a cigar case. The case differs from the humidor because they don’t always have humidifiers or hygrometers, and they hold a limited amount of cigars (usually just enough for a night or two). The only alternative to a cigar case is either a travel humidor or a plastic bag, which really lets people know that you’re going minimal. We care enough about cigars that we don’t want you to resort to that. Check out these five types of cigar cases he have online:
Hard Cases - Hard cases are your most basic type of cigar travelling getup. We’ve got plastic and metal hard cases to protect your stogies from the wind and weather. Most are lined with cedar to retain that nice flavor you’re looking forward to enjoying later. SOme of our larger hard cases hold between 10 and 20 cigars at a time. We even have a few that hold up to 40, but those are closer to caddy size. No matter what kind of hard case you get, you’ll be happy with its durability and functionality.
Leather Cases - These remind us of businessmen sitting around the office, making deals and smoking Churchills. Leather has such a classic look, and we love how versatile it is. We have both fingered and telescoping leather cases. For those who prefer the fingered style, we recommend this Quality Importers cured-leather case. It can carry two 8” cigars and fits well in your pocket. If you need a bigger carrying capacity, try the Five Cigar Leather Telescoping Case. Its cedar-lined and great for weekend trips.
Cigar Caddies - The concept of the cigar caddy is relatively new. Inspired by military grade travel equipment, these cases are airtight and waterproof so you can take your cigars everywhere you go. That means you can smoke when you camp, hike, fish, hunt, bike, climb, surf, whatever - you name the adventure, and the cigar caddy can accompany you on it. The best cigar caddy we carry is the 40 Cigar Travel Humidor. This thing can withstand any trek you go on, and you definitely won’t run out of sticks on the way.
Cases and Flasks - Cigars have always been paired with liquor. They’re both meant to be enjoyed as a type of extravagance, a way to enjoy the finer things in life. Now you can keep both your alcohol and your cigars with you in matching cigar case and flask. CheapHumidors.com has the perfect pairing of stainless steel cigar case and matching flask. We sell a lot of these for groomsmen’s gifts. Guys love the design, and we personally think your evenings should always be enjoyed with a nice smoke and a little scotch.
Cigar Tubes - Last but not least, we have cigar tubes. Most of these only hold one stick at a time, but they keep that one fresh and flavorful all day. We have tubes made of plastic, leather and stainless steel. More advanced cigar tubes come with a humidifier and hygrometer, like the Easy-Dor Cigar Tube Travel Humidor. This travel case comes holds seven cigars, and has a built in humidifier, hygrometer, and guillotine cutter so you have everything ready when you go on the road.
In the old western movies, guys used to cut cigars with their teeth. It seems macho, but actually it’s impractical and ruins your high quality cigar. Use a cigar cutter to get a clean break from the wrapper every time. Cutting the cigar can be tricky for those who’ve never done it. If you cut it in the wrong place, you’re not going to get as good of a smoking experience. The angle as well as how clean the cut is makes a difference in the quality of the draw. If you don’t know the terms for different parts of a cigar, you can refer to our cigar glossary for clarity.
To cut a cigar right, you hold it below the cap using your less dominant hand. You hold cutter with your dominant hand, and cut slightly above the cap, leaving ⅛ inch to spare. Its better to cut too little than to break the cap open. That could unravel the wrapper and ruin your otherwise perfect cigar. You can cut straight or at an angle. Some people like to make a V-cut, which you can get a special cutter to do. The four basic types of cigar cutters include:
Guillotine Cutters - The traditional cutter is the guillotine model. It makes a clean and crisp line every time, using either the single blade or a blade from either side. Guillotine cutters can are compact, and most of them are made to fit on your keychain. But we do have desktop guillotine cutters if you’re looking for something high-end.
Punch Cutters - Punch cutters are a little different than your traditional guillotine type. Instead of cutting off the cap, they punch a smaller hole that creates a different flavor and draw. Some people prefer the punch cutter to the guillotine because they find the smoking experience to be more pure, or more enjoyable. Our most popular model is the Gold Plated Bullet Punch Cutter from Quality Importers.
V Cutters - The V cut is somewhat exclusive to those who really know their cigars. Doing the V cut by hand is somewhat difficult to master, but our Single Blade V Cutter is popular among many smokers because it’s so easy to use. It’s the classic way to cut cigars, and should be tried at some point in your smoking experience.
Cigar Scissors - Cigar scissors make large ring gauge cigars so much easier to cut. They’re similar to the guillotine cutters, but you can open them as wide as you need and can put a bit more gusto behind the cut itself. Our Kingstar Chrome Spring Loaded Cigar Scissors are sure to become your favorite cutting utensil on the market.
This last one is a bit of a novelty, but cedar cigar trays are super cool and actually somewhat practical. You can theoretically build your own humidor with one of these trays and a cooler, hygrometer, and humidifier. The term “coolerdor” stems from geniuses who decided a cooler and cedar tray would work just as good as an actual humidor case. We’re not so sure about that, but you can use cedar trays for a bunch of cool projects. Our favorites are:
-Making a Coolerdor, or the Tupperdor (humidor made from Tupperware).
-Using as a silverware tray in the kitchen
-Making a cigar display in your favorite smoking room
-Using it as a desk organizer
-Storing loose cigars when they’re not in the humidor
-Adding an extra tray to your Display II and Display 7 Humidor.
-Keeping all your other cigar accessories neatly organized
-Use as shelving in your wineador.
-Making your own Cigar Band Shadow Box.
When you use as many cigars as we do, you end up with way too many cigar boxes lying around. Our warehouse had stacks of cardboard and wooden cigar boxes everywhere, which was getting in the way of shipping and organizing. So we thought maybe people could use them for craft projects or for extra humidor storage. So we listed them, and people loved them! Most of our cigar boxes now are sold back to customers to make all sorts of their own knick knacks and accessories. Try finding a cigar box in your local antique store. It’s probably way overpriced, and could be a fake. If you have your own project in mind, shop for our cigar boxes and get to building.
Cedar trays and cigar boxes can be used for just about anything you think of. Combine them with your cigar bands to make jewelry or decorate your humidor. Get inspiration from this blog on 5 Creative Uses for Cigar Bands. You may want to have a few extra trays just to separate cigars in your larger humidor. Either way, CheapHumidors.com has you covered for your next project.
So, if you read this entire guide, you’ve learned just about everything there is about the cigar accessory world. Hopefully you found most of it useful, and can use it as a shopping guide for when you’re browsing the website. You may not need everything right now, but having this information stored in your mind (or at least in your memory for reference). You have so much to learn, and so much to pick from!
Hopefuly the first thing on your shopping list is a high quality humidor. After that, you’ll need a good lighter and cutter. These three are essential to smoking and storing your cigars. If you have a nice humidor hopefully you already have a humidifier and hygrometer, but if not you’ll need to invest in both. A humidifier is what makes a humidor effective, and the hygrometer helps you regulate the environment that they create.
You’ll also want an ashtray for your home, and a travel humidor when you take road trips. These aren’t necessary, but can be great gifts. Well, the ashtray is kind of necessary unless you’re ok with ash getting everywhere and your entire house smelling like smoke. So yeah an ashtray is required. But they’re not too expensive, and you shouldn’t have to replace one once you get it.
Last but not least, if you’re the guy that has everything you could get a few extra cedar trays and start on your own project. Whether it’s making your own winedor or coolerdor, or making extra room in your cases, the Spanish cedar trays come in handy for all sorts of occasions. Wooden and cardboard cigar boxes can also be cool gifts or tools for your next project.
If you ever have questions about cigar accessories, cigar humidors, or anything related to the art and style of cigar smoking, call us! Or email, if you prefer the internet-chat space. Our staff is always happy to answer your questions or talk stogies if you have the time. We also have a blog that answers many cigar-related questions. We want to hear from you soon, and hope this guide was useful in helping you find the right cigar accessories.
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