Can You Smoke a Dry Cigar

Dry cigars can be smoked, but they taste bitter and burn quickly. It’s usually not advisable to smoke a cigar dry since it can greatly reduce the smoking experience’s quality. Cigars are carefully made and kept to preserve their flavor, aroma, and overall smoking qualities. A cigar’s taste, burn, and draw can all suffer from being unduly dry.

For instance, imagine you have a cigar that is slightly dried up. You may have a question if it’s safe to smoke yet. Okay then, let’s start discussing that issue. It is good to understand how cigars can go dry occasionally and the consequences of lighting such type of stale cigars. So, let’s make it simple and ascertain if it’s a yes or a no for a dry one.

Smoke Dry Cigar

As a 20-year cigar enthusiast, I’m here today to discuss dry cigars and keeping them moist. Let’s get started answering your query now.

Can you smoke a dried-out cigar?

Technically, you can smoke a dried-out cigar, but doing so may not provide a pleasant smoking experience. A dry cigar can result in a bitter taste and too-hot smoke, which may make the experience less enjoyable than smoking a properly humidified cigar。

What happens if you smoke a dried cigar?

When dry, they do not burn evenly, and the natural oil is lost due to the evaporation. It is not pleasant to smoke dried-up cigars. They taste bitter, burn very strongly, and their smoke is very sour and bitter. Therefore, having someone smoke a dry cigar is not a pleasure you would expect an enthusiast to get. Therefore, it is necessary to learn about detecting a dry cigar.

Rather than smoke from a dry cigar, re-humidify it. The cigar will lose some of its essential oils but it will nonetheless retain cigar’s flavor. If it does not taste the exact manner in which the cigar maker wanted, it is still far more superior than discarding it.

Smoke Dry Cigar

How to tell if a cigar is dry

Any cigar lover understands the disappointment in dry cigars, which deprive you of nice and tempting fragrances and tastes. Here are some signs that your cigar might be on the dry side:

a. Cracking Wrapper

The wrapper of a dry cigar tends to be more likely to crack and become brittle. If there are clear cracks on the paper and it’s too thin, then these indicate insufficient moisture.

b. Harsh and Bitter Taste

The dry cigar will give only intense bitterness without the delicacy of taste that a perfectly humidified cigar provides. However, if your puff has some bitter aftertaste, your cigar is probably too dry.

Smoke Dry Cigar

c. Uneven Burn

Cigars are usually properly humidified, and hence, they burn evenly. Nevertheless, if there is an over-burning on one side compared to the other, this may indicate that it has become dry.

d. Spongy Texture

Surprisingly, a dry cigar is often felt to be too spongy in hand. The dry nature of the tobacco makes it hard and, in turn, loses its inherent flexibility due to insufficient moisture.

e. Crumbly Ash

A cigar generally produces solid and compact ash when it is well-humidified. If the ash of your cigar can be easily broken, it’s not well-moistened, so its burn wouldn’t be held together either.

f. Tight Draw

Sometimes, dry cigars may have a tight draw that would not allow one to enjoy an easy and uncomplicated puff. Finding it difficult to make a smoke could mean that your cigar is dry.

g. Brittle Feel

A dry cigar will be brittle. It may fall into powder when gently rolling between your fingers. However, a well-humidified cigar should be flexible and elastic.

More about How to Tell If a Cigar is Dry

Why do cigars dry out?

a. Inadequate Humidor Maintenance

Inadequate monitoring and regular maintenance can reduce the moisture content inside a humidor. Inadequate replenishing (monitoring) of a humidifier may give rise to an insufficient humidification ambiance, causing cigars to dry out.

b. Seasonal Changes

As ambient air is usually low in humidity, it affects the functioning of the humidor during the dry season.

Humidity adjustments may be necessary due to seasonal variations in environmental moisture levels. Otherwise, they can dry out cigars.

Related: Guide of Dry Cigar

Smoke Dry Cigar

c. Overcrowding in the Humidor

Excessive humidor filling might hinder free air movement and uniform humidity distribution.

For example, cigars tightly locked in humidors will not be sufficiently exposed by some parts of the humidification device, resulting in their drying off as others get humidified.

d. Humidor Placement

High temperatures may cause moisture to evaporate, causing humidity levels to decline if the humidor is not protected by placing it under sunlight or close to any heat source.

Temperature inconsistencies may also negatively affect the humidor’s capacity to maintain a stable atmosphere.

e. Faulty Seals

Humidors with broken seals are also not good because moisture will move away, causing the humidity level to decline.

Regularly checking and immediately replacing the leaky seals will ensure that the humidor remains in good order.

f. Improper use of humidifying devices

The humidification will be unequal if you do not select an exact device for the humidors or their size.

Choosing an inappropriate type of humidification can result in excessive humidity or lack of moisture retention, which can dry cigars.

How to avoid drying out your cigars

In short, there are certain things that you should try to achieve and avoid to prevent your cigars from drying out.

  • Use a tightly packed humidor. If your humidor has a rubber gasket, ensure it is not damaged.
  • Use a hygrometer to add humidity to the humidor.
  • It is also possible to use a humidifier, although you should apply it if you can get it in your house. Ensure that your humidifier does not leak water and has no broken parts.
  • The final method for avoiding cigar desiccation is to keep them in rooms where the temperature is maintained at approximately 21 Celsius.

Recommended reading: 10 Best Humidor for Beginners

Smoke Dry Cigar

5. Rehydrating a dried Cigar

Cigars can even be restored to optimal smoking conditions by rehydrating them. Cigars taste better stored at 70°F with an ambient relative humidity of around 70%. Simple measures can restore this condition.

You can also use a humidification bag. (Boveda One Year Humidor Bag review)

Bear in mind that a dried cigar is quite fragile, and hence, it should be slowly rehydrated.

a. How to Re-Hydrate a Dried Out Cigar

  • Put dry cigars in a sealed/tight container.
  • Place your cigars outside the humidor’s doors and place them in a tight-sealable plastic container or a secure zip plastic bag.

b. Add Humidification

Put a humidifier in a zip bag or plastic box containing cigars. First, use a humidification bag at 62% humidity. Ideally, allow the cigars to sit for at least two or three weeks. Then, use another bag that contains about 65% humidity for another couple of weeks. When that time is over, go up to a humidity bag at about 69% humidity. Exceeding 70% humidity is harmful, so beware!

Note: You may also put the cigars straight into the humidification bag, but take care to follow the guideline of gradually raising the humidity levels.

Smoke Dry Cigar

c. Return Cigars to a Humidor

To restore moisture in your cigars, you can season the humidor. First, use distilled water to clean the inside without drenching the humidor. Once again, shut it down a day or two later.

Next, add more distilled water or a propylene glycol solution to the humidor’s reservoir and monitor the relative humidity until it reaches 70%. Finally, put your dried-out cigars back in the humidor after allowing them to adapt gradually.

6. How to Dry Cigars?

  • Choose a Suitable Container: Use a cedar box or another dry, well-ventilated container. Cedar is preferred because it helps maintain a neutral environment that does not impart unwanted flavors to the cigar.
  • Monitor Humidity: Place a hygrometer inside the container to monitor the humidity level. For optimal results, aim for a humidity level of 60-65%. This level is slightly lower than typical humidor conditions but ideal for stabilizing a cigar’s moisture content before smoking.
  • Time Duration: Dry boxing usually takes between 1-3 days. Keep the cigars in the dry container and check them periodically. Avoid over-drying, which can lead to burn issues such as an uneven burn line or tunneling.

How long does it take to humidify a dry cigar

Humidifying a dry cigar is a delicate process that typically takes from a few weeks to a month, depending on the initial dryness of the cigar and the method used. The key to successful rehumidification is to increase the humidity to avoid damaging the cigar gradually;

Wrapping Up

It is advisable not to smoke a dry cigar. Once it gets dry, a cigar will lose some of its flavors, which may also affect its burn and enjoyment. A dry cigar will taste harshly, and the tobacco will not be burnt evenly, rendering a poor smoking experience. It will be like tasting a delicious coffee, but with old coffee beans, it won’t feel as fulfilling.

Cigars should also be stored safely in a humidor for humidity consistency to offer the best cigar experience. You might not be satisfied if the cigar has already dried up, even when trying to smoke. However, spending enough time to store and maintain these cigars correctly will improve their taste and make them much more enjoyable to smoke. Lastly, do not forget that a properly maintained cigar makes it taste better.


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Complete Guide of Dry Cigar


Dry cigars can also be preserved, and the cigar can be moistened before smoking, but it will not taste as good as the original. The best way to store it is in a Boveda bag or humidor.

Strong and Mild Cigars. Dry-cured cigars are the type that can be, and in fact, are meant to be kept dry. These cigars are usually made from 100 percent tobacco and often contain Indonesian, Sumatra, or Brazilian leaves. Dry-cured cigars are crafted to be stored without the need for a humidor and can withstand much lower humidity levels than their traditional counterparts

When a cigar becomes too dry, several negative consequences affect its quality and smoking experience: Fragility, Loss of Flavor, Burning Issues, and Physical Damage.

Effects that compromise their quality, flavor, and structural integrity: Dryness and Cracking, Loss of Essential Oils, Poor Burn Quality, Increased Risk of Mold and Pests, and Respiratory Health Risks.

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