How to Properly Light a Cigar

December 21, 2011 2 Comments Cigaranado

cigarAfter you have found the right cigar, the next step is going to be to light your cigar, so that you can sit back and enjoy it. However, in order to preserve the integrity of your cigar, you cannot light it with just any old butane lighter or matches. Treat your cigar like you would your sweetheart. Kiss it gently, and it will kiss you back. I’ve got a few pointers that can help make the most of the lighting process of your cigar.

First and foremost, you will need to take time your time lighting your cigar. One of the fastest ways to compromise the integrity of your cigar is through aggressive lighting. When you first apply the flame to your cigar, you should draw slow, gentle puffs of air. If you draw on your cigar too aggressively, then it can force too much air through the cigar, which will make the cigar run hot, compromising its integrity. In order to light the cigar evenly, you should also rotate it as you draw in air.

One of the biggest debates in the world of cigars is whether an individual should use matches or a lighter to light their cigar. Because you do not want to taste chemicals in your cigar, you should not use either certain types of lighters or paper matches to light your cigar. For example, most cheap matches have been doused in sulfur, which can infuse an unpleasant taste into your cigars when the flame is applied to your stogie.

If you prefer to use matches to light your cigars, look for matches that are constructed from wood, particularly cedar. Wooden matches are not treated with sulfur. However, before applying the match to your cigar, you should allow it to burn for a few seconds in order to release any chemicals into the air that might be present. It is important to be 100% sure that the flame that is applied to your cigar is fed from the wood of the matchstick, rather than the head. When it comes to lighters, Zippos, and other similar lighters, are quite popular. Fluid filled lighters must be used with care when it comes to lighting cigars. In short, lighter fluid smells bad. If it comes into contact with your cigar, it can potentially affect its overall taste. The flame should be kept a slight distance away from the cigar in order to keep chemicals from coming in contact with your cigar.

Most cigar experts are going to recommend that you employ the use of a butane lighter to light your cigar. Butane lighters are virtually considered risk free to use when it comes to lighting a cigar. Butane is a clear fluid that is colorless, odorless, and burns quite cleanly, without any additional flavors being transferred to your cigar. The only potential downside to using a butane lighter is that it is so easy, you must take care not to become too aggressive when lighting your cigar.

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This post was posted in Professional Cigar Tips


  1. Dick Tremblay
    Posted February 4, 2012 at 3:17 am | Permalink

    I’ve been smoking cigars for 44 years and only in the past couple years have I found the enjoyment of hand made quality cigars. Now I have two humidors, one to age them and condition them and the other I have my conditioned smokes that I take with me when I want to enjoy one or two. Your articles are interesting and on the mark. I would be interested in anything else you may post so feel free to send me periodic e mails on the subject. Thanks.

    • Cigaranado
      Posted February 4, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

      Hello Dick, thanks for checking out our Cigar Blog :-) we are glad to have you here and appreciate your compliments. Let us know if there is anything you would like to see or hear about on our blog – we love feedback and input. Have a great weekend!