Written by Puff Staff

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

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One view is that you should remove the cellophane when storing your cigar because it essentially gives the cigar more room to breathe.  By allowing the cigar to breathe, it will be able to age better and become more flavorful over time.  That seems to make sense, but it’s not the definitive view on the subject, as another school of thought says the complete opposite.  In fact, the opposing view says that you can leave the cigar in cellophane and it will have virtually no effect on the aging process, so why remove it?

There’s another view on the whole cellophane subject that agrees with the pro-cellophane crowd, but it’s not for the simple reasoning that the cigar will still be able to age just fine when wrapped.  This view says that you should keep the cellophane on as protection against those pesky little cigar enemies known as beetles.  We are dealing with tobacco leaves here, and Mother Nature loves her creatures, even ones as annoying as beetles.  And tobacco beetles love to hatch in warm temperatures, especially ones that top 80 degrees F. 

So, if you live in a particularly steamy climate, there is a chance that beetles could make an appearance in your beloved cigars.  But the beetles won’t stay put.  Nope.  They could get the itch to infiltrate the other cigars in your humidor to have a virtual “party” at your expense.  This mini-disaster can be fixed through different techniques afterwards, but keeping the cellophane on will add an extra barrier for these beetles to overcome, and you may really want to do it if you have multiple brands of cigars sharing one humidor.  Keep that in mind when deciding whether or not you want to keep the cellophane on.

There’s one more factor to consider in the cellophane debate, although it’s rather trivial: appearance.  Cigars, especially ones with ornate bands, are fun to look at as they are somewhat of a status symbol.  A cigar without cellophane obviously looks better, but you’ll have to decide just how important that is to you.

Should I keep the cigar band on or take it off when smoking?

Now that we have the cellophane debate out of the way, it’s time to talk about what to do with the band(s) once the cigar is lit.  First, let’s quickly discuss where bands originated – from a man named Gustave Bock.

Around the mid-1800s, Bock discovered that his Havana-made cigars were being copied by others.  At that time, cigars were sold bare with no cellophane or bands.  So, to distinguish his real-deal cigars from the counterfeits, Bock decided to place bands around his stogies so that everyone would know what they were getting their hands on.

Bock’s story seems like a viable one, but it’s not the only one in the history of cigar bands.  Have you ever seen pictures or movies where the rich had on white gloves?  Well it was thought that cigars would stain the gloves, and some believe that bands were created to keep those gloves nice and clean.


0 # RE: Cigar Cellophane and Bands: On or Off?Jim Chmelicek 2013-09-27 08:15
I always store my cigars with cellophane since I take cigars with me when I go out and I want that protection. Unless cigars will be stored for several months the cellophane makes little difference with ageing. I never remove cigar bands for fear of damaging the wrapper.

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+1 # RE: Cigar Cellophane and Bands: On or Off?Tom T 2013-09-28 09:49
I remove cellophane so shipped cigars can breathe and absorb moisture better. To each his own

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-1 # RE: Cigar Cellophane and Bands: On or Off?Off 2013-10-13 18:51
Off and off. Cellophane is there to protect the cigar during shipping/travel. That's it.

Leaving the band on past the first few minutes of smoking (to loosen up the glue if need be) is just showing off.

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0 # Cellophane, what to doC. H. 2013-11-07 10:04
I generally leave the cellophane on for the first week or so, but i cut the tips off so the cigar can breath easier. i generally get my cigars from cigarbid and i never know when they arrive what there humidity level is. By leaving the cellophane on, if they happen to be dry, it reduces the risk of them splitting when put inside my 72% humidity humidor.

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0 # Don't Suffocate MeJR Williams 2013-11-07 10:47
Ditto's to Tom T and Off. Your Humi is to keep your sticks at the right moisture level and to let them breathe. Hard to do that if they are all wrapped up in cellophane.

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0 # Not reallyJoshua Hurst 2014-05-26 23:19
Though you may not know cellophane is a porous materiel so moisture gets in AND OUT just fine

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0 # OFFJoshua Hurst 2014-05-26 23:24
I often take my bands off not because of showing off cause I don't care what others think but because they get in the way toward the end. Why put off for later what I could do now also I like to collect bands along with boxes and tubes to each his :P own.

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