Rehydrating Cigars: How to Redydate a Cigar

Encountering a dry cigar is an undeniably disappointing experience for cigar enthusiasts. However, worry not, as there are many effective methods to rehydrate these beloved tobacco delights. With our simple yet crucial steps, cigar aficionados can revitalise their dried-out stogies and restore them to their former glory. Whether employing a rehydration pack, using a humidor, or implementing a DIY rehydration method, salvaging a dry cigar is within reach, preserving the rich flavours and enjoyment that come with a perfectly conditioned smoke. Find out more below. 

Why do cigars go dry?

Wondering why your cigars keep going dry? Cigars are made of delicate tobacco leaves packed with flavours and oils. These precious tobacco treasures thrive in specific humidity levels, typically between 65% to 75%. When exposed to low-humidity environments, like dry rooms or direct sunlight, cigars lose their essential oils and moisture. This leads to a lacklustre and harsh smoking experience, robbing enthusiasts of their desired flavours and aroma. Fluctuating temperatures can also exacerbate the issue, accelerating the drying process. 

By keeping cigars in a controlled environment, enthusiasts can ensure they remain fresh, allowing them to savour the true essence of their favourite smokes with each indulgent puff.

How to tell if a cigar has gone dry?

Identifying a dry cigar is crucial for a satisfying smoking experience. To tell if a cigar has gone dry, look for certain signs. First, gently squeeze the cigar between your fingers. If it feels brittle and crumbles easily, it’s likely dried out. Next, inspect the wrapper; a dry cigar often shows cracks or splits. Check the aroma as well – a stale or musty smell indicates a loss of essential oils. Finally, when you light it up, a dry cigar will burn quickly and unevenly, delivering a harsh, bitter taste. If any of these indicators are present, it’s time to rehydrate or replace the cigar for a better smoke.

What happens when you smoke a dry cigar?

When you smoke a dry cigar, the experience can be disappointing and unpleasant. The lack of moisture in the tobacco leaves leads to several negative effects. Firstly, the cigar burns much faster and unevenly, making it difficult to enjoy a smooth and leisurely smoke. The harsh, bitter taste overpowers any delicate flavours that the cigar might have had when properly humidified. Additionally, a dry cigar produces excessive heat, resulting in an acrid and irritating smoke. Overall, smoking a dry cigar diminishes the enjoyment and robs you of the rich, nuanced experience that a well-hydrated cigar can provide.

Can you fix a dry cigar?

Yes, a dry cigar can be fixed to some extent through rehydration techniques. In fact, placing the cigar in a properly maintained humidor with 70% humidity or using a rehydration pack can gradually restore its moisture and improve its smoking qualities. However, the extent of rehydration success depends on the severity of dryness and any damage the cigar may have sustained. Severe cracking or splitting of the wrapper may be challenging to repair fully. 

To prevent dryness in the future, it’s crucial to store cigars correctly and maintain appropriate humidity levels, ensuring a delightful smoking experience with well-preserved flavours and aroma.

When can’t you rehydrate a cigar?

Rehydrating a cigar becomes challenging or even impossible when it has suffered extensive dryness and damage. If the cigar’s wrapper is severely cracked, split or flaking, attempts at rehydration may not fully restore its original texture and flavour. 

Additionally, when a cigar has become excessively dry, it can lose its essential oils and complexities, leading to a harsh and disappointing smoking experience even after rehydration efforts. In these cases, it’s best to acknowledge the irreversible damage and focus on proper cigar storage in the future to prevent dryness and maintain the integrity of these tobacco treasures.

How to rehydrate a cigar

Rehydrating a dry cigar requires a delicate and patient approach to avoid damaging the tobacco further. Here are several methods to restore dry cigars:

1) Quarter Turn: Place the open cigar box in a humid cellar or damp location, rotating the cigars over a week (or longer for extremely dry cigars). Then place the cigars in a humidor at 70% humidity, and every 2-3 days, give them a quarter turn rotation until all cigars have been fully rotated at least twice. 

2) Ziplock Bag: Create small holes in a large ziplock bag and place the open cigar box inside. Seal the bag and then insert it into a larger ziplock bag. Next, add a slightly damp sponge to the second bag and seal it. Remember to rotate the cigars from top to bottom and side to side every few days. 

3) Use a Humidor: Place the dry cigar in a properly maintained humidor with a humidity level of around 70%. This gradual rehydration process can take several weeks, depending on the cigar’s dryness level.

4) Rehydration Pack: Consider using a specialised rehydration pack for a quicker fix. These packs contain moisture-retaining agents and help rehydrate the cigar over a few days. 

5) Distilled Water: If you don’t have a humidor or rehydration pack, try using distilled water. Gently dampen the cap or foot of the cigar with a clean, soft cloth or a small brush. However, avoid direct contact with the wrapper to prevent damage.

Remember, extreme dryness may irreparably damage the cigar, so it’s crucial to store cigars correctly to prevent dryness in the first place. 

How long does it take to rehydrate a cigar?

The time it takes to rehydrate a cigar depends on its initial dryness level and the rehydration method used. Generally, it can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. For mildly dry cigars, placing them in a humidor with 70% humidity might take around a week. However, extremely dry cigars may require several weeks of rehydration to achieve satisfactory results. It’s essential to be patient and avoid rushing the process to ensure even moisture distribution and the preservation of the cigar’s flavours and overall smoking quality.

At Cigar Club, we understand the disappointment of a dehydrated cigar and hope you never have to deal with it. However, with our tips and tricks, you know what to do and avoid if the situation ever occurs.