What’s the difference between machine-made cigars & hand-rolled cigars?

If you’re new to cigars or consider yourself somewhat of a connoisseur, there are still certain nuances that you may not realise impact the smoking experience. One of these differences is whether a cigar is machine-made or hand-rolled. In fact, one of the easiest ways to distinguish the quality of a cigar is whether it’s been machine-made or hand-rolled. However, they each have their own unique benefits depending on your lifestyle and what you expect from a cigar.

What are machine-made cigars?

Machine-made cigars are constructed by a machine, rather than being rolled by hand. As a result, they are often reliable and consistent, the perfect cigar for everyday smoking. The filler in machine-made cigars often differs from hand-rolled, with machine cigars having shorter fillers. These fillers are made from a mix of leaves, stems, and scraps of tobacco which tend to burn hotter and faster than hand-rolled cigars.

What are the benefits of machine-made cigars?

Machine-made cigars do boast some benefits over hand-rolled cigars. The wrapper of machine-made cigars must be durable enough to withstand the assembly of the machine. As a result, there should be no tears or holes in the wrapper, ensuring a reliable smoke. 

Typically, machine-made cigars are more affordable than hand-rolled. This makes them great for everyday smoking and to have to hand whenever socialising. If you’re on a budget, you can still enjoy great quality cigars that are machine-made.

What are hand-rolled cigars?

Hand-rolled cigars are, unsurprisingly, made by hand. They are made up entirely of 100% tobacco leaves, which is why they tend to be more expensive than machine-made cigars. As a result, hand-rolled cigars are often considered to be of a higher quality due to the improved scent and flavour of 100% pure tobacco. However, the price reflects this and there are still plenty of quality machine-made cigars.

What are the benefits of hand-rolled cigars?

Many cigar enthusiasts may prefer hand-rolled cigars due to the pure tobacco that can create a more flavourful smoke. These handmade cigars also tend to have longer fillers made entirely from tobacco leaves which burn slower and last longer. Hand-rolled cigars have wrappers made from trimmed tobacco leaves which retain moisture, allowing the cigar to burn slowly and evenly. This can result in a more enjoyable smoke. 

Hand-rolled cigars tend to have a more premium feel with an emphasis on 100% pure tobacco which is enjoyed by many cigar connoisseurs. 

How can I tell the difference between machine-made cigars and hand-rolled cigars?

If you want to tell if you’re looking at a machine-made or hand-rolled cigar, you can look out for the price difference, hand-rolled cigars tend to be more expensive as they use higher quality ingredients and take longer to make. Machine-made cigars are often sold in cellophane wrappers and appear outside of exclusive cigar shops. 

Should I buy hand-rolled or machine-made cigars?

The answer to this question entirely depends on your personal preferences. Here are some key things to consider when choosing your cigar:

  • Budget — hand-rolled cigars tend to cost more money, if you have a small budget or are just starting out, machine-made cigars may be a better option.
  • Usage — if you enjoy cigars regularly, it might be that hand-rolled cigars are an occasional treat whilst machine-made cigars are more for a reliable everyday smoke. 
  • Taste — many prefer the taste of machine-made cigars as it may be sweeter and not as strong as 100% tobacco hand-rolled cigars. It’s an entirely personal preference.

Both hand-rolled and machine-made cigars have their own unique benefits and can be enjoyed by both experienced and beginner cigar smokers. Some cigars may even combine the two methods, which is a nice middle-ground for those exploring their options. Hand-rolled cigars are great for those special occasions but there are some high-quality machine-made cigars that are reliable for everyday enjoyment.