How to Hold a Cigar: Balancing Elegance and Comfort
To hold a cigar properly and comfortably, grasp it between your thumb and index finger, forming an ‘O’ shape around the body of the cigar. This method provides a firm and secure yet gentle grip, allowing you to enjoy the cigar and adhere to proper etiquette.
Holding a cigar properly demonstrates respect towards the art and tradition of cigar smoking, deeply rooted in centuries of craftsmanship and sophistication. Cigars last up to an hour and you’ll want to know how to hold a cigar comfortably without tiring out your hands.
We’ll dive deeper into how to hold a cigar perfectly, detailing various techniques and methods that suit different styles and preferences.
Which fingers do you use to hold a cigar?
Every finger can be used in holding a cigar in different ways, each offering a unique grip and experience. The choice largely depends on personal preference and comfort.
Listed below are 6 different methods to hold a cigar.
- The Pen/Pool Cue method (one finger)
- The Pinch method (two fingers)
- The Triple Support method (three fingers)
- The Respectful Grip method (four or five fingers)
- The Cigarette method (two fingers)
- The Churchill method (no fingers)
1. The Pen / Pool Cue Method
The Pen/Pool Cue method is popular for balancing elegance and comfort.
This technique involves holding the cigar between the index finger and thumb, forming an O-shape around the cylindrical body, without applying too much cigar press. The Pen/Pool Cue method is advantageous when smoking large ring gauge cigars as it facilitates the ability to adjust the grip for a more secure hold on the cigar.
The elegance and simplicity of the Pen/Pool Cue method make it a go-to choice for many cigar smokers, whether they’re smoking a premium cigar or a more modest stick.
2. The Pinch Method
The Pinch method is another technique for holding cigars that offers a succinct and exact grip.
It necessitates grasping the cigar between the index finger and thumb with a delicate grip. You’ll have to adjust your grip depending on the cigar’s length, making the pinch method a less secure grip overall. One frequent mistake when using the Pinch method is applying too much pressure, which harms the wrapper.
It’s a grip that requires some practice to be comfortable and secure.
3. The Triple Support Method
The Triple Support method involves placing the index and middle fingers on the cigar band, with the thumb providing support from beneath.
This method offers a secure grip and facilitates improved control and maneuverability while smoking over the pinch grip.
The Triple Support method is versatile for cigar smokers of all levels. As you practice this method, you’ll find it provides a comfortable and reliable grip.
4. The Respectful Grip Method
The Respectful Grip method demonstrates respect for the art and skill that goes into crafting each cigar.
To properly execute the Respectful Grip method, utilize all of your fingers to support the weight of the cigar and rest it comfortably in your hand.
When it’s time to puff on the cigar, your thumb will support the cigar from below while the remainder of the fingers hold it gently yet firmly.
5. The Cigarette Method
If you’re looking for a more casual approach to holding a cigar, consider the Scissors method.
This technique involves gripping the cigar between the middle and index fingers like a cigarette. Although it’s considered a bad form of etiquette to treat a carefully crafted cigar at the same level as a cigarette, it’s a method some prefer to use when not in a social setting, especially for those who prefer a more laid-back smoking style.
Personally, the cigar method tires out my fingers as a cigar is thicker and longer than a cigarette. Instead, it’s a suitable grip for cigarillos similar in size to cigarettes.
6. The Churchill Method
The Churchill method pays tribute to the legendary British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, renowned for his admiration of cigars.
This unique method necessitates no fingers, as the cigar is held solely in the mouth. Known for his ability to hold a conversation with a cigar firmly on his lips, Churchill’s iconic method showcases the versatility and adaptability of cigar-smoking techniques.
While the Churchill method might not be the most conventional approach, it demonstrates the range of possibilities.
How should you hold a cigar in a social setting?
In social settings, it’s important to pay attention to the host’s instructions and adhere to the appropriate cigar etiquette when handling and smoking a cigar. Proper protocol in a social setting involves:
- Grasping the cigar between the thumb and forefinger of the dominant hand
- Handling it delicately
- Avoiding clamping it between the index and middle fingers
Also, respect others’ personal space and engage in polite conversation. Holding a cigar confidently and gracefully indicates sophistication and knowledge regarding cigars, which can have a beneficial effect on how others view you in a social setting.
Is It Acceptable to Hold a Cigar in Your Mouth?
Holding a cigar in your mouth is acceptable in certain circumstances, but maintain proper etiquette and avoid talking with the cigar in your mouth. A few disadvantages to holding a cigar in your mouth are listed below.
- The risk of chewing or biting on the cigar
- Excessive moisture on the cigar
- Excessive saliva or drooling
Cigars are carefully crafted products, with each part playing a significant role in the overall experience. The wrapper, in particular, is a key component that contributes to the cigar’s flavor profile. Chewing or biting can cause the wrapper to unravel, leading to an uneven burn and a less enjoyable cigar smoking experience itself.
Do you hold a cigar with your teeth or lips?
Holding a cigar with your teeth provides a firm grip and frees up your hands, but it can also damage the cigar if you bite down too hard. On the other hand, holding a cigar with your lips is generally considered safer for the cigar’s structure, but it might not provide as secure of a grip, especially for larger cigars.
In the end, the choice between using teeth or lips to hold a cigar comes down to personal comfort and preference. It’s always a good idea to experiment with both methods to see which one you prefer for the best grip and comfort, or consider using multiple fingers instead.
Should you remove the cigar band?
The decision to remove the cigar band is personal and often a subject of debate among cigar enthusiasts. Some smokers believe that removing the band is a sign of respect for the craftsmanship that goes into making each cigar. They argue that the focus should be on the cigar, not the label.
Others prefer to leave the band on as a guide for where to hold the cigar. They believe that it helps to prevent the wrapper from tearing and also allows them to remember the brand or type of cigar they are smoking.
If you decide to remove the band, it’s important to do so carefully to avoid damaging the delicate wrapper leaf. It’s best to wait until the cigar has been lit and the heat has loosened the glue before attempting to remove the band.
How should ladies hold a cigar?
Ladies, just like gentlemen, should hold a cigar with respect and elegance. The most common method involves placing the index and middle fingers on the cigar band, with the thumb supporting from underneath. This technique provides a comfortable grip and allows for an adequate draw.
How do you hold large premium Cuban cigars?
When handling large premium Cuban cigars, provide full support to the cigar with all fingers for a secure and comfortable grip.
Regardless of the cigar’s weight, the technique remains consistent, with the focus always on maintaining proper etiquette and appreciating the craftsmanship of these exceptional tobacco products.
How far should you smoke a cigar?
You should stop smoking a cigar once you’ve reached the last third of the cigar, also known as the final third, which is usually around three finger-widths left on the cigar.
At this point, the heat of the cigar intensifies, leading to harsher flavors. Feel free to continue smoking if you’re still enjoying the flavor and the cigar isn’t too hot.
You don’t necessarily need to smoke the entire cigar. It’s perfectly acceptable to put it down once you’ve had enough.
What are the necessary tools for Smoking a Cigar?
The cigar ashtray is a necessary cigar accessory for holding and smoking a cigar. It’s perfectly acceptable to rest your cigar on an ashtray specifically designed for cigars when you don’t feel like holding it in your hand.
Besides the ashtray, investing in high-quality cigar accessories enhances the overall process and enjoyment of smoking a cigar. The essential tools are listed below.
- Cigar cutters: A sharp and precise instrument is needed for cutting a cigar evenly.
- Cigar lighters: A reliable and wind-resistant lighter to properly light your cigar for even burn.
- A cigar humidor: A necessary storage unit to maintain the freshness and quality of cigars by controlling the humidity level inside.