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Cigar 101

Cigar Cases: Leather vs. Carbon vs. Metal vs. Wood

Shane K. K's picture

Shane K.

Cigar cases make excellent gift items because they’re a luxury many aficionados overlook. Cigar cases serve a critical function if you plan to travel anywhere with your cigars, even just to a buddy’s house. It’s too easy to crack a cigar’s wrapper leaf when you slide it in your pocket. Leaving the cellophane on your cigars is a good idea, but it does less to protect your cigars than a case will. Most cigar cases are made of leather, but you’ll find a variety of other materials today like wood, metal, crushproof plastic, and carbon fiber. Here are some general pros and cons when you’re deciding whether to get a cigar case made of leather vs. wood, carbon fiber vs. metal, or wood vs. plastic.

Leather Cigar Cases

Leather cigar cases are ideal for taking two or three cigars with you when you’re going out to dinner or to your local cigar lounge. Classy and luxurious cases like the Ashton Tan Calfskin Leather series are crafted from high-end materials with color-coordinated stitching. The collection accommodates a wide range of cigar sizes and starts around $59. More affordable leather cases are available from Rochester ($22.50-$24.95) and Savoy ($34.99-$39.99). Visol also produces leather cases with exotic patterns like the Granada ($22.95), which is outfitted with a cigar cutter in a convenient sleeve on the front.

Wood Cigar Case

Wooden cigar cases are often finished in leather or an exotic skin, like the Visol Arapaho Cigar Case ($24.95). Cedar is the most common type of wood used to make cigar cases because it is ideal for improving a cigar’s taste and it reacts favorably with moisture. Most humidors and cigar boxes are made of cedar, for example. Cedar offers a nice advantage because it’s firm and fragrant.

Metal Cigar Case

Metal cigar cases can be found in simple inexpensive materials like chrome as well as ultra-pricey precious alloys like silver, gold, or palladium. The Visol Tristan Single Cigar Case ($19.95) won’t break the bank by any stretch, but it’s finished in a classy black leather with red stitching. Metal cases are firm, but also unforgiving. Don’t try to force a cigar that’s just a hair too thick into a metal tube, or you’ll almost certainly tear its wrapper leaf.

Carbon Fiber Cigar Cases

The craze for carbon fiber over the past two decades has fashioned its way into every kind of accessory you can image, including cigar cases. I don’t know that most connoisseurs would ever need the “indestructible” benefit of carbon fiber to protect their cigars, but it’s an ultra-lightweight and sporty material that commands attention, so why not? You’ll also find all kinds of cigar cases and accessories coated in what looks like carbon fiber but is simply a fabricated pattern. The real stuff gets pretty expensive.

Travel Humidors

If you’re going camping or you simply want to bring more than a few cigars to share with your friends, a travel humidor is better than a traditional breast-pocket cigar case. Hands down, Xikar’s Travel Humidor is the most popular option. It’s available in a 5-count, 10-count, or 20-cigar capacity. Each is made of crushproof ABS-molded plastic and is fashioned with a stainless steel back-hinge and heavy-duty latches. On the inside, your cigars are cradled by a high-density urethane foam while a magnetic humidifier will keep your cigars humidified for an extended period of time. You can squeeze a travel humidor into a suitcase or a backpack without the worry of crushing your cigars.

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