Over 17.4 million of adults in the US smoke cigars regularly. However, this habit has some negative stigma associated with it. Many smokers are seen as someone wanting to show off and cigars are therefore perceived as a symbol of an over-inflated ego. If you don’t want to look like this or like a clumsy kid trying to smoke their dad’s cigars, you need to know how to smoke in style. This requires an understanding cigar smoking techniques and the use of right tools.

Train to cut your cigar properly

If you smoke cigars, you must have a cutter on you and know how to use it. There are many types of cigar cutters and each comes with a specific cutting technique.

You should try out different options so you can decide which you like best. Consider having several types of cutters to use in different situations, for example at home or on the go. Practice cutting cigars with each tool so you become proficient and not look like a complete noob when trying to smoke at some public spot.

Store your cigars in stylish cases

For all that cigars are more popular with the youth today, they are still perceived as a symbol of wealth, maturity, and high class. This means that these smokes are accessories in themselves, but you can make them to truly up your style by using fashionable cigar cases.

This accessory is as important for a smoker as your wallet and watch, so choose carefully. The case should match your personal style and color scheme of your outfit. You’ll need to have several options for different occasions. For example, have a luxury handmade piece for going to important business meetings and a practical piece with an extra protective layer for using when you hike.

Use a torch lighter and light your cigar the right way

Any cigar aficionado will tell you that the type of flame used to light up a cigar affects its flavor. So, using an unsuitable lighter makes you look like a complete novice by default. Lighting cigars using candles is only cool in movies and pretentious in life. Also, the chemicals added to candles today will affect the tobacco flavor.

The most efficient and professional method of lighting a cigar is by using a torch lighter. You can also use wooden matches, but this will require skill acquired from long practice and is best left for relaxing nights at home.

It’s very important to light the cigar correctly. Do not hold it in your mouth when lighting as you would a cigarette. Instead, hold the cigar steady over the light (not inside it) and turn it occasionally to light evenly. Do not rush and be sure to practice so you get the technique right.

Smoke without coughing

Nothing makes one look as ‘unstylish’ as coughing when they make their first pull on a cigar. You have to remember that cigars and cigarettes aren’t the same thing and have to be smoked differently. One shouldn’t inhale cigar smoke, unless you are secretly a cyborg or have been smoking cigars for every day for decades.

What you should do is to fill your mouth with the smoke ‘tasting’ it. Then slowly blow it back out and take a few breaths enjoying the leftover flavor. One thing you should never do when smoking cigars is to rush. Enjoy the process and take a drag about once every 1-2 minutes. The process of smoking a cigar can take about 30 minutes and it’s completely ok to leave it and let it go out on its own. Do not ever put it out in an ashtray as you would a cigarette.

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Ryan Sprance is the Founder and Chief Strategist of Kaihatsu Media, a Digital Marketing agency focused on developing brand awareness and sales growth through social media, optimizing digital marketing spend and developing Influencer Marketing programs. He is also the Creator & Editor-In-Chief of TheStylishMan.com, a men's lifestyle media company focused on Fashion, Fitness, Grooming, Gadgets and Guy Stuff and a Contributing Editor at Julius, a data driven Influencer Marketing platform.