Cigar Cutting Infographic

How to Cut a Cigar

Before lighting your cigar you must cut the closed capped end off the cigar before you can smoke it. The closed capped end of a cigar is where you put your mouth and you must cut it to allow proper air to flow through the cigar, otherwise it simply won’t draw. Knowing how to cut a cigar is important because a bad cut can damage a cigar and ruin how it smokes and tastes.

Cigar Cutting 101

You only want to remove the outer layer of wrapper. It is always better to cut too little than too much. Cut before the cap leaving 3-4 mm or 1/8th inch.
Hold the cigar firmly between your index finger and thumb of your less dominant hand, below the cap.
Hold the cutter with your dominant hand.
Cut with a single quick, strong movement to ensure a clean cut.
Never bite to cut a cigar. Biting is an imprecise way to cut, and a bad cut will cause the wrapper to unravel, and ruin your cigar-smoking experience.
Basic types of cuts: the straight cut, the V-cut, and the hole punch. The type of cut to make is based on personal preference and the size or the shape of the cigar.

How to Use the Guillotine

Lay the cutter on a flat surface.
Place the cigar flush against the surface, through the cutter. Close the cutter enough to grip the cigar and pick it up.
Cut the cigar with one swift, strong movement to make a clean, smooth cut.
Tap the recently cut end to remove tobacco that may be sticking out.

How to Use Cigar Scissors

Dampen the cap a little by putting it your mouth.
Score around the cigar using the blades.
As you prepare to cut, press the scissors against the cigar.
Do a quick, direct cut.

How to Use the V-Cutter

Hold the cigar in one hand, the cutter in the other with the ends pulled open
Press the cap of the cigar toward the cutter, and squeeze the cutter closed in one swift motion. This will leave a V-shaped cut in the cigar.

How to Use the Punch Cutter

Remove the cap of the punch cutter.
Twist the cutter back and forth while digging it against the cap.
Press the back of the cutter to push the cap out of the cutter.

Cutting Figurados

For figurados such as torpedos, perfectos, etc., you may have to cut significantly more in order to open the head enough for a sufficient draw. Typically, people smoke cigars with tapered heads because they like how the narrowing ring concentrates the smoke against the palate, so most figurado smokers want less of the cigar’s surface opened by the cut.


Start by cutting little by little, then do a cold/dry draw. If you decide you want a more open draw, you can just recut.
You cannot use punch cutter on figurados because of its tapered end. Get a V-cutter, or a guillotine for better result.
If you have a dull cutter, try cutting your cigar while it is still in its cellophane sleeve to get a much cleaner cut, with a dull cutter.,,,,,,,,,,

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