Cigars 101

To wrap or not to wrap? (Should you keep cigars in their cello wrappers or take them off?)

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That really is the question. So here’s the 411 on cellophane wrappers: Being the 100% natural product they are, ideally, cigars should not be kept wrapped in cellophane, although some may subscribe to the belief that it makes no difference. This is true if you smoke through your cigars quickly. Some brands do come boxed naked, but most cigars are packaged in cello wrappers mainly to protect the wrappers from damage and nothing more.

The rule of thumb is, if you have a good quality humidor that keeps the environment at a relative 65-70% humidity and about 63-68 degrees temperature, your cigars can be safely stored without the cello wrappers. This allows them to “breathe” and age properly. If you often take cigars out with you, leave the cello on, but it’s always good to store a few without the cello so they can mellow out. This is also a good way to “test” whether the unwrapped cigars taste better (but give them at least a month to six weeks before smoking). You can also try putting some of your “take-out” smokes in the humidor with the cello wrapper “open” at the end which will allow some air to circulate through them.

When storing your cigars without the wrappers, be sure you carefully remove the cello so you don’t tear the wrapper leaf and gently rotate your cigars to a different part of the humidor every few weeks, too.

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Jarry Owen
8 years ago

I always unwrap mine and keep them in my humidor, seems to better the smoke and their not all dried out.

Phillip Burdine
8 years ago

I have a 50 cigar humidor with good humidity control but temperature is usually between 74-78 deg.F, same as house temperature. Should I keep the cello on them?

Sean Bearly
5 years ago

This was a useless post. May as well have just said do your own testing because Cigar Advisor doesn’t actually know the answer to this but we want to sound like an authority.

2 years ago
Reply to  Sean Bearly

There is no exact answer as everyone’s storage conditions very. Cheer up.

1 year ago
Reply to  Sean Bearly

You are a dick, Sean. Why don’t you go pester someone else’s website. Class act, certified D!

2 years ago

Thanks for the clarification. Helps this novice tremendously.

2 years ago

I have unwrapped Cohibas and kept them in their original box with the cedar paper and they age so nicely. I also have cigars I forgot about that are in cello and they have aged and gotten white plume. I totally forgot about a box I purchased online in May 2020. Now its June 2021 and they are amazing. But some cigars dont marry with even with the plastic off and thats that. But I also have two electric humidors and can store about 800 cigars total. Also I get some from NYC that are hand rolled and don’t come with cello. Over the winter I had about 5 left and they got plume very nicely. Just experiment and see what happens.

But for those who like to keep cello on then yes, If you buy a box of romeos and smoke one every two nights or night then its pointless to try to marry them since you’ll smoke them all before the magic starts.

Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for since its debut in 2008. An avid cigar smoker for over 30 years, he has worked on the marketing side of the premium cigar business as a Sr. Copywriter, blogger, and Executive Editor of Cigar Advisor. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, prior to his career in the cigar business, Gary worked in the music and video industry as a marketer and a publicist.

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