After you have cut the cigar it’s time to light it up and enjoy it. The thing is though that there are many different ways to light a cigar and also a method to it.

This a complete guide on how to light a cigar.

As I have stated multiple times a cigar is not a cigarette that you can light up and start smoking.

A good cigar takes time to lit up properly but that doesn’t mean that you put it on the flame and hope for the best.

What to never light a cigar with?

Basically don’t use anything other then best butane lighter or specific cigar lighting matches should not be used to light a cigar. Especially candles, stove or cheap gas station lighters.

The reason for this is that flames from candles and others contain scents which can then be transferred to your cigar when you are lighting it.

This of course ruins the natural smell and taste of the cigar, sometimes slightly and other times completely. This is why it is recommended that you use a non smell butane lighters.

Even if you are using cigar specific matches, it is important that when you light the matchstick up you wait for a second for it to catch fire as the very first spark has that nasty smell and taste of red phosphorous and sulfur.

Once the top part of the matchstick which is made up sulfur and other chemicals (the dark brown part) has lit up properly you can then start to use it to light your cigar.

You can also use sulfur less matchsticks to avoid any risks.

So now that you are clear on what you should not use to light your cigars lets begin on how to do it.

How To Light A Cigar Step By Step

  • To start first hold the cigar with your index finger and thumb with the foot ( far side from the band ) in your hands.
  • Lighting a cigar takes time and patience and as you must have realized none of the things that we do with a cigar is as same as a cigarette then why should the lighting process be.
  • First start with holding the cigar at a 80 to 90 degree angle to the flame. Keeping a distance of 3-4 fingers between the flame and the foot of the cigar. The reason is if you put the foot in the flame it will burn too hot and ruin the cigar.
  • Remember it is important to light it properly because an uneven light produces bad smoke and ruins the experience a lot.
  • While keeping the foot near the flame start rotating your cigar so that every side and part of it starts to burn. This will help you get an even burn throughout the cigar.
  • Stay patient depending on the type of cigar you are smoking the time to burn can vary.
  • Once the foot starts burning in an orange glow evenly, take the first puff and blow it out. You can do it twice if you want, this helps it burn internally and stay lit longer.

Once you can feel the heat on the cigar that means the cigar has been lit properly and you can continue to enjoy it.

As much as some people hate it and think its an disgrace, if your cigar goes off feel free to light it up again. Some aficionado’s think that if a cigar puts out on its own then the quality of it is to be blamed and thus should not be relit. Even though it might be true but there can be many more reasons for it and to not relight seems such a waste.

Also if you are not puffing on your cigar every few minutes it will go out since there aren’t many chemicals involved in it unlike a cigarette which has many harmful chemicals keeping it lit, which is why it is okay if you want to relit a cigar.

So once that you have light it up properly, you can enjoy your cigar the way you like.


Ashes of the cigar is something you should not be concerned with as they fall of on there own and if you have a really high quality one they probably won’t fall off for a long time. The length of the ash can be determined by the quality of a cigar according to some aficionado’s.

Now that you have learnt how to light a cigar, go on try it on your cigars and enjoy the smoke and the flavor.