A good cigar humidor can keep your cigars fresh and help retain flavor, but a cigar humidifier preserves your cigars even longer. Even if you have a humidor with a humidifier in it already, you may benefit from a separate cigar humidifier.
In our review, we discuss the importance of cigar humidifiers and some of the best cigar humidifiers on the market this year. We also wrap our article up with our top pick that we think every cigar lover needs.
What is a Cigar Humidifier?
As someone who appreciates a high-quality cigar, you probably know how important it is to take care of it until you’re ready to enjoy it. If you’ve ever smoked a cigar that’s too dry, you know that moisture is essential for flavor, but too much humidity can cause mold.
Cigars are also susceptible to cigar beetles, so it’s essential to keep your cigar collection in a storage box that’s airtight but has the perfect balance of airflow and moisture. A cigar humidifier keeps your cigars from drying out and plays an essential role in humidors.
There are different types of cigar humidifiers that are all designed to help create humidity for your cigars, but they range in price, materials, and ease of use. Let’s take a quick look at some of the most common types.
Crystal Gel Humidifiers
A crystal gel humidifier contains polymer crystals that can absorb moisture up to hundreds of times its weight. As the humidifier absorbs water, the gel expands and then releases moisture into the humidor.
Gel humidifiers are effective for about four weeks and then need “recharging” with water. They typically last for one to two years. Be careful that you don’t overwater to avoid mold.
Silica beads are used in many things to absorb moisture. Silica beads are similar to crystal gel, are durable, and need recharging every few weeks. The one plus is that silica beads last for years and work well in high humidity. They don’t do a good job of releasing moisture when the environment is dry.
Floral foam is a popular material in cigar humidifiers because it’s affordable and only needs replacing a few times a year. Since the floral foam is very porous, it needs refilling every couple of weeks. If you aren’t good at maintaining the humidity in your humidor, you might want to look humidifier material that keeps moisture longer.
Humidipaks are a convenient way to monitor and improve the humidity without adding more water. Humidipaks absorb and release moisture as needed and can last up to a year. One humidipak works for about 25 cigars, so if you have a more extensive collection, you’ll need more than one.
Electronic humidifiers are the most expensive types of cigar humidifiers, but they have built-in hygrometers and thermometers. Electronic humidifiers are also more accurate and help to take out the guesswork or frustration of too much or too little moisture. One downside is that they can take up space in your humidor, which can limit the number of cigars you can store.
Our Cigar Humidifier Top Rated List
For serious control of humidity, this electronic humidifier can handle up to 300 cigars. It's equipped with humidity check, low-level water alert and an easy to read LCD which displays RH.
The Boveda humidipaks last for up to 3 months and are self maintained (no need to activate). They go rigid as an indication for replacement and are available in 32, 49, 62, 69, 75, 84, and 95 RH.
Replicating a cigar the DryMistat tubes fit nicely in any size humidor. Simply recharge with distilled water every 2 to 12 weeks. With a leak-proof design, there's no need to worry about spoiling your cigars.
Contenting a stainless-steel grate, this small disk can easily be install in your humidor with double-sided tape. It contains an internal polymer sponge to help maintain humidity.
Issues With Cigars Exposed At High Humidity
The optimum humidity for a cigar ranges between 70 – 75% and anything above that figure can create some mold issues as this is the point at which cigars start to absorb moisture. This mold should not be mistake for plume (though I understand there’s a big debate regarding this subject matter) and it looks something like this.
There is much debate as to whether you should toss the cigar or simply clean off the mold, but one thing’s for sure, if you notice mold growing in the folds of the leaves (inside the cigar), then it is probably time to throw it out.
Cigars can still be damp without any signs of mold while still poses other issues. For instance, the tobacco leaves start to swell up which makes it difficult to draw the smoke. Secondly, the excess damp in the leaves alters the burn rate where different parts of the cigar will burn at different rates, a phenomena otherwise know as ‘tunneling’.
Issues With Cigars Exposed At Low Humidity
Storing your cigars in a humidor with a humidity less than 70% can pose a risk of drying out the tobacco. Dry, stale tobacco leaf tends to burn too hot and can leave a bitter taste, which many cigar smokers will agree is far from a pleasant taste (this happens because all the essential oils have evaporated).
If you find your cigars looking like this, then it might be time to check your humidifier. It’s either set too low or it might be malfunctioning, in which case you’ve come to the right place to source a new one.
What’s the Difference Between a Humidor and Humidifier?
Many cigar lovers assume that their humidor works well enough to maintain and control the humidity, but some have better humidifiers than others. Depending on the type of humidor you have, the number of cigars you are storing, and other factors like weather, you might want to purchase a separate humidifier that’s easy to control.
If you don’t own a cigar humidor, it’s always a good idea to know what types of humidifiers are available and how they work. While many people use humidor and humidifier interchangeably, they aren’t quite the same.
Ready to take a closer look at some of our top picks for cigar humidifiers?
There are plenty of different styles of crystal gel humidifiers on the market, but Drymistat Humidor Humidifier Tubes make our list because they are approximately the size of a cigar, so they fit nicely in any size or style of humidor.
The DryMistat humidifiers are available as a two-pack and help to maintain 70 percent humidity at all times, which is the ideal humidity for cigars. Since the tubes already contain propylene glycol all you need to do is recharge the tubes with distilled water every 2 to 12 weeks.
The cap on the tube fits snug, and the humidifier has a leak-proof design, so you don’t need to worry about excess water ruining your favorite cigars.
- Space-saving design
- Easy to use
- Just add water
- A two-way humidifier
- One stick works for about 25 cigar
- Tube may leak
- Inconsistent humidity range
- May need to recharge frequently
If you’re interested in trying out humidipaks, the Boveda 2-Way Humidity Control packs are some of the highest-rated and best-loved among cigar aficionados. These humidipaks are easy to use and ready to go as soon as you take them out of the packaging. There’s no need to activate or even maintain them.
The Boveda packs last about three months, and once the pack gets hard and rigid, it’s an indication that it’s time for a replacement. Even though 72 percent relative humidity (RH) is in the ideal range for cigars, Boveda packs are also available in 32, 49, 62, 69, 75, 84, and 95 RH.
- No need to recharge or maintain
- Various RH levels
- Doesn’t take up too much space
- Perfect for traveling
- May need to use multiple packs to achieve optimal humidity
- Some users received damaged packs
- Cannot recharg
Electronic humidifiers are typically the most expensive types, but they are a worthy investment if you have a larger cigar collection. Especially if you’re serious about controlling humidity. The Cigar Oasis Excel 3.0 Electronic Humidifier is ideal for one to four cubic feet and between 75 to 300 cigars.
The electronic humidifier fits in a variety of humidors from wooden desktop versions to cigar coolers. It has all the features you need to keep your humidity in check, such as low-level water alert and an easy to read LCD which displays RH and temperature. The cartridge comes filled with distilled water and lasts up to four months. The electronic humidifier is a great “set it and forget it” option.
- Sensor fan to circulate air and reduce mold issues
- Easy to use
- Built-in thermometer and hygrometer
- Comes with distilled water cartridge
- Ideal for larger collection
- Takes up more space than other humidifiers
- Needs monitoring
- Inconsistent humidity
If you’re interested in a budget-friendly cigar humidifier that’s easy to use, install, and is an attractive addition to your humidor, the FUNEW Cigar Humidor Humidifier is an excellent option.
The plastic humidifier with a stainless-steel grate is a small disk that you can easily install in your humidor with double-sided tape. The inside of the disk has a polymer sponge that helps maintain humidity. Depending on how frequently you use your humidor, you may need to recharge with distilled water more regularly, but the humidifier lasts about two to three months.
- Attractive design
- Easy to recharge
- Lasts a few months
- Ideal for 75 to 200 cigars
- No need to drill holes in a humidor to instal
- May need recharging more frequently
- Double-stick tape may not hold
- Plastic housing can break overtime
Our Favorite Pick for Best Cigar Humidifier
Our top choice for the best cigar humidifier is the Cigar Oasis Excel 3.0 Electronic Humidifier. It has all the features you need to maintain your humidity with minimal maintenance. We like the sensor fan and the easy-to-read LCD with low-level water alert.
If an electronic humidifier is out of your price range or you simply want something smaller, our other top pick for best cigar humidifier is the Drymistat Humidor Humidifier Tubes. They’re ideal for a small cigar humidor, don’t take up too much space, and are easy to use and maintain.