How to Cut a Cigar Properly (All Methods & Tips)

Cutting your cigar correctly is absolutely essential to your smoking ritual. Novice cigar aficionados can make many potential errors when attempting to cut their cigars, even though it may appear straightforward! To ensure a great experience with your next stogie, take the time to read this article and learn tips on cutting your cigar properly. Then go and pick the best cigar cutter that suits your needs. With the right guidance, you will be able to enjoy your next smoke like an expert!

Types of Cigar Cutters and Cigar Cuts

In cigar culture, there’s a significant variety of cigars available, offering different types of cuts to suit any preference. There are several methods for cutting, such as a guillotine, punch, or V-cut, and more which can be used depending on the type of vitola you have chosen. Each cut has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to select the right one for your needs.

types of cigar cuts

Guillotine Cutter

The most widely used type of cutter is the double-bladed one, which differs from a real guillotine in that it has two blades instead of just one. Investing in a stainless-steel model will provide years of use for only about $10, making it an excellent value.

cigar guillotine cutter

Punch Cutter

This device resembles a bullet and does exactly what it claims: puncturing the end of a cigar instead of cutting off a piece. Supporters of this method argue that it is less damaging to the cigar, potentially making it more intense in flavor. These punches are less widespread but are convenient since they can easily be attached to a keychain and won’t risk slicing your finger.

cigar punch cutter

V Cutter

A V-cutter is designed to make a precise, V-shaped cut on the cap end of your stogie. Unlike traditional cutters, which take off a specific amount of the cap, this type of cutter creates an opening for you to draw through without removing any material from the cigar itself. The result is a cleaner and smoother smoke that allows you to enjoy the full flavor of your favorite cigar.

Using a v-cutter can help to minimize the risk of loose cigar filler entering your mouth due to its precise and small cuts. However, be aware that cutting too deeply into the cigar with this tool may produce an overly harsh draw and rapid burning. Therefore, it is important to ensure that you do not cut any deeper than necessary when using a V-cutter.

cigar V cutter

Cigar Scissors

When it comes to cutting a cigar, one cannot ignore the importance of having the right tool. Regular scissors are not suitable for this task; specialized cigar scissors are designed specifically to provide an optimal cut on a cigar. These tools work similarly to regular scissors but have been crafted to deliver the best results when cutting cigars.

The excellence of your cigar scissors is critical when buying them. Blades made from stainless steel which are kept sharp will easily cut through any type of cigar wrapper. If the blades are low-grade or not properly maintained, there is a greater chance that you will tear the wrapper of your cigar.

cigar scissors cutter

Cigar Knife

Cigar knives are a comparatively new way of cutting cigars. They were invented by the French company LES FINES LAMES in 2015. They make a straight cut like the guillotine or scissors. Designed to be opened and operated with one hand, cigar knives are incredibly well made and amazingly sharp. So, be careful when operating with a cigar knife. You can use it equally comfortable whether you are right or left handed.

cigar knife cutter

Non-Recommended Ways

Here is a list of all the non-recommended ways to cut your cigar:

  • Teeth;
  • Fingernails;
  • Matchstick;
  • Kitchen knife.

How to Make the Perfect Cut

Here are 4 simple steps to make the perfect cigar cut:

1. Locate the Cap of the Cigar

The cap of the cigar is the end piece of tobacco that has been lightly glued to maintain the wrapper’s integrity while it is stored. It should be the only part that is cut off, as cutting too far past the cap can damage the wrapper and cause tears or unraveling.

The cap is usually visible as a slightly rounded piece of leaf. When cutting, it’s best to err on the side of caution and make a shallow cut; this will help prevent any unwanted unraveling. Leaving some of the cap and glue can also be beneficial in avoiding such an issue.

2. Place the Blades on the Cap End of the Cigar

Once you have acquired a top-notch cutter, make sure to keep it a few millimeters away from the cap of your cigar. Most cigar aficionados moisten the head before cutting in order to guarantee that the end is adequately damp. This is important for two reasons: Firstly, it ensures an even cut and secondly, it prevents the wrapper from coming undone when smoking. Some smokers do this to get the full flavor out of their cigar before lighting, while others simply enjoy avoiding any potential unraveling.

3. Make a Quick Cut

When cutting a cigar, it is important to be quick and sure. If you are unfamiliar with the process, this may seem confusing; however, there is an easy explanation for this. A shaky cut or attempting to reposition the blade in the middle of the cut can easily result in tearing the wrapper.

While cutting your cigar, damaging it is not a major issue, but it can add inconvenience to what should be a calming experience. The most effective way to stop this from happening is to practice and make sure you firmly and swiftly use the cutter when cutting the stogie.

4. Enjoy!

Now you are ready to take a cold draw and feel the flavor of your cigar before lighting it. Of course, now you should light the stick, relax and enjoy the experience of smoking a cigar.

man cutting a cigar

Additional Tips for How to Cut a Cigar

Here are 3 additional tips for cutting your cigar properly:

Cut Fast

You can take plenty of time to assess which kind of cut to try first. However, when it comes down to cutting the cigar’s cap end, you need to be fast. So, if you end up taking too long to make a cut, or you do it in parts, you’ll end up damaging the quality of your cigar.

Reentry into the cigar after a partial cut guarantees a tear. Therefore, make sure that the blades are sharp and you don’t have to make several cuts but just one. Nevertheless, a relaxing activity should never turn into a hassle. So, try to get comfortable and take as much time as you need before making a swift and fine cut in one take.

Keep the Cutters Sharp

It is a common trait of all bladed tools that if they become dull, they will not function correctly. This also applies to cigar cutters; although the wrapper can be cut quickly and easily, it does not mean that your cutter won’t eventually start to wear down. Therefore, you should keep an eye out for any signs of it becoming less effective.

It is important to ensure that your cutting blade is sharp, as a dull cutter can ruin the experience of one of your favorite stogie. You may be able to sharpen it yourself or you may need to replace it – either way, make sure that your cigar is cut with precision!

Avoid Deep Cuts

Knowing how to cut a cigar properly is an acquired skill, and it varies depending on the type and brand of stogie. It’s important to remember not to cut too deeply into the cigar when cutting, as this can ruin the smoking experience.

It is not an exact science to achieve the ideal cut, but deep cuts are usually easily recognizable as they penetrate beyond the wrapper and away from the cap. On the contrary, a very shallow cut may not even go past the angle of the endcap, leaving you with a smaller or awkward cigar to smoke.

Why is Important to Cut your Cigar Correctly?

For those who are unfamiliar, cutting a cigar may seem intimidating. However, even if you’re just starting out, don’t worry, as it is not particularly challenging.

It is essential to cut correctly, as doing so incorrectly can ruin its construction. Moreover, cutting the cigar improperly will diminish its quality significantly.

If you want to get the most flavor out of your cigar, it is essential that you burn the tobacco leaves evenly. To ensure this, you must cut an opening in the cap end of the stogie with precision so as not to damage its structure.


What’s the ideal cigar-cutting tool for a beginner?

A guillotine cutter is often recommended for beginners due to its straightforward design. It’s easy to use and provides a clean cut.

How deep should I cut into the cigar?

On most cigars, cut approximately 1/16 to 1/8 inch above the cap line. This depth prevents damage to the cigar’s construction and maintains its structural integrity.

What’s the proper angle to cut a cigar?

For guillotine and v-cutters, aim for a straight cut at a 90-degree angle to the cigar’s body. This ensures an even and clean cut.

If you found it useful, share with your fellow aficionados:
Adelina Drandeva

Adelina Drandeva

Hello, I am Adelina, the founder and CEO of Smoking Hub and one of its authors. I have over 10 years of experience in smoking various products, including cigars, cigarillos, cigarettes, hookah, and vaping. I enjoy tobacco products for the social and relaxing experience. Cigarillos are more of a once-a-day habit, while smoking hookah and cigars are for special me-time or social occasions where the right tobacco product is paired with a meal, drink, conversation, or all of the above.

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to reach out to me at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *