Everyone knows about humidors, but few know how complex they can be. Even though they come in different sizes & are built with different materials, the same criteria must be met. On top of keeping cigars from drying out, humidors must also repel tobacco beetles. When picking a humidor, there are more options than you think. Each type of humidor has its strongpoints which are highlighted in the price.
One of the biggest factors in keeping your cigars safe is the type of wood used in the humidor. There are a lot of different types of wood used for humi’s, but not all of them provide adequate protection. As a rule of thumb, the inside environment of the humidor must maintain 70°F & 70% humidity. To keep this microclimate balanced, only high quality woods can be used. For this reason Spanish Cedar has become the standard for humidors, but American Red Cedar & Honduran Mahogany are also used.
Choosing the Best Wood for Your Humidor
As you browse through different humidor brands, you will quickly realize that Spanish Cedar reigns supreme. Pretty much every high end humidor will feature this exotic wood. This is due to the many favorable characteristics of Spanish Cedar. On top of looking elegant, it naturally prevents tobacco beetles from boring into your cigars. The strong odor emitted by Spanish Cedar creates an unfavorable environment for tobacco beetles.
It’s also the most effective wood for helping regulate the temperature & humidity levels of your cigars. This unmatched regulation helps prevent cigars from losing their tastes over time. So if you want your cigars to stay pungent, you can’t go wrong with Spanish Cedar.
Even though Spanish Cedar is the most effective wood for humidors, it’s far from perfect. Despite what the name implies, Spanish Cedar isn’t produced in Spain. Each plank is imported from Brazil & other parts of the Amazon rain forest. This leads to the biggest downside of Spanish Cedar, the price. Extracting this precious wood out of the rainforest & getting it to the factory comes at a cost. On top of nearly doubling the price of the humi, it can also fund illegal logging in the Amazon rainforest. That being said, it’s still the best choice if your budget allows.
Even though Spanish Cedar has stolen the show, other types of wood also work great for humidors. After Spanish Cedar, the two most popular types of wood are Honduran Mahogany & American Red Cedar. These woods provide budget friendly options, but each one has its downsides.
Honduran Mahogany has become a favorite since its absorption rate is strikingly similar to Spanish Cedar. It’s also a fraction of the cost, which makes it extremely attractive to new smokers. Unfortunately, it does little to deter tobacco beetles & worms.
The third most popular option is American Red Cedar. This wood has similar characteristics to Spanish Cedar, but what sets it apart is its smell. If you leave cigars in the humidor for too long they can acquire a “woody” taste. This makes most cigar aficionados shy away from this option, but its low price still makes it appealing.
Out of these three options there is one clear winner. However, all three of these woods will keep your cigars in excellent shape. In the end the deciding factor is your budget. If you have the money, purchasing a Spanish Cedar humidor is a wise investment. But not everyone has the capital needed for this purchase so there’s no shame in going with the other options. You can always pick up a cheap humi while you save up for a Spanish Cedar masterpiece!