We’ve all been there: the bachelor party/wedding/birth of your buddy’s child where someone hands you a cigar you may want to smoke someday. The problem is if you don’t have a humidor to store it in, that cigar will dry out and become unsmokable in a matter of days. Whatever you do, don’t follow your uncle’s advice and put it in the freezer or refrigerator—that WILL ruin it. Luckily, there are a number of easy ways to keep cigars fresh without an expensive humidor, using items you probably already own.
If you’re just looking to store a cigar or three, a common Ziploc bag and a moist sponge are all you need. Just take a large freezer bag and place the sticks inside. Next, wet the new sponge and ring out any excess water. Place the sponge in the bag and seal tightly. The sponge will keep the setup humid for several weeks. Just be sure to check in on the cigars occasionally to make sure the sponge didn’t dry up.
Tupperware Container or Jar
For a little added protection, a Tupperware container or glass jar can make for a very nice makeshift humidor. These can be especially nice if you want to store more than a couple of cigars. You can still use a sponge to keep the humidity up, but this time around you should use distilled water—it helps prevent mold and ensures that the cigars will not be exposed to any chemicals found in standard tap water that could affect the flavor.
If you plan on keeping the cigars around for more than a few months, the best option—outside of a humidor—would be a standard cooler. Any size cooler can work depending on how many cigars you are looking to store. A cooler will do a nice job of keeping the relative humidity where it needs to be to be for an extended period of time. While a wet sponge will certainly do the trick, you may want to consider picking up a gallon of distilled water, a proper humidification device, and a hydrometer. For less than $20 bucks, you can have a full-time humidor that requires very little babysitting.