While cigar and pipe cases are widely diverse in shape, style and materials, we personally select each and every case we sell. If it won’t do a great job for you, we won’t sell it!
There are two main reasons why you would want to invest in a cigar case. The first is to physically protect cigars you are carrying with you. Once you bend or break a cigar, there’s no coming back from that damage.
Second is to properly maintain the ambient temperature and humidity within the cigar while it is outside your humidor. Cigars will dry out very quickly if left in low humidity environments. Large changes in temperature, like when a cigar is placed in a shirt pocket up against your body or in direct sunlight, can cause sudden expansion or contraction as well as a condensation issue between the cigar and its cellophane wrapper. The humidity in the tobacco condenses on the cellophane making the wrapper leaf overly wet while the internal tobacco becomes overly dry.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A CASE
I think the second most important thing to consider is rigidity. One of the two primary reasons to use a case at all is to physically protect the cigar. If the case bends easily, that defeats that purpose and leaves your cigars open to just as much damage as they might sustain from being carried in a pocket or loose in your hand. This is why I shy away from carrying thin leather cases here at the shop. They might slip into a suit coat pocket easily, but they leave the cigars open to too much chance of damage.
Thirdly, the case should do a reasonable job of helping the cigar maintain its humidity and temperature. You don’t necessarily need an airtight seal, but the case should close up well enough to slow humidity loss to a trickle. You can get cases that have a humidifier in them, but a good seal is usually enough as long as you’re transporting your cigars for fairly immediate use.
I think one important thing one should look for in a case is that it should protect your cigars from the sun. Cases typically get thrown in the console of a golf cart or on a picnic table and are subject to direct sunlight. A clear case will let the sun’s rays cook the humidity out of the cigar in no time whereas a case you can’t see through will absorb or even reflect the brunt of the sun’s rays effects. No matter what the case is made out of, if left in direct unfiltered sunlight, the case will heat up and cook the cigars inside. So, it’s a good idea to make every attempt to shade the case from the sun.
The last major thing to look for is style. It’s the least important item on the list to most, but if you’re going to invest in a case, it might as well suit your sense of style.