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Cigar Punch Vs. Cigar Cutter What Is Right For You?

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Both a cigar punch and a cigar cutter are going to give the desired result- a cigar ready to be enjoyed. The two are quite different but there is not one that is better than the other. This is purely a personal choice.

If you are trying to decide between one or the other why not buy both and test them out for yourself. Outlined below are the key differences between the two. If you think you’d rather stick to cigar cutters then be sure to read our reviews of the best cigar cutter.

Cigar punch vs cutter

Cigar Punch Vs Cutter – Major Differences

Type of cut

A cigar cutter slices off the cap of the cigar whereas a cigar punch creates a small hole in the cap.


Most cutters are of guillotine style with the cap being cut in one rather fast motion. With a cigar punch, the blades will be inserted into the cap and twist until a hole has been created. After which you pull the punch out.


A 6mm to 9mm hole is the normal size for a cigar punch cutter. As you can imagine this is quite small so issues with the smoke not being able to travel through can arise. You may find the draw is quite tough. With a cutter, the cap is clean cut off meaning the cigar can produce stronger and denser smoke.

Top Pick For Cigar Punch

Xikar 9mm

Xikar 9mm

The Xikar 9mm cigar punch cutter is a favorite here at Cigar Cigar. Xikar produces top quality products and this punch is no exception. The twist mechanism of the Xikar means when you close the punch it clears the tobacco from the blades.

You also can alter the depth of cut, allowing you to tailor your smoking experience. Definitely one to have in your smoking area or on a set of keys.


Some people like the smallness of a cigar punch. They can easily be attached to keys.


This goes back to the size of the hole created from a punch. Some argue that the limited smoke traveling through means the flavor of the cigar is dull when compared with a cigar cut using a cutter.


A cigar punch is quite small and very easy to travel with. Cutters are a fair bit larger than a punch.


Through the use of a punch the risk of ruining the cap of a cigar is reduced. If you have never cut a cigar before you may notice there can be a bit of loose tobacco while smoking.

Common Errors

With a punch, if you stuff up you can use a cigar cutter to fix the mistake and slice the cap off entirely. If you slice the cap, you need to do so properly as you only get one chance.

Tar Buildup

One complaint from the use of a cigar punch is the tar buildup in the punch. This accumulates quite fast and will eventually alter the taste of your cigars. This is not an issue when using a cutter.

Types of Cigars

A cigar punch can only be used on round cap cigars. Cutters can be used on every type of cigar.

Top Pick For Cigar Cutter

Xikar X8

While Xikar is one of our favorite brands for cigar accessories, the Xikar X8 cigar cutter is great. Like most cutters, the Xikar is a basic guillotine-style with very sharp stainless steel blades. With the ability to cut up to 70 ring gauge size this makes for a great cutter. Like all Xikar products, they offer a lifetime warranty.

Bottom Line

Overall the choice of a cigar cutter or cigar punch is entirely personal. This is a popular topic amongst many cigar smokers. Either way, you cannot go wrong with a punch or a cutter. We recommend trialing both, you can never go wrong.

Now that you have an idea about the best way to cut your cigar, check out our guide on how to light a cigar and our post of the best cigar lighter! 

Cigar cutter Prestige Royal
Dan Stevenson
Dan Stevenson

I have been smoking cigars for 30 years and counting, I started at 18 years old with mild Cubans and worked my way up to medium and now bold. I own 4 humidors, that I try to keep stocked at all times.

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