What is bloom and what is mold?
Bloom (often called plume) is the slow rising of essential oils to the surface of the cigar. It first appears as tiny crystals and will eventually make the cigar appear dusty. A more advance bloom gives an opaque white look to the entire cigar. Bloom isn’t harmful to cigars. It’s an indication that the cigar has been maintained at a 70+% RH for a long period of time. Many smokers prefer a cigar in the bloom state. Mold is a fungus. It appears on the surface of cigars when the relative humidity in your humidor exceeds 80%. It looks like blue/gray fuzzy patches on the surface of the wrapper and will spread by producing spores. If mold appears, you should remove the affected cigars and check for any mold on the wood of your humidor. It’s important to separate the affected cigars immediately and to wipe down the interior lining of your humidor with isopropyl or denatured alcohol. This will kill mold and may leave slight stains on your humidor’s interior wood. Click here to see photos of mold. Gently wipe the mold off of your cigars and leave them at room humidity for 36 hours, then place them back into your humidor (obviously after addressing the moisture problem that caused the mold in the first place). Check these cigars every few days to ensure that mold growth has stopped. Some people recommend more drastic measures such as placing your cigars in the freezer to kill the mold. Try our method first before going to such extremes. If your problem continues, you may need a new humidor.