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Was thinking earlier today about how retrohaling fundamentally changed how much I enjoy cigars. Glad to see you’ve discovered its joys!

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I wish I could retrohale more often. Some people do it all the time when smoking but my nose is too sensitive and won't allow me to do it much. Depends on the cigar. It's ok. Maybe my nostrils will eventually numb and get used to it but that hasn't happened yet.

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Definitely a game changer for me as well. Unfortunately, it’s tree pollen season where I live, so my sinuses are super sensitive at the moment. Each retrohale seems like a full body and strength Nicaraguan..

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10 minutes ago, Mrcpt said:

Definitely a game changer for me as well. Unfortunately, it’s tree pollen season where I live, so my sinuses are super sensitive at the moment. Each retrohale seems like a full body and strength Nicaraguan..

I have the exact same problem my friend. It'll be mid June before I'm able to attempt a retrohale. 

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Flonase is a vital part of maintaining my ability to retrohale this time of the year. 

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1 hour ago, Mrcpt said:

Definitely a game changer for me as well. Unfortunately, it’s tree pollen season where I live, so my sinuses are super sensitive at the moment. Each retrohale seems like a full body and strength Nicaraguan..

Tree pollen is definitely hindering my experience as well.

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Stick with it if it burns, that goes away in time.  The reward is better cigars.

5 hours ago, BossHogg said:

Tree pollen is definitely hindering my experience as well.

Daily Zyrtec

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5 hours ago, MrBirdman said:

Flonase is a vital part of maintaining my ability to retrohale this time of the year. 

Same here but it’s losing its effectiveness from overuse haha.

5 hours ago, griller said:

I have the exact same problem my friend. It'll be mid June before I'm able to attempt a retrohale. 

TBH I’m smoking mostly NC until then for that reason haha! Plus That’ll give all my new acquisitions time to acclimate. 

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5 hours ago, Kaptain Karl said:

I can barely taste a cigar without retrohaling! Another reason why I love CC’s so much, it’s too often too brutal to retro NC’s!

Since the pollen is at me right now I am resorting to the NC for reasons mentioned above.. also the flavor is often strong enough to get away without a retro.. not to say it’s enjoyable but at least its there. 

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15 minutes ago, Ginseng said:

The classic retrohale is one of two techniques I use to experience a cigar in its fullness.

Another complementary, penetrating technique is the parallel pull. Here's what I do.

  • exhale, in preparation
  • bring the cigar to my mouth, pointing 45-60 degrees down from horizontal
  • start to pull with my mouth, sealing off the oral cavity from the pharynx (so you  can still inhale to the lungs through the nose)
  • once the blue smoke from the stops issuing, it only take a quick moment once you begin your pull, inhale through the nose as you continue the oral draw

When you do this, you won't see any smoke come up the barrel of the cigar but you will receive a unique read on the leaves and, I believe, significantly the wrapper, as an invisible vapor that is pure and strong. It's not the product of combustion, thus no smoke. It is the essence of the (outermost) tobacco, released by the heat of the stoked coal and that rises up the exterior of the barrel of the cigar. 

The net result is you're filling the oral cavity with mouth-drawn smoke pulled through the cigar and you're taking in through the nose, the aroma released from the wrapper and tobacco near the active foot.

When I do this, I will have revealed all three faces of the cigar. The First face is the gray-white smoked pulled through the bundle that is either retrohaled out the nose, pure or carburated. and is the majority of the smoke that lingers in the room. This is what most think of when they think of "smoking a cigar." The Second face is the blue smoke that issues directly from the combustion at the foot. It is sharp and hot, and dry but precise. The Third face is the "external" sampling as I've described above. It is warm, soft, and the richest of the three. Because it is not smoke, because it is warm and not hot, you can inhale deeply without irritation. 

I know this sounds complicated and irrational, but I guarantee it shows you something precious that is otherwise hidden. 

I can follow this up with an advanced carburated retrohale by exhaling this air while feeding the smoke from my mouth outward through the nose. 

After all over 30 years of smoking so many different cigars, I've found that technique is the variable that allows me to extract the most pleasure and experience from each and every cigar...especially at today's (Cohiba)  prices.

I learned something very similar from pipe smoking. The “breathe method” smoking technique. 

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31 minutes ago, Ginseng said:

The classic retrohale is one of two techniques I use to experience a cigar in its fullness.

Another complementary, penetrating technique is the parallel pull. Here's what I do.

  • exhale, in preparation
  • bring the cigar to my mouth, pointing 45-60 degrees down from horizontal
  • start to pull with my mouth, sealing off the oral cavity from the pharynx (so you  can still inhale to the lungs through the nose)
  • once the blue smoke from the stops issuing, it only take a quick moment once you begin your pull, inhale through the nose as you continue the oral draw

When you do this, you won't see any smoke come up the barrel of the cigar but you will receive a unique read on the leaves and, I believe, significantly the wrapper, as an invisible vapor that is pure and strong. It's not the product of combustion, thus no smoke. It is the essence of the (outermost) tobacco, released by the heat of the stoked coal and that rises up the exterior of the barrel of the cigar. 

The net result is you're filling the oral cavity with mouth-drawn smoke pulled through the cigar and you're taking in through the nose, the aroma released from the wrapper and tobacco near the active foot.

When I do this, I will have revealed all three faces of the cigar. The First face is the gray-white smoked pulled through the bundle that is either retrohaled out the nose, pure or carburated. and is the majority of the smoke that lingers in the room. This is what most think of when they think of "smoking a cigar." The Second face is the blue smoke that issues directly from the combustion at the foot. It is sharp and hot, and dry but precise. The Third face is the "external" sampling as I've described above. It is warm, soft, and the richest of the three. Because it is not smoke, because it is warm and not hot, you can inhale deeply without irritation. 

I know this sounds complicated and irrational, but I guarantee it shows you something precious that is otherwise hidden. 

I can follow this up with an advanced carburated retrohale by exhaling this air while feeding the smoke from my mouth outward through the nose. 

After all over 30 years of smoking so many different cigars, I've found that technique is the variable that allows me to extract the most pleasure and experience from each and every cigar...especially at today's (Cohiba)  prices.

So glad we're seeing the return of your wisdom to the forum Wilkey!

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1 minute ago, Habana Mike said:

So glad we're seeing the return of your wisdom to the forum Wilkey!

Pfft. 😀 I'm not a wise man. I just hate not getting the most out of a $20 cigar...or a $5 one.

But I will surely be exploiting this technique when I burn the Dunhill Estupendos I've been saving. It is the second or third most expensive cigar I have and irreplaceable for a non-collector like myself.

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Perhaps it's embarrassing to say this but I really don't know how to retrohale even after many times of trying. At best I get the smoke to the (bottom of my nasal passage?), and that helps with flavor. That action does irritate my sinuses though. 

To do that, I breathe in, hold my breath, draw on the cigar and hold it in my mouth, and exhale my air through my nose.

Any additional tips for noobs like me? 

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3 minutes ago, Meklown said:

Perhaps it's embarrassing to say this but I really don't know how to retrohale even after many times of trying. At best I get the smoke to the (bottom of my nasal passage?), and that helps with flavor. That action does irritate my sinuses though. 

To do that, I breathe in, hold my breath, draw on the cigar and hold it in my mouth, and exhale my air through my nose.

Any additional tips for noobs like me? 

I tried many times to retrohale in the beginning and never got it to work. I tried to move the smoke to the back of my mouth and it often ended up in my lungs resulting in ridiculous coughing. And then, one day it just worked. Don't know how though, it just happened automatically.

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2 hours ago, Meklown said:

Perhaps it's embarrassing to say this but I really don't know how to retrohale even after many times of trying. At best I get the smoke to the (bottom of my nasal passage?), and that helps with flavor. That action does irritate my sinuses though. 

To do that, I breathe in, hold my breath, draw on the cigar and hold it in my mouth, and exhale my air through my nose.

Any additional tips for noobs like me? 

I can't do that. Have to let out some smoke, dilute it in my mouth then let it out slowly through the nose and mouth. 

Can't do the angry dragon thing!

 

 

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Yes... It's like cracking the code. It just happens. You try again and again until all of a sudden it clicks and happens. It took me some tries to learn how to retrohale. I just take a draw, hold the smoke in my mouth, close my mouth/throat, somehow relax them, and blow some smoke out of my nostrils.

I suffer from allergies as well and take one Cetirizine tablet per day. I've definitely noticed that some cigars are much easier to retro than others (less or no burn), and yes, CCs lend themselves to retrohaling better than NCs. I'm not sure but I'd also imagine that cigar age has something to do with it, an older cigar will burn less. It's much more pleasant to retro in the first third of the cigar which doesn't need explaining, it makes sense. The smoke is cooler etc. I'm not going to torture myself when enjoying a cigar but I will keep trying it. I think my nose has already taken the first step to getting used to it.

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No doubt it's different for everyone...  I couldn't get the retrohale until, in effect, I stopped trying.  It was kind of like 3-part breathing in yoga.  (Wait.  I can already sense all the eye rolls :)  ...Works for me, though.  It's about first focussing on it, ...and then entirely not focussing on it, just releasing.

After the draw, holding the smoke for a moment, allowing just a bit to escape the mouth, a soft breath in through the nose, pause, then a soft exhale through the nose.  The first time, it happened as just a trickle of the flavor; gradually it became more natural.  

That said, from time to time, I still have to remind myself of the added appreciation it brings, ...which was what I was hoping might be helpful.  

Namaste y'all :)

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Best advice I’ve seen is to clench your jaw after you puff, then exhale. Taught me. 

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5 hours ago, Meklown said:

Perhaps it's embarrassing to say this but I really don't know how to retrohale even after many times of trying. At best I get the smoke to the (bottom of my nasal passage?), and that helps with flavor. That action does irritate my sinuses though. 

To do that, I breathe in, hold my breath, draw on the cigar and hold it in my mouth, and exhale my air through my nose.

Any additional tips for noobs like me? 

You're not alone. Retrohaling is not exactly instinctual. 

Two things. Practice and tolerance. The two are related.

  • Practice - I recommend practicing the process without using a cigar. Close off the back of your oral cavity with your tongue as if you were normally breathing through your nose only. Then open your mouth and lower your jaw as if taking taking a pulll, then purse your lips to seal off the oral cavity. Keep your lips closed throughout the next steps.
    Now relax and drop your tongue, opening the rear of your oral cavity to the pharynx. Just prior to this, I recommend inhaling through your nose so there is already some air in your lungs. Now let some air out from your lungs while raising your jaw to push "smoke" out of your oral cavity. There's only one way for it to go and that is out the back. Here it will mix with the air from your lungs then exit out through your nasal passages. 
    I realize it sounds super clunky and complicated. Like any other physical action with steps, it's simpler in practice and becomes more natural with practice.
     
  • Tolerance - If you have never before done this, are fairly new to cigars (and not a smoker of cigarettes), or are smoking a strong cigar, you will probably end up choking and feeling like you've burned out your nose. This is only natural. To reduce the irritation until you become more accustomed to retrohaling, use the technique of carburation, which I described but did not name in the section above. 
    Carburation is simply dilution of the drawn smoke in your oral cavity with the air contained in your lungs. It can be high dilution (tiny bit of drawn smoke with lots of lung air) which will allow you to retrohale even the strongest of blends. Or it can be low dilution (most or almost all draw smoke with little to no lung air). 

For cigars that are very mild or stingy with smoke production, full retrohale with no carburation is generally most effective for getting the most out of it. For cigars that are strong, retrohaling can reveal things that you simply cannot get from "in mouth, and out" smoking. 

A final point is that retrohaling is related to but not identical to circular smoking. In circular smoking, you release the drawn smoke in your oral cavity and simultaneously inhale through the nose, taking the carburated smoke into your lungs. I will do this rarely, on occasion. This is a different approach to passing drawn smoke across your ofactory receptors but obviously can be considered "riskier" because you're directly drawing smoke into the lungs. Which is why I don't often do it. In the end, it's probably not much different in terms of overall exposure than smoking in a poorly ventilated room with a few others.

Cheers, and give it a try! Retrohaling (or circular smoking) can be considered essential techniques for the dedicated cigarist and so is a skill worth cultivating.

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I wish I could retrohale more often. Some people do it all the time when smoking but my nose is too sensitive and won't allow me to do it much. Depends on the cigar. It's ok. Maybe my nostrils will eventually numb and get used to it but that hasn't happened yet.
I have the same problem.
It really burns my nose and tends to make me cough a lot, so I no longer retrohale

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

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