I have recently purchased a chewable phoenix pendant from Stimtastic, and this is such an excellent life decision that I want to make sure everyone else knows about it.

I am the sort of person who chews on my hair, my nails, my clothes, paper, necklaces, the little strings on tea bags, charging cables, headphone cords, leaves, etc. etc. I have fretted for a long time that many of the things I chew on are not exactly intended for human consumption, and thus may very well contain neurotoxins or carcinogens.

The Stimtastic chewy necklace frees me from such worries! It’s made of food-grade silicone, free of lead, heavy metal, BPA, phthlates, and everything else you don’t want inside your mouth. In a private email, they assured me that the cord is also safe to chew on (although you may break it).

However, my enthusiasm is not just about it making my chewing safer, but also making it more enjoyable. Some of it, I think, is that the designs on the phoenix pendant are very tactilely interesting, both for the mouth and the fingers; I get the feeling that this product was designed by someone who chews. And some of it is that I don’t always have in the back of my mind “I shouldn’t be doing this” or “I am going to GET CANCER and DIE”, and I don’t have to spit it out as soon as I notice I’m chewing. It turns out that, without the anxiety and guilt, I actually find chewing really soothing and fun. It’s relatively rare that one discovers an entirely new physical pleasure, particularly in adulthood, so I’d give this a positive review for that, if nothing else.

One of the things I appreciate about Stimtastic is that its products are aimed at adults. A lot of chew toy websites have child models, testimonials from nine-year-olds, and statements about how “kids love it!” The pendant itself is designed to be discreet: it passes quite well as an ordinary, non-chewy necklace. I’m not exactly sure how discreet it actually manages to be, given that I’m eating it all the time, but the thought is nice. Be aware that two and a half inches (the size of my phoenix pendant) is actually quite large for a necklace; I don’t think it goes very well with my fashion sense. If you wear necklaces, you might want to measure some of your favorite pendants so you know what sizes to look for.

Unfortunately, my pendant is too thick and kind of makes my jaw hurt when I chew it too much. I don’t think that’s necessarily a failure of the design, though. I’m a pretty heavy chewer, and in order to make it heavy enough to stand up to my biting it needs to be heavy enough that it makes my jaw hurt. This is still an annoying part of an otherwise wonderful experience.

While the thick parts of the pendant are standing up quite well, I’ve already chewed through one of the thinner decorative bits, and another is showing some signs of wear. On the other hand, given that most of their products are less than ten dollars, I would be perfectly happy to buy another one in six months.