Mango Salad – by Nava

After last week’s patchouli extravaganza, I’ve had the most intense craving for Thai food. Don’t ask; it’s quite likely completely hormonal.

One of the Thai dishes I love most is a mango salad. I love mangoes, but never buy them because I am deathly afraid of slicing off a finger while dicing one up. And, in a former life, I used to be a Thai food restaurant hound, so I would eat mango salads fairly regularly. What’s this got to do with fragrance? I think I’ve found the perfect scent that smells like a mango salad – minus the red onions and hot peppers: Ed Hardy Hearts & Daggers.

Yes, I went slumming in Shoppers Drug Mart the other day, and sniffed this one. I believe I once referred to Ed Hardy scents as the deodorant of choice on the Rock of Love Bus (that Bret Michaels skankfest VH1 reality show), or some such insult. I don’t know what made me pick this one up, but I did, and I was overcome by mango salad. Imagine that…

You guys know I’m kind of obsessed with tattoo art; my new favorite insomniac show is TLC’s NY Ink, which I watch every Thursday at midnight. I’ve always been somewhat attracted to the Ed Hardy bottles, but not the scents. The first one is all strawberry fruit salad and most appropriate on girls half my age, but something about Hearts and Daggers appealed to me. The notes are blood orange orpur, violet leaf, Gala apple, mango, apple blossoms, pink jasmine, cashmere musk, amber, benzoin tears orpur, blonde woods. In all that hot mess, all I get is blood orange and mango. And I can’t stop thinking about it.

I’m a huge fan of Sarah Horowitz-Thran’s Perfect Perfumes. I used to love layering her Perfect Nectar and Perfect Veil scents. That’s a fantastic combination of juicy blood orange and skin musk. I wore them to death, and haven’t visited them in a long time. I drained my bottles and never re-purchased them, but dare I say it, Hearts and Daggers comes pretty darn close; albeit a bit heavier on the fruit than on the musk.

These days I’m constantly drawn to scents that remind me of other scents. I think that’s always been a thing of mine but it’s shaping up into more of an obsession. Every time I go sniffing on the down-low, I think to myself, gee, that smells like such-and-such, or that reminds me of this scent I used to have. Does anyone else do this? Please do me a favor and speak up. If I’m in need of help I know you guys would tell me!

I need to get myself to a Thai restaurant, pronto. There are loads of them here in Toronto so finding one is no problem. The thing is, I’d rather go to Wild Ginger on Grove Street in Manhattan, but I don’t think it’s there anymore. I used to love that place, especially their mango salad. It was in a great location in the West Village where I could stop in at Aedes de Venustas before dinner, and Magnolia Bakery for some cupcakes afterwards. But, things have changed. Of course Magnolia Bakery will always be safe as long as there are Sex and the City tours still bringing tourists to it. Not much I can do about that.

In the meantime, there’s Ed Hardy at Sephora and Shoppers Drug Mart. “Love Kills Slowly” is the motto of the brand. Crap kills quickly, but I must admit: where this scent is concerned, I won’t mind if it hangs around for a long time.

  • AnnieA says:

    I never think about Shopper’s for perfume, but the SAs there LOVE to offer makeup advice. A friend of mine could never find a good undereye concealer, and they made sure she got the right one. Hmm, wonder why I am now craving Thai food…? (hee)

  • John says:

    Sounds like it’s time to refresh your Sarah Horowitz bottles.

    I just did a personalized session with her. A wonderfully-indulgent experience, and came away with my own amazing fragrance. Sarah is such a delight.

  • Darryl says:

    Don’t feel crazy, Nava – I “comparison sniff” all the time, almost unconsciously, and not just among perfumes, but bath products, foodstuffs, air fresheners, etc. I didn’t realize Cartier Declaration contained a lavender note until I started using a particularly zesty lavender hand soap, and a lightbulb went off in my NoseBrain. I got a good whiff of some pickled ginger at work one day (I work in a restaurant) and, bam, another lightbulb. (Interestingly, I didn’t get the lightbulb from fresh ginger, which I handle practically daily and adore the smell of. Apparently Declaration’s ginger is pickled. Fun Facts!) Now when I smell Declaration, the ginger and lavender are practically screaming at me. I’m discerning notes, just like a real perfumista! :d

    And now you’ve awakened a desire in me to smell…ugghh…an Ed Hardy fragrance. I always give them a wide berth at the department store counters, but I will absolutely give Hearts and Daggers a sniff if it recalls Thai salads in any way. LOVE Thai food.

    • Nava says:

      Love the name of your blog, Darryl!

      I too used to give Ed Hardy scents a wide berth, but these days, I’ll sniff just about anything!

      BTW, WalMart bathroom cleaner smells remarkably similar to Philosophy Pure Grace. I think we’re both a little “touched”. :d

  • dremybluz says:

    i just bought a bottle of ed hardy a couple of days ago. the original top notes were fine but the dry down was fantastic. ebay was a lot cheaper than ulta or sephora.

  • Kirsten says:

    Hi Nava,

    I do love Mangoes too, usually with strawberries and a little creme fraiche and chopped mint.

    I cut mine like Queen Cupcake. My daughter calls them mango hedgehogs!

    For smell-a-like perfumes I found that Ginestet Sauvignonne is just like CK One (original), and Donna Karan Black Cashmere smells just like Dunhill for Men, Eau de Cologne. Unfortunately, both CK One and Dunhill were worn by my Dad, and I don’t have the fondest of memories of the man!

    • Nava says:

      Funny you mentioned CK One Kirsten. I was looking in on my neighbor’s cat while they were away last weekend and while tending to the litterbox, I noticed a bottle of CK One in the bathroom!

      I must work on overcoming my fear of cutting mangoes. Burning my hand in the oven the other day isn’t going to help. 😮

  • Ninara Poll says:

    I’ve never had mango salad, it sounds yummy! I’m more used to mango with lime juice squeezed on top of it, or just mango by itself. I peel it and then slice large strips or chunks out of it and have yet to ever cut myself.

    • Nava says:

      It’s divine! If the mangoes are especially sweet, the combination of the fruit and spices is delicious.

      • Ninara Poll says:

        I *must* find a recipe online, then (I think there’s only one Thai restaurant in this region, and from what I’ve heard about it it’s not exactly authentic cuisine…. )!

  • nozknoz says:

    Nava, interesting topics! BTW, I really enjoy the dried mango slices sold in the dried fruit section of my local supermarket – yum!

    Like Ann, I’m constantly wracking my brain to figure out what perfume another is reminding me of – and I usually can’t! I guess that’s inevitable with hundreds of samples lying about. Recently I was delighted to finally realize that Frapin 1697 was reminding me of BK Back to Black. :-)

  • Lavanya says:

    I love Thai mango salad too (with the raw mangoes, right?)..yum! In India we’d dip sliced raw mangoes in chilli powder+salt and eat- it was my favorite summer treat!

    Many scents remind me of other smells and I am constantly racking my brains to nail the comparison..Most of my associations are related to food.. :D

  • Flora says:

    My idea of mango salad is this year’s Escada summer scent, Taj Sunset. It is absolutely yummy and even though it does not last long, like all of its ilk, it is very pleasant while it does. I am still considering buying a bottle even though I can’t really justify it -it’s just so much FUN!

    • Nava says:

      Most of those Escada scents are fun – just very fleeting as you pointed out.

  • Julie says:

    I also love and own an Ed Hardy scent – Love & Luck. It also has the least tacky label, imo – the geisha girl.

  • Lisa D says:

    I wouldn’t turn my nose down at Mango Salad, but I’d prefer Mango with Sticky Rice, one of my all-time favorite Thai dishes (dessert).

    I am also drawn to scents that remind me of other scents. I originally bought Theorema because it reminded me of SL Douce Amere (though I’ve come to love it for its own sake). The same happened with Ava Luxe No. 23, which reminded me a lot of OJ Woman.

    Haven’t tried any Ed Hardy scents, though I have thought that the bottles had some appeal. It would be a refreshing change to be able to pick up a wearable fragrance at my local Walgreen’s, though, so I’ll look for Hearts and Daggers the next time I’m there, thanks!

    • Ann says:

      Mmmm … I adore Theorema so will definitely have to sniff Douce Amere. Thanks!

      • Nava says:

        Ava Luxe 23 is GORGEOUS!

        • Lisa D says:

          Nava – isn’t it just? As with the discovery of Theorema, when I found No. 23 and bought it because it reminded me of Ormonde Jayne, I ended up falling in love with it, too. It is one of only two perfumes that I’ve ever been complimented on while wearing (the other being Bois de Paradis).

      • Lisa D says:

        Ann, I think the similarities between the two have something to do with their mix of citrus and creamy notes, dusted with spice – both put me in mind of an orange creamsicle (in the best possible way).

  • Queen Cupcake says:

    Hi Nava, I enjoyed this–thanks a lot, now I’m hungry! LOL I’m heading over to Marshall’s right after work today…

    Here’s a little tip for cutting (& eating) a mango:
    Cut the fruit in half along the perimeter of the flattest edge. Now you have two flattish halves; cut out that giant pit. With a small, sharp paring knife, score a checkerboard pattern into the fruit, taking care not to cut through the skin. Now “pop” the skin so it is a concave, instead of convex, surface. The little cubes of mango flesh will stand up. You can cut them off for your salad, or nibble away at them on the spot!

    Have a fun weekend!

    • Queen Cupcake says:

      I don’t mean “flattest edge”, I mean the edge that will make 2 flattest halves. Sheesh. Gotta know geometry to eat some fruits…

      • jen says:

        Sounds very civilized. Just peel it and eat it over the sink is my motto.

        • Nava says:

          LOL! I think that’s the only way to avoid losing fingers! I’ve actually done that with grapefruits!

  • Joanna says:

    Gee thanks Nava. Now I’m jonesing for Thai but I live out here in the middle of corn and bean fields without a Thai restaurant within 100 miles. But also thanks Nava, I like Hearts and Daggers too…but I usually hide it in the back of the closet in case anyone should ever look. It’s like that Michael Bolton cd I used to hide when all my friends and I were into acid jazz and garage punk. I still liked a little M.B once in a while but not when anyone could witness it.
    Some day we should all confess to the scents we hide in the back of the closet. Hearts and Daggers is not alone back there in mine.

    • Musette says:

      oh, honey, tell me about it! 8-| there are some doozies in my closet that I will NEVER admit to!

      I live in corn and bean fields, too. So you know what I do? I make my own Thai food. We just had chicken and green beans in a Thai green curry/pesto sauce – spiiiiicy! and gooooood! I pick up my Thai spices when I go back to civilization every couple of weeks but when I can’t get there I have them sent from my fave spice house:

      ….now I want some mango salad. And a cupcake.

      xo >-)

      • Musette says:

        oops! meant to link you to the curries as well – but when you get on there you’ll see them – the Ras El Hanout is phenomenal – heck, they all are! =p~


        • Joanna says:

          Mmmm I love curries. Thanks Musette. I’ve been trying thai and indian recipes at home lately since it gets expensive driving to Rochester or Minneapolis each time I have a craving. And I’ll have only my imagination to fill in what could be lurking in the back of your perfume closet.

  • Tom says:


    You’ve done the impossible. You have made me want to try an Ed Hardy scent. Hell is now air-conditioned.

  • maggiecat says:

    I think that as we sniff and sniff and sniff, eventually we begin to notice patterns and similarities. I know that the man who sits in the row ahead of us at arena football always wears a scent that reminds me of SJP’s Lovely. It isn’t that, quite, but it’s close. Gwen Stefani’s Lamb reminded me of Philosophy’s Amazing Grace. Have fun at the Thai restaurant!!

  • Sherri M. says:

    Nava, have you tried the new Manquier Metisse from Huitieme Arte, by Pierre Guillaume (Parfumerie Generale). I didn’t think I’d like it, given the fruity mango, but it’s actually a soft, creamy gentle comfort scent for summer. At least when dabbed…I ordered a spray sample to see if it becomes obnoxiously sweet and fruity spritzed on.

    Thanks for a great review & have a great weekend! :-)

  • Ann says:

    Hi Nava! I’ve not tried mango salad and there aren’t any Thai restaurants around me, but now I’ll be on the lookout for one in my travels. And heavens no, you’re not alone in your “comparison” sniffing. Lots of times I’ll smell something and be wracking my brain all day trying to figure out what it reminds me of. Sometimes it’ll come to me in the middle of the night. Can’t think of an example right off the bat, but will let you know. Happy weekend, all!!