Are Guerlain Mayotte and Guerlain Mahora the Same Perfumes? {Ask Marie-Helene}

Hello - I read your blog everyday, and really enjoy it. 

I have a question – but first, a little background.  We were in Epcot the other day, and of course, I stopped in to the French and Italian perfume shops.   In the Guerlain store, I came across “Mayotte”, which they were telling me (actually pompously insisting to me) was a “Vintage” fragrance, but I knew that I had read somewhere that it was actually called something else in the last several years or so, and then reissued in a new bottle.  I just did not recall the name of the original fragrance at the time.  Since returning home, I’ve done my research, and it was originally called Mahora.   I liked the fragrance, but I didn’t need a 4.2 oz bottle for $190.00.  I love fragrances, and have many – and because I have many, I prefer smaller bottles.  Which leads me to my question – is it absolutely the same juice?  On your website I read that it is, however, on another it says that it’s been reformulated.  I can get it at a great discount on one of the website discounters, but not having tested Mahora (and having tested the Mayotte), I don’t want to purchase it, unless it actually is the same juice.   I defer to your expertise.

Thank you,

Please read our answer to Jamie.......

Dear Jamie,

Thank you for your kind words. I checked with Guerlain and they confirmed that Mayotte and Mahora are exactly the same formulations. I then inquired further and asked which of the previous concentrations of Mahora Mayotte reproduces and the answer is that it reproduces the eau de parfum concentration of Mahora. The explanation for the change of name is that because they had not patented the name "Mahora" they were not able to re-use it this time around and had to find a substitutive name for the perfume, which is now named after the place from which the ylang ylang and other tropical blooms are harvested for Guerlain and refers to the plantations they own there.

I will personally compare Mayotte with Mahora eau de toilette and eau de parfum concentrations and report back later. Meanwhile, since perfumes are living things in as much as they use ingredients that age and natural essences that from necessity will vary from one harvest to another and moreover interact differently with each persons' body chemistry of the moment, the end result might be that you will find subtle differences between the new Mayotte and the Mahora edp, but these should not be, in principle, very marked. And you can apparently rest assured that they intend to be the same perfumes. Since perfumery is the art of subtle nuances, you may find these differences significant enough to your nose to choose the Mayotte over the Mahora edp or vice versa.

Hope this helps,


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6 Comments | Leave a comment

  1. This is so good that you have the official info on this.

    I have been in vain saying that they are the same to be haughtily rejected by some who pose as more refined noses arguing they detect obvious differences.
    Pretence has run its course, I say.

  2. Chere Marie-Helene,
    Comment vas-tu ? Tu me manques . Y-a-t-il un single note musk fragrance ? Mon ami m'a demande si un parfum de musc existe ?
    J'espere que tout va bien avec toi .
    Madelyn E

    Madelyn E
  3. Helg,

    I am curious now to sniff the different incarnations of the scent.

  4. Among the simple musk fragrances I personally favor Love by Auric Blends. Egyptian Goddess is very popular too in that brand. Kiel's Musk has a floral nuance of lily of the valley, which happens sometimes with musk used in very small quantity. If she likes clean white musk, then TBS White Musk is a classic.

    My own favorite less simple musk fragrances are Féminité du Bois and Muscs Koublaï Khan. Jacomo for Her is also very sexy (see review in my index).

    I have been wanting to do a series on musk fragrances, a sort of Hall of Fame of Musks as I love this note when it's done right. Please check back in the coming days.

  5. I as well just returned from epcot. I had the Best time and so much fun in Guerlain there. The only perfume my Mother ever wore was Shalimar & as a young girl I "didn't get it" But NOW I do! Anyway it was her dying wish to take us to Disney as a family trip. A trip she never made. I am now 45 years old and I was so happy to vacation there finally. I wanted a special reminder ...and what better than a scent. I picked L'heure bleu & Mayotte. Of course the salesman in the store told me things like you can only buy this in "11 places in the world" To me it was just part of the "Disney magic" And I have a beautiful tribute to my Mom.

  6. I returned from Orlando a fews days ago and I too bought Mayotte. It is a beautiful scent and I am captivated by it. It is unlike any other fragrance I bought. This buy was definitely a highlight in my vacation.


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