In 1963, the male Indian peafowl which is commonly called Peacock was named the national bird of India and also the state bird of Rajasthan.
This gorgeous and majestic bird Mayura which is Sanskrit for Peacock is a symbol of beauty, joy, grace, and pride. They have been an inspiration to art and artists all over the world, painters create life-like paintings of them, musicians like to make tunes around them, designers make interiors inspired by them, sculptors carve their images on different types of stone and wood.
They have been a part of all forms of art and continue to be so. Auphorie Mayura (limited edition), created by Eugene Au and Emrys Au is inspired by this sacred fowl.
Guest Post, written by Rajiv Burad
Peacocks have been known to be a huge part of mythology, fables, and folktales. The early ones might have originated from India when Alexander the Great spotted a few fowls on a riverbank, struck by their beauty he forbade any person to kill the majestic fowl.
Peacocks have also been referred to as ill omens in some religions and at the same time in Hindu Mythology a peacock is the Vahana (Vehicle) Of Goddess Saraswati, the controller of the pursuit of performing arts and also the vehicle of the Hindu God of War Lord Murugan, son of Lord Shiva and Parvati.
It is believed that peacocks had small tails but in a battle between Asura Ravana and Lord Indra the bird opened its feathers to hide Lord Indra. After defeating Ravana, Lord Indra granted the peacock a long tail.
They are also associated with Lord Krishna as he always wears peacock feathers. Peacocks were an important symbol in Roman times too, most commonly representing funerals, death, and resurrection.
This came about when people noticed that peacocks’ feathers did not fade or lose their shiny luster and it was seen as a sign of immortality or resurrection. The cry of a peacock is oftentimes explained as a devil’s voice while being feathered like an angel.
Auphorie Mayura is galore of notes and none of them are feeble. As far as my experience goes with any Auphorie, the brothers who are the noses behind them can make things work like magic, a note as simple as Vetiver would also dance to a different tune when handled by the Aus.
Mayura takes its inspiration from India and the perfumers have well respected it by starting the top of the perfume with some Indian Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, and Tuberose. The middle is made of Rose, Oakmoss, Indian spices, Wormwood, and Amber with a base of Civet, Hyrax, Castoreum, Musk, Oud, Incense, Ambergris, Vetiver, Jatamasi, and Sandalwood.
The notes breakdown itself speaks how complex the fragrance is, one could dare to understand it but never succeed. When I first got my hands on it, I was unaware of its beauty and was certainly new to the house of Auphorie but everything I have tried from the house so far has been an absolute olfactory treat.
Their perfume bottles are very simple and their packaging is also very minimalistic but they don’t compromise on the ingredients that much is apparent. It is a very well blended Animalic and floral chypre.
The journey of Mayura starts with heavy doses of Jasmine and tuberose. Jasmine, while being an important note in perfumery it is a perfume in itself, rich, white floral with whispers of Indolic green character. Tuberose is just as mighty in this combination and rather more opulent when the Ylang Ylang joins in.
Ylang Ylang is a tricky note since its essence is based on what time of the day it was harvested, where it’s more powdery than narcotic. This is probably from the harvest which is also called complete harvest, Ylang Ylang from this harvest has all the facets of the flower and the result is powdery, and that matters a lot in Mayura since it’s a floral and animalic chypre.
The florals together give the perfume a very rich texture, bold and captivating, much like the bird when witnessed for the first time. In the initial moments of the fragrance, there are these flowers and hints of animalics but the middle which features rose was a bit difficult to identify while amber and oakmoss were present and easy to identify.
Even after a month of trying I haven’t been able to figure out all the notes but that’s also because I haven’t tried a few in their raw form.
The heart of Mayura is where the peacock decides to spread its feathers, in the wild this happens when the peacock wishes to attract the peahen for a romantic encounter and similarly, the fragrance would invite the wearer to get more intimate with it.
Oakmoss is an integral part of any chypre; in fact, my experience with chypres has not been so good because of the restrictions on their uses. I am not sure if Auphorie observes those rules but I found oakmoss here to be better than in a lot of chypres.
Another important aspect of any chypre is animalic notes, which is what the base of Mayura is all about. The base has a wide array of animalics that give the base of a perfume some fecal aspects but also a lot of beauty.
The florals witnessed on the top truly stand on the base of these animalics making it the perfume powdery, warm, and slightly balsamic at the final moments of its drydown. There are a few hints of Vetiver too, which gives it a more woody touch.
The ending moments of the perfume are when the sandal comes through and takes the weight of the entire perfume, the florals are still evident and the animalics too. The sandalwood only provides a soft touch to the drydown and maintains the beauty of the animalics and refrains them from smelling too fecal.
A peacock takes a lot of pride in itself and it’s evident when you witness them with your eyes, their walk says it all. In similar ways, Mayura from Auphorie also takes a lot of pride in its drydown and it should since it is different and one of the imperial and dauntless fragrances I’ve tried.
Its intricacy is its beauty and I decided to leave it at that after some tries only to realize that some perfumes are a mystery and to be kept that way.
Emrys Au and Eugene Au of the Auphorie perfumes are self-taught perfumers from Malaysia and the only two people in my opinion who could have done this bird justice while depicting it in the form of a perfume.
The two brothers have been making perfumes since 2015 and they hold on to using the most exquisite and natural ingredients while giving it some support with aroma chemicals.
Mayura is a perfect example of a chypre and it also connects the new to the old. People who have enjoyed the truest form of chypres can recollect their memories and the people who haven’t can enjoy the close reminisce of it in Mayura. It’s a work of art and a true chypre in my opinion.
A fragrance as complicated and complex as Auphorie Mayura is either a stroke of luck or it is born out of sheer passion, dedication, and love for the art.
Author of Scented Haven
Notes (as listed by the brand): Indian Tuberose, Indian Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, Rose, Davana, Masala (Indian Spice Mix), Oakmoss, Amber, Mysore Sandalwood, Oud (Agarwood), Incense, Ruh Khus, Jatamansi (Indian Spikenard), Civet, Castoreum, Hyraceum, Ambergris, Musk.
Note by the Editor: Mayura by Auphorie, a limited 2018 edition of 33% extrait du parfum is discontinued and vaulted. Please check out other Auphorie perfumes here.
Photos: Rajiv Burad, Unsplash, Pexels
Editing: The Plum Girl/Elena Cvjetkovic