Mai and Ty Lee have been friends since they were children. They were mutual friends through Azula and attended the Royal Fire Academy for Girls together. They have very opposite personalities with Ty Lee being cheery and bubbly while Mai is gold and reserved. Still, the two got along very well. There was one point when Ty Lee played along with a prank by Azula after they noticed that Mai had a crush on Zuko. She laughed when Zuko tackled Mai and got her wet. She was not amused by this.
Years later, Azula recruited Ty Lee and Mai to help her capture the avatar. Ty Lee immediately hugged Mai when she saw her and Mai was surprised to see that she left the circus. The two commonly fought side-by-side in battle. When Zuko was escaping from the Boiling Rock, Mai betrayed Azula and helped Zuko get away. Azula was angered and was about to attack her until Ty Lee intervened and chi blocked her. The two were then imprisoned until the war ended.
Mai Lee is a somewhat popular ship in the Avatar fandom but it is not as popular as Tyzula. Some fans prefer to ship Mai and Ty Lee together because they got along better and did not try to manipulate each other like Azula did. There was also the factor of the both of them betraying Azula and the fact that Ty Lee saved Mai's life. Mai Lee commonly rivals the Tyzula and Maiko ships.
- Ty Lee has described Mai's aura as being gray while describing her own aura as being pink.