A Look Back at Michelle Obama's Best Beauty Moments Over the Years
Michelle Obama has been setting the internet ablaze as she continues on her "The Light We Carry" press tour. With each engagement, fans of the former first lady have noticed how everything from her fashion choices to her hairstyles have been a bit more laid back and trendy, which is a departure from Obama's usually more classic and formal looks.
Part of this transformation has been intentional on Obama's part. At a speaking engagement in November, she revealed that she wanted to experiment with her hair during her time in the White House but ultimately decided not to. "I did not wear braids," Obama said at the event. "Yeah, we had to ease up on the people." She further elaborated on her point during a conversation with Revolt, adding that she then decided to stick to straight hairstyles during that eight-year period. "I wore weaves, extensions, protective styles, because you get your hair done every day and sometimes twice a day. I would not have any hair on my head if I straightened it as much as I had to straighten it."
Though this chapter is seemingly marking a new beginning in Obama's beauty journey, she has always been a source of inspiration for makeup, nail, and hair looks, particularly for Black women. From the classic bob she often wore at the beginning of the Obama presidency to the soft, monochromatic makeup looks that she showed up in during official engagements, she is and has always been a force to be reckoned with in the beauty space. Should you need further proof, we went ahead and gathered some of Obama's best beauty moments over the years for your viewing pleasure (and Pinterest-board needs).
Keep reading for all the beauty inspiration you'll need heading into the new year.
Michelle Obama's Monochromatic Pink Makeup
While Obama admittedly took fewer beauty risks before and during her time in the White House, she always seemed to have an appreciation for more classic beauty looks. Case in point? This monochromatic pink makeup that she sported in 2004.
Michelle Obama's Soft Updo
Back in 2009, during a celebration of country music at the White House, Obama wore a tucked-under updo that was equal parts soft and elegant but also fun. The hairstyle was a great way to experiment with shorter styles, which she would be seen in just a few years later.
Michelle Obama's Monochromatic Blue Eyeliner
Fashion and beauty often go hand in hand, and nowhere is that more apparent than with a monochromatic moment. During a formal White House event in 2010, Obama wore a subtle navy-blue eyeliner that perfectly matched her shimmering dress in the same shade.
Michelle Obama's Milk-Bath Nails
In addition to the orange blush and glossy lip that she wore to a state dinner in 2011, Obama was also spotted in a gorgeous milk-bath manicure for the occasion. With the nail look currently sweeping Hollywood as we speak, it's safe to say she was ahead of her time.
Michelle Obama's Layered Bob
Another classic beauty moment was Obama's layered bob during the Democratic National Convention in 2012. The look was piecey and curled to perfection.
Michelle Obama's Money-Piece Highlights
For a speaking engagement commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington in 2013, Obama stepped out with caramel money-piece highlights. Her hair was styled into her then-signature bob, and she wore light makeup to finish off the look.
Michelle Obama's Blunt Bangs
At the 2013 Kids' Inaugural: Our Children, Our Future event, Obama revealed a hairstyle that she doesn't often wear: blunt bangs. The cut ended right below her eyebrows and was accompanied by an equally blunt bob.
Michelle Obama's Lob Hairstyle
Obama is also a fan of the lob hairstyle. For a virtual appearance at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards, she wore the style with curled ends and a middle part.
Michelle Obama's Beige Nails
Minimalist nails go with any look, and Obama proved that fact earlier this year. She wore a trendy beige manicure color with a pearlescent finish (which perfectly matched her trench coat) to the 2022 When We All Vote Inaugural Culture of Democracy Summit.
Michelle Obama's Bronzed Chrome Nails
Chrome nails are in this year, and Obama seems to be well aware of the fact. While a metallic silver is typically the finish you will find all over your For You page on TikTok, Obama stuck with a more bronzed variation of the nail look, which doubled almost as a nude shade.
Michelle Obama's Green Eyeshadow
With the denim eyeshadow trend in full swing, there's no doubt that other eyeshadow colors are about to have their moment in the sun, too. Obama is one step ahead of the game and wore this green smoky eye, which simultaneously matched her velvet suit.
Michelle Obama's Braided Ponytail
Obama has been experimenting with quite a few braided hairstyles during her "The Light We Carry" tour, and this braided high ponytail is just the latest example. Ahead of an event with Oprah Winfrey on Dec. 14 this year, Obama was spotted in the hairstyle, which was void of any additional accessories. To complete the look, the ends of her hair were used to wrap around the base of the ponytail and keep it in place.