Michelle Obama Reveals Why She Didn’t Wear Braids During Her Stint As Former First Lady

Michelle Obama Reveals Why She Didn’t Wear Braids During Her Stint As Former First Lady

As Michelle Obama continues her national 13-night tour to promote her new book, “The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times,” she talked about her hair journey during her White House stint. The sold out talk was moderated by Ellen DeGeneres.

On Tuesday during an appearance at the Warner Theatre in Washington, Obama, wearing beautiful braids, opened up the pressure she felt to keep her hair straight as Americans were “getting adjusted” to having a Black president.

“We deal with it — the whole thing about, ‘Do you show up with your natural hair?’ ” Obama stated. She also said that wearing straight hair would help Americans deal with other issues than how she looked—even though that was picked apart regardless.

At the time, Obama thought: “Let me keep my hair straight. Let’s get health care passed.” She also shared what she believed her critics would say if she opted to wear a natural hairstyle. “Remember when she wore braids? Those are terrorist braids! Those are revolutionary braids!” the former First Lady remarked.

Six years after her and Barack left the White House, she is proudly rocking braids. Halfway through her interview with DeGeneres, she exclaimed “Braids, y’all!” and received applause from the crowd.

“The code of ethics at a workplace, as Black women we deal with it, the whole thing about do you show up with your natural hair? We gotta ease up on the people. They tripped out when Barack wore a tan suit. The great indignity, the scandal of the Obama administration!” Obama joked.

Ultimately, she knew with such visibility would result in a lot of unwarranted scrutiny. “But when you’re carrying all this other stuff, this mask, these differences and you’re trying to do your job, it’s just an extra burden on overcoming,” she told DeGeneres.

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