When I cast my vote for Barack Obama in 2008 (my first-ever ballot, I was 18 years-old), I didn't know the powerful, poised, driven, hilarious, and intelligent partner he was bringing with him. Over the last decade, Michelle Obama has become an unmatched role model—advocating for healthy families, higher education, and international adolescent girls' education. She defends love, human rights, acceptance, and hope. I can't possibly think of enough adjectives to do her justice.
Because I am a beauty editor, I can't help but also see her contributions through a beauty lens. As her hairstyles and makeup choices evolved, so did we. Women and girls of color finally had a powerful representative in the White House. FLOTUS's strength and impossibly toned arms were celebrated and coveted by all women. She made "being healthy" feel cool. For all of that and so much more, Michelle Obama is an icon. Keep reading to see her stunning beauty evolution.
When he was still Senator Barack Obama, Michelle addressed the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado. She went for a no-makeup makeup look with a feathery, bouncy cut.
In 2009, now First Lady Michelle Obama attended the Neighborhood Inaugural Ball in DC. Her hair was still above the shoulder and parted to side, showing off her toned shoulders.
In 2010 for a Cinco de Mayo reception at the White House, FLOTUS went shorter with a fresh, new bob and a festive pink gloss. (Sephora Collection's Ultra Shine Lip Gel in Bubble Gum, $12, is similar.)
Before dinner with Chinese President Hu Jintao, Michelle Obama showed off and awe-inspiring look. She went for a textured updo with slicked-back roots and her signature fresh, effortless-looking makeup.
That highlight, though. Michelle Obama stunned at the 2012 Governors Dinner with a voluminous hairstyle and the most expertly sculpted face we've seen to date.
At her second Inaugural Ball, FLOTUS showed off a new layered cut with a gorgeous fringe.
For her speech at the Anna Wintour Costume Center at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC, Michelle Obama worked in a few barrel curls and swooped her new bangs to the side.
While welcoming the Chinese President for a state dinner, FLOTUS was absolutely glowing, everywhere from her side-swept, long mermaid hair to her flawless skin.
During her final public remarks as the first lady, Michelle Obama really switched it up. She debuted a sleek, short, middle-parted bob that had us all running out to the salon. Nothing short of perfect, just like her public service.
Now is the time to get educated about your health. Make sure to read what the Planned Parenthood vote means for your access to birth control.