Former First Lady Michelle Obama kicked off her book tour Tuesday speaking with Ellen DeGeneres in Washington, DC.
Obama is promoting her new book titled, “The Light We Carry” where she candidly talks about her daughters and her time at the White House.
Michelle Obama told Ellen DeGeneres that she was afraid to wear her natural hair or get braids while she was First Lady.
“I would get my staff all worried, too. I was like, ‘I was thinking about getting braids,’” Obama said.
“That’s the African American experience… but women in offices that are worried, ‘Should I wear skirts? Should I wear pantyhose?’ I hate pantyhose,” she said.
.@MichelleObama: “As black women we deal with it, the whole thing about do you show up with your natural hair? … As First Lady, I did not wear braids. Being the first – yeah, we had to ease up on the people … I was like, it would be easier. Nope, nope. They’re not ready.” pic.twitter.com/HwGluEo9a5
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) November 18, 2022
The New York Post reported:
Former First Lady Michelle Obama is opening up about the pressures of playing it straight.
The mother of two, 58, revealed how she felt Americans “weren’t ready” for her natural hair as they were still “getting adjusted” to having a black first family in the White House.
She noted how she kept her mane straight as can be while living in la Casa Blanca.
While promoting her new book, “The Light We Carry,” the best-selling author recalled how she decided: “Let me keep my hair straight.”
“Let’s get health care passed [first]. They tripped out when Barack wore a tan suit,” she added, recalling the controversy then-President Barack Obama, 61, faced in 2014 when he sported the outfit.
“The great indignity, the scandal of the Obama administration,” she quipped. “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?’”
She even spoke about the instances when she would joke with her staff about changing up her look — adding that they would get scared.
The Chicago native continued: “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.”