Michelle Obama explains her hair change: ‘This is my midlife crisis, the bangs’

Just before Pres. Obama’s second inauguration, Michelle Obama did something really unfortunate (IMO). She dramatically changed her hair and got some tragic bangs. You know I love Michelle (and Pres. Obama), and I think MO is a lovely woman. But these bangs really do not suit her AT ALL. Even Karl Lagerfeld deigned to sniff at them, commenting that they “were not a good idea.” Pres. Obama even had to comment on them too, although he said he really liked them (but what else is he going to say?). So now FLOTUS is left defending her bangsy decision:

When you’re the First Lady of the United States, you don’t have many options if you’re looking to act on a midlife crisis.

So Michelle Obama did what any woman looking to shake things up (within Secret Servce-approved parameters, of course) would do: cut her bangs.

“This is my midlife crisis, the bangs,” Obama joked on The Rachael Ray Show. “I couldn’t get a sports car. They won’t let me bungee-jump. So instead, I cut my bangs.”

And unlike many midlife crises, this one has gotten a big thumbs up from her spouse. “I love her bangs!” President Barack Obama said shortly after she cut them on her 49th birthday. “She always looks good.”

Not that she needed her husband’s approval, of course; though President Obama may be the leader of the free world, his wife is strictly the boss of her own hair. “I can do this,” she told Ray, smiling and gesturing to her new cut. “This is all mine.”

[From People]

Michelle just turned 49 years old in January, so the whole “OMG, I’m turning 49, only one year left in my 40s!!” thing is a decent enough explanation. People do weird things when they’re bumping up against the big 5-0. It does seem like her hair might be one of the few things she has immediate control over, so maybe we could start thinking of the bangs as Michelle’s small revolution, her tiny pushback against being so over-analyzed and criticized.

…Or maybe she just wanted bangs. I don’t know. Maybe we’re overthinking this? Maybe she just tried something new and now she knows how she looks with them and she’s going to start the long process of growing them out. Poor FLOTUS.

Photos courtesy of WENN, White House Flickr page.

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92 Responses to “Michelle Obama explains her hair change: ‘This is my midlife crisis, the bangs’”

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  1. Sal says:

    I think they look great on her.

    • Sandy Pandy says:

      I think they look great on her too. It’s just hair. When I turned 50 I had a tummy tuck and breast lift. If my hair was straight, maybe bangs would have been a cheaper option LOLL.

    • Azurea says:

      I love them on her. Much better than the starched- looking upsweep off her forehead that she had previously.

    • Jasmine says:

      I think she looks amazing with them!

  2. faun says:

    I can’t STAND Michelle Obama but I do love her bangs.

    • Janet says:

      I feel exactly the opposite. I love Mrs. Obama but I can’t stand her bangs.

    • Suze says:

      I love her and I love her bangs.

      I think they make her look younger.

      And she doesn’t owe anyone an explanation about them.

    • Laura says:

      How could anyone dislike Michelle Obama? Are you one of those people who are upset she’s trying to make American kids less fat?

      • MaiGirl says:

        IKR? I mean, I’m a Democrat who didn’t really care much for Laura Bush, but I would never say I can’t stand her. I just don’t care enough, and she was never that objectionable!

      • lisa says:

        i really dont understand the fan girl fascination with her. she’s just sort of there not interesting to me one way or the other. but her legions of stalkery fans are really annoying and could easily push people into disliking MO by proxy.

  3. T.C. says:

    I love her bangs. She looks younger and very cute with them. She shouldn’t have to explain why she got them. If someone doesn’t like them too bad. Go FLOTUS.

  4. aims says:

    I don’t have anything bad to say about the bangs. But I love the Obamas, so my perspective is biased.

  5. Bird says:

    She looks great. She’s awesome.

  6. bondbabe says:

    Just like I said when this so-called “tragedy” (insert eye-roll here) was posted in January–she did it because she turned 49.

    I completely understand (I will be turning 50 in a few month); you start reflecting more and more and want to make a change. But you’re limited as to what you can really shake up. Unfortunately for the First Lady, any thing she does is scrutinzed to the max.

    It will be interesting to see what you will do to shake things up a little, if anything, when you approach the mid-life years.

  7. Jayna says:

    I think she looks fantastic in the bangs and the blunt cunt and length of her hair.

  8. Hipocricy says:

    I prefer her sans bang because the bang makes her hair looking too wiggish.

  9. Eleonor says:

    That explains everything!

  10. annaloo. says:

    I liked the bangs! I had cut my bangs for the same reason, but I was debating botox vs bangs…Regardless, any way you look at it, she’s certainly one of the most dynamic FLOTUS we’ve had for American style.

  11. cw says:

    why did they vacation separately? any truth to that rumor about kerry washington?

  12. RHONYC says:

    this hair is more exciting than her old 1st term ‘Oprah/Claire Huxtable-esq’ hairstyle.

    good for her. she’s too young for that old school marm, fuddy-duddy hair. 😉

  13. BB says:

    Michelle Obama explains her hair change. Answer: Kerry Washington! Been wondering why she is not friends with Oprah anymore. Can’t stand her!( Michelle)

  14. Rococo says:

    I think what she means is this will have to make do as her mid life crisis because she isnt allowed to divorce Mr Obama yet…

  15. Meaghan says:

    I’m so sick of the anti-bangs stance here. I think they can work great on some people. And bangs look great on her. I think they make her look younger.

    • T.C. says:

      All bangs are poison on Celebitchy. I think Kaiser has some childhood trauma associated with bangs.

    • Pop! says:

      I agree! I have bangs, and i like them! They don’t work on everyone, but some people can wear them very well.
      Me thinks there were traumaticly too short/mom-cut bangs in many peoples past. The person who cuts the bangs makes all the difference. If they know what they’re doing, bangs are wonderful!
      I’ve had bad bangs. A woman once have me Tori Spelling’s 90s 90210 bangs.

  16. The Original Mia says:

    Yes, Michelle, we know.

    I hate those bangs, but much love for my FLOTUS!

  17. Samantha says:

    She looks better with the bangs.

  18. AmyLynne says:

    Why have a couple people been talking about Kerry Washington in these comments? Are they confusing television with real life or is there some actual gossip that I totally missed?

    • BB says:

      There’s an ongoing rumor that Michelle is jealous of Kerry Washington and the attention that the president is giving to her and how she banned her at the White House, copied her hairstyle etc. It’s just rumors but her hairstyle suspiciously looks like Kerry’s.

  19. dagdag says:

    I do not like her new hairstyle, in fact, I do not like most of her hairstyles. I am wondering, how would she look with short hair?

  20. Dinah says:

    I’m in the ‘meh’ camp on the bangs.

    She looks regal and gorge in the pic with Bo-‘bama, though.

  21. Auruor says:

    Kaiser, I think you just personally dislike bangs. And while that’s okay for you — it’s a personal preference — I think she looks AMAZING. The bangs really suit her, IMO. I’d love to have bangs like that!

    • Bitca says:

      In 30s n 40s w/nothing to hide? Then, bangs depend on facial structure. And on FLOTUS’ face, bangs look way sexier than some of her old Soccer-Mom stylings.

      Don’t love—but *like* the bangs. Not just because Michelle is my girl-crush, but had a bang-fixation in early childhood. Mom had to hide the scissors, ’cause if I found a pair, would end up with a fringe.

      Viewing pics from my youth, can state without bias (at the time thought I was tragically plain) that the bangs were cute; plus they covered a multitude of chocolate-related sins.

      MObama can get away with almost any look—including bangs. Also, if you don’t like the way a cut turns out, hair grows in a lot faster than Botox & Restylane seep out 🙂

  22. blonde on the dock says:

    The dog is adorable!

    • Emma - the JP Lover says:

      @Blonde on the Dock …

      Bo ‘is’ cute, but he looks like he’s three-kinds of crazy. 🙂 The First Lady said once while addressing some kids at a school that Bo is ‘crazy!’ She said he likes to chew on shoes.

  23. Chrissie says:

    I actually really, really like her bangs! I think they soften her face and hide her really harsh overplucked eyebrows.

    • lucy says:

      She definitely has “harsh overplucked eyebrows”, but I prefer seeing them to these heavy bangs.

      I’m with Karl Lagerfeld on this one.

  24. Reece says:

    I wasn’t sure at first but I like them now.
    C’mon Kaiser you can’t possibly like the hair in the last pic over the bangs? At least the bangs are FLOTUS with a personality hair. The other is awful “I’m FLOTUS so I’m going to look like this generic picture of FLOTUS because I’m dead inside and have no thoughts of my own” hair. It’s Robot FLOTUS hair! Also, it’s as poofy as Bo’s hair.
    The bangs are much better.

  25. Mayday says:

    I think they soften her face and make her look years younger.

  26. TheOriginalKitten says:

    She looks great, with or without bangs. Also, her arms & shoulders are effin’ AMAZING.

    • Agnes says:

      I KNOW, she’s ripped, isn’t she? I wonder how much she works out. I wish I had the dedication, I’d love to look like that.

    • Emma - the JP Lover says:

      Her skin is amazing too! Black women usually do have smooth skin, but her skin has a shinny healthy glow I would do a lot to have.

  27. Jen says:

    I cannot stand her. Ugh.

  28. Agnes says:

    Love FLOTUS and love her bangs – they’re a nice change. And it’s only hair – it’ll grow out. 🙂

  29. snark says:

    Why are we pretending that this is her real hair?!

    • lw says:

      I agree that its a wig. And I also think itwas a mistake. But I’m also anti bangs for the most part. And what’s worse is that everyone is jumping on the bangs bandwagon. I can’t think of one celeb that it favors. Jessica Biel? Keri Washington? Leanne Rimes? Kelly Osborne? No, no, no & no.

    • GG says:

      That is her REAL hair, hater.

      • Alicia says:

        Why is someone classified as a hater for stating it is a wig? And for the love of God, why are we still talking about her bangs?

  30. BB says:

    + that!

  31. Thiajoka says:

    I’m down with the bangs.

  32. anonymous fan says:

    Yep that is a wig.I totally understand why she got it though.When black women over process our hair too much as she has been doing for years then you need to let your scalp take a break by either wering a wig or getting braids.But it is a great wig.Very expensive and fitting.It looks good on her,bangs and all.

  33. Marie Antoinette Jr. says:

    I think the bangs make her look cute. But I’m not sure “cute” is the look she should be going for as FLOTUS; partly because there are so many official photos and portraits that stick around for (hopefully) hundreds of years.

    Personally, I would want to be remembered as classic and sophisticated, not cute and trendy.

  34. april says:

    She was on the nightly news last night on ABC and her hair was slightly shorter all over and the bangs were shorter. It looked SOO much better.

    I love Michelle and now love the new bangs.

  35. KellyinSeattle says:

    I agree that the bangs suck…..but it’s her hair and she’s under such scrutiny. I love the pics of them dancing and the one of him kissing her; they still seem in love. I do think her underbite is unattractive, though, sorry.

  36. blonde on the dock says:

    She’s a handsome woman, not pretty or beautiful. He’s the cute one!! He looks like he would be good in the sack.

  37. RHONYC says:

    my colleague has a wood for Michelle in that red gown like some dudes have for Maxim girls.

    like, seriously…i caught him tearing out that picture from a magazine and pocketing it. 😆

  38. supervisor says:

    she can’t fix ugly.

    • GG says:

      She is a Harvard educated First Lady of the USA, with countless of fans. She is a beautiful woman ,only a dirty rotten teeth white trash would call this amazing woman ugly.

      • snark says:

        Wow, racist much? I don’t think because you disagree with someone you need to stoop to such prejudice.

      • Auruor says:

        I’m with GG on this one… that is uncalled for and ridiculous. There’s nothing ugly about her. And she’s not a politician. Lay off her.

    • Cecada says:

      …But is there any hope for your tragic case of Stupid?

  39. Nicole Ocean says:


  40. Pop! says:

    that is a terrible thing to say. Her teeth are nice and straight. She has an underbite, so what.
    that wasn’t even snark-funny. That was just plain mean, imo.

  41. TrustMeOnThis says:

    LOVE them, but oh how I wish they wouldn’t drink Dasani.
    Dasani water comes from India. They are taking water from India – where people need it – depleting the water table, and shipping it overseas. Shipping of liquids is very inefficient because water is so heavy. So people in India are being deprived of water that belongs there and ships are burning diesel fuel so that Americans can drink bottled water. The only thing worse is Fiji water. Fill up your nalgene at the tap!

    • Emma - the JP Lover says:

      @TrustMeOnThis …

      (Blinks) Sorry, but Dasani is the bottled purified water produced by Coke (Coca-Cola), just like Aquafina is the bottled purified water produced by Pepsi.

      Nice try, though.

      • The Original Mia says:


      • ataylor says:

        Thank you for clearing that up. I almost literally had a heart attack. Literally. (I’m picky about my water — don’t ask)

      • TrustMeOnThis says:

        You’re right, it’s FILTERED water they are stealing from India. I’m not saying it’ll make you sick, I’m saying it’s environmentally stupid to drink it. And your local tap water is probably fine, or put an in-line filter in. But don’t be taking it from other people and shipping it halfway across the world.

    • Jenny says:

      Dasani IS tap water. It’s just filtered in many different ways and it definitely is not imported to US from India. Maybe you are thinking of another brand??

      • Jenny says:

        Just to make sure my memory served I did a little research: Dasani is tap water from the area of each bottling facility in the US (many around the country). I’m not sure why you think they would import tap water from India when there is cleaner and more abundant tap water here, although many spring waters are imported.

  42. Dizzle says:

    A true beauty regardless of hairstyle.

  43. Ally8 says:

    Bangs are the French Botox. Most older French women don’t inject poison into their foreheads to cover the lines, they grow out their hair. I recommend it.

    That said, the bangs don’t have to be straight down and all the way across. A wide side part works, too.

    • ataylor says:

      I would have preferred longer, side-swept bangs for the FLOTUS. These seem a little harsh and choppy. She does not have a Tyra Banks-esqe forehead to need such a blunt style of “banginess.”

      • Jenny says:

        I actually have side swept bangs right now and I think it’s a look that works on many many women. They’re not at all bad to grow out either.

        The only bangs I HATE are the super short, weird bangs that only belong on pixie cuts; those must be a real nightmare to grow out.

  44. crab says:

    Bahahaha!! Love it!!

  45. Cecada says:

    Um… I actually had a pretty wild time in my midlife. I won’t go into details, but instead of bangs I got a bong. I figured why not. I got whatever wild streak I had left out of my system. I have no regrets and now I’m fully engaged with my 50’s and happy as a clam. Never been more comfortable in my own skin.

    Just sayin’ – wild women need a little something MORE than a haircut at midlife!

  46. lisa says:

    it’s the least flattering haircut she could have. the sooner it grows out the better.

  47. Laura says:

    I don’t like her or her husband but I think she looks fantastic.