Michelle Obama was known as a seriously fashionable first lady, but her style is still going strong since leaving the White House. Her family may have taken some well-deserved vacation time since Barack Obama’s presidency, but most of the former FLOTUS’ best outfits have been worn while getting work done.
From delivering inspiring speeches to encouraging students to stay in school, Obama has been bringing her A-game in style — all while making a difference. Here are 15 of her best looks since her days as first lady.
1. NYC streetwear
Obama looked chic and relaxed while leaving Upland, a New York City restaurant, where she and her husband enjoyed lunch with U2’s Bono in March 2017. We love how her blouse brings a pop of white into the overall black and gray color scheme, but it still ties in the darker hues at the top. Her gray coat is perfect for a rainy day in the city.
Next: She’s looking as poised as ever.
2. Making a public appearance
Making one of her first public appearances since her family’s exit from the White House, Obama didn’t fail to bring her style game. She delivered a speech at the American Institute of Architects in Orlando, Florida in April 2017, looking as poised as ever. Her asymmetrical black, white, and beige color-blocked dress by Lafayette is classy, yet a little more laid back for the former FLOTUS.
Next: She knows she’s looking good.
3. Taking care of business
Obama looked stunning in this black bell-sleeve dress with white polka dots. By the look on her face, she knew she was rocking it, too. She and her hubby were getting business done in Chicago, revealing plans for the Obama Presidential Center on May 3, 2017.
Next: Casual has never looked so put together.
4. College casual
We’ve never seen an all-gray outfit look so cool. Obama kept it casual while repping her alma mater, Princeton, at MTV’s 2017 College Signing Day on May 5, 2017. Her gray jeans, cardigan, and sneakers definitely look like her take on college fashion wear, and we’re loving it.
Next: She goes from casual to completely elegant.
5. Blue beauty
Just as quickly as Obama can get casual, she can bring out her best evening gown. She looked as stunning as ever in Boston, Massachusetts while the former president received the 2017 John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award. Standing by her husband’s side, Obama’s jewel-toned dress makes her look like royalty. She completed the look with matching drop-down earrings and a lovely updo.
Next: Not many could pull off this style.
6. Rocking a statement blouse
This is definitely a statement blouse if we’ve ever seen one. The dramatic high-low structure couldn’t be pulled off by many, but Obama rocks it. We love how she cinched her waist with a black oversized belt and tied the black in with her straight leg pants and pointed toe heels.
Obama had a busy May 2017, this time bringing her fashion taste to the Healthier America Summit in Washington, D.C.
Next: Italy brought out her best style yet.
7. Daring style in Italy
On a trip to Montalcino, Italy, Obama kicked her style up another notch. We can’t get enough of her one-shoulder look in a top by Teija, paired with her white jeans, sandals, and a Jimmy Choo bag. Her silver hoops and oversized sunnies definitely add an extra dose of cool factor.
Next: She plays with shoulder designs once again.
8. High-waisted goddess
Obama was looking like a goddess in these flowy, high-waisted olive pants. We’re loving the high-fashion, yet casual looks she brought out on her Italian trip — this time in Sienna. She played with shoulder designs once again in this white Club Monaco blouse. Her gold accessories were the perfect touch, but we especially love the contrast in color with her deep red handbag.
Next: You won’t believe how stunning she looked.
9. Asymmetrical and fierce
Only two words can appropriately describe Obama’s ensemble here: asymmetrical and fierce. Her black shoes and Cushnie et Ochs dress almost look like they came as a set, with fun angles complementing each other perfectly. She accessorized the look with two Hearts on Fire rings, reportedly worth over $20,000.
We’re sure she was feeling confident while presenting the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2017 ESPY Awards in July 2017.
Next: She’s looking stylish while standing up for women.
10. Ultra feminine
Obama was looking ultra feminine in this pink floral dress paired with white stilettos at TogetHER with The Women’s Foundation of Colorado. During this live conversation with the foundation’s CEO, Lauren Y. Casteel, Obama had an important message for women. According to The Denver Post, she “[urged] women to seize their power while not hiding their scars.”
Next: She put the perfect summer twist on this suit.
11. Inspiring style
During a July 2017 visit to Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C., Obama sent an inspiring message to its students. She even captured the moment on Instagram, writing, “I am so proud of you for beating the odds and getting the education you need and deserve.”
She brought her classic style while making a difference, giving her tan suit a stylish summer twist. Her white V-neck, cropped pants, and trendy sandals give business casual a whole new meaning.
Next: She looked nothing but classy.
12. Pinstripes in Pennsylvania
While in Philadelphia for the Pennsylvania Conference for Women in October 2017, Obama’s pinstripe style was nothing but classy. Her black and white midi dress was adorned with white buttons, adding a trendy pop in detail.
Next: This pattern definitely pops.
13. Experimenting with patterns
Obama’s wardrobe is definitely familiar with black-and-white patterns, and this Naeem Khan dress is no exception. This funky pattern might show that she’s experimenting a bit more with fashion now that she’s no longer the first lady, but the silhouette remains polished and professional.
And yes, that is David Letterman she’s sitting with onstage. They joined together in October 2017 for a Special Evening with Former First Lady Michelle Obama at The Streicker Center in New York City.
Next: Her fashion was definitely on point.
14. Pretty in plaid
Obama’s fashion was on point in this pretty plaid Preen by Thronton Bregazzi dress. We couldn’t think of a better shoe to pair with the dress, either, which include chunky high heels and a simple strap. She wore this look to the Obama Foundation Summit on Nov. 1, 2017, in Chicago, where she sat down with poet Elizabeth Alexander.
Next: She looked radiant in this black-and-white ensemble.
15. Modern elegance
Obama looked positively radiant between her husband and Chance the Rapper. The three joined together on the last day of the Obama Foundation Summit, where the former first couple spoke and Chance the Rapper performed, among a number of other headlining artists.
We can’t take our eyes off of Obama’s structured black tunic paired with her white top featuring unique ruffles. She looks comfortable, but brought her signature modern elegance to the stage.
Read more: Meghan Markle’s Best Style Moments
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