President Obama Gets Real About Body Image

His comments about the FLOTUS's figure are amazing...

Body positivity is not a subject you expect a politician to get passionate about on camera. But when US President, Barack Obama did just that, it really was the best kind of surprise.

At the end of February Obama and prima ballerina Misty Copeland (the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in the American Ballet Theatre’s history) discussed race, gender issues and success with TIME reporter Maya Rhodan.

One of the most striking moments in the filmed interview was when Obama talked body image. It was so refreshing because he made it personal – talking about the experiences of his wife and children.

When quizzed by TIME about whether, as a father of two daughters, he is aware of the pressures women face to conform to a narrow beauty ideal, Obama acknowledged “The enormous pressure that young women are placed under in terms of looking a certain way. And being cute in a certain way. And are you wearing the right clothes? And is your hair done the right way.”


Obama went on to say: “that pressure I think is historically always been harder on African American women than just about any other women. But it’s part and parcel of a broader way in which we socialise and press women to constantly doubt themselves or define themselves in terms of a certain appearance.”

And the President had this to say about his wife Michelle Obama, and her importance as a role model for their daughters:

‘The fact that they’ve got a tall gorgeous mom who has some curves, and that their father appreciates, I think is helpful.’

Hell yeah it is! This is candid stuff you don’t expect the president of America to spill…


Obama went on to acknowledge that a broader representation of beauty is finally emerging (thanks to well-known women like Misty) and that young people have a more diverse spectrum of beauty to identify with than when he was a kid.

With Obama tackling such great topics, with such openness, it’s almost easy to forget some of the other anti-women happenings that candidates like Donald Trump are trying to bring to the fore. Yeah, almost.

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