Why Michelle Obama Changed the Dress Code for White House Butlers

Why Michelle Obama Changed the Dress Code for White House Butlers
Michelle Obama. Kristin Callahan/ACE Pictures/Shutterstock

Incredible! As if we couldn’t admire her anymore, Michelle Obama made a major — and empowering — dress code change while living in the White House.

During her new Netflix documentary Becoming, the former first lady admits that after moving into the White House she decided to ditch the butler’s tuxedos. When she was visiting Laura Bush for the handover, she couldn’t help but notice that most of the butlers were African American and Latino men in these uniforms.

“I didn’t want [my daughters] thinking that grown African American men serve them in tuxedos. The truth was that some of those men were uncles, they were the Pullman porters,” she explained. “We had to change the dress code, you can’t walk around every day in a full tuxedo. Girls would have pool parties and playdates and little kids over and that just doesn’t even look right to me.”

Why Michelle Obama Changed the Dress Code for White House Butlers
The Obama family in 2013. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP/Shutterstock

As it turns out, though, that wasn’t all the “Becoming” author changed. She also claimed that she had to “beg” the housekeepers not to make Sasha and Malia’s beds. “These girls have to learn how to clean their own rooms and make their beds and do their laundry because they will not live here forever and I’m not raising a girl who doesn’t know how to make their own bed.”

Obama spent a lot of time thinking about how she would make the “mansion” into a nice home for her two little girls and all of these adjustments were a part of that plan.

The 90-minute documentary, which airs on Netflix today, Wednesday, May 6, follows the former FLOTUS around as she promotes her book and retells touching stories of their presidential experience.

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