How to Get Michelle Obama's Show-Stopping Inauguration Curls

Even with everything that happened during the January 20 inauguration — the swearing-in of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, two A-list celebrity performances, and a slew of high-octane fashion moments — there was one question I heard far more than any other: Who the hell did Michelle Obama's hair? The former First Lady's silky, bouncy curls were the center of attention across TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter, thanks to Yene Damtew. The hairstylist, who's worked alongside the Obamas for quite some time, just revealed how she achieved the look, which, much to my surprise, was achieved with a flatiron.

“Again, thank you for the love & kind words today. Here's a video to show how I achieve my signature, bouncy curls on a client at my salon,” Damtew captioned a video of herself styling a model's hair with a 1.25-inch flatiron. She places sections of hair (which appear to be about two or three inches wide) inside the flatiron, keeping the tool parallel to the ground as she twists it toward herself. While she does this, she takes the length of hair hanging from the bottom of the flatiron and loops it above and to the right of the rest of the hair.

The specific flatiron Damtew likes to use, as she later mentioned on Twitter, has been discontinued. She did, however, link to a similar one in the same size: Hot Tools Professional Wide Plate Digital Salon Flat Iron for Reduced Frizz. After every section is curled, Damtew rakes her fingers through everything, tousling it a little bit for good measure. 

So, if you've got a flatiron at home (and I know you probably do), you can have First Lady-worthy hair, too. Just be sure to have a heat protectant and some shine-inducing products at the ready. 

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