Michelle Obama Scores 3rd Vogue Cover, Talks 3 Qualities Every Outfit Absolutely Needs

Photo: Courtesy of Annie Leibovitz/Vogue.
We're definitely going to be missing the iconic, often unexpected style choices Michelle Obama has brought to the FLOTUS fashion canon come January. Luckily, we're being treated to some new fashion-centric tidbits about the inspiring first lady during her last couple months in the White House. First, we got some insights from Michelle's stylist Meredith Koop, about why the past eight years of FLOTUS looks have involved a number of smaller, emerging designers. Now, MObama covers Vogue's December issue, clad in a gorgeous ivory Carolina Herrera gown.

She's an old hand at what's still arguably the ultimate newsstand coup: This is her third cover for the publication in the past seven years. Inside the glossy, she talks through a savvy trifecta of criteria that guide her stellar outfit selections.

Firstly, comfort is key. We can fully get behind that style-guiding principle, but when you're the first lady, it's because meeting myriad people from all walks of life, all the time, is part of the job. "It all boils down to comfort level: If I’m going to make you comfortable, then I have to be comfortable first," Obama told Vogue's Jonathan Van Meter.

Photo: Courtesy of Annie Leibovitz/Vogue.
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And while the cache of a designer name isn't what drives the first lady's fashion choices — "my first reaction isn’t, ‘Who made this?’" she explained — there are talents she gravitates to, and for good reason. FLOTUS filter No. 2, which is to care about the people behind the clothes as much as the clothing itself. "There are definitely designers that I love, people I love to work with," she told the magazine. "And who they are as people matters. Are they good people? Do they treat their staff well? Do they treat my staff well? Are they young? Can I give them a boost?"

As for the last tenet of Obama's style playbook: If the clothing is comfortable, and you're down with the folks who made it, it has to, of course, look damn good. "When all of that is equal…is it cute?!" she told the magazine. Because you and Michelle apparently have more in common when looking into the mirror, mulling over a potential outfit, than you probably thought. (Minus the stylist and the whole FLOTUS power and all.) Check out the issue when it hits newsstands on November 22.
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