Friday, April 16, 2010

Michelle Rhee's signature look

You probably saw news coverage on DC Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee's recent labor contract proposal and how it might be paid for. But what you probably didn't see was a recent photo of her. I'm not sure why this is, but there are a lot of old file photos of her out there - you can see the length of her hair go up and down across newspapers, but you don't see a whole lot that's recent. So I went looking for something. Here's a speech she gave at the California Charter Schools Conference last month:

And you know what I noticed? She looks almost exactly the same as on her Time cover in November 2008:

Black suit

Dark lipstick

No jewelry

And very close variations on this look show up on all those file photos in between. It's a signature look, to be sure, but a rather severe one. She has a tough job and a polarizing persona that has nothing to do with how she looks. But if she's ever in the mood to take a more compromising stance, she's going to need to soften it up a bit. Even a switch over to a medium gray (a color that looks good on almost everyone) would be a start. The lipstick should really change in any case - a more sheer formulation in a classic red would do the trick, like Make Up For Ever in True Red 415.

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