In this segment of episode 204, meet First Lady Michelle Obama’s make-up artist, Derrick Rutledge. Derrick has worked with Oprah Winfrey, Patti LaBelle, Yolanda Adams & more famous faces. Lawrencia Dandridge introduces us to the man who has the honor of making Michelle Obama look so glamorous. And we’ll find out first hand what it’s like to work at the White House.
Oprah & First Lady Michelle Obama’s Make Up Artist – Episode 204 (part 2 of 4)
Derrick starts by telling us: “First of all, you know that you go in there, you hear everything, you see everything, you speak nothing, and that’s the reason that I’ve gotten to the level of where I’ve gotten to.”
And when it comes to beating faces, no one beats the faces of the famous better than Derrick Rutledge.
Rolanda Watts: “He’s doing the first lady of talk, and of the country”
Omarosa: “I knew Derrick before he blew up and I got blessed to have Derrick touch my face at a very young age.”
Kim Whitley: “I went from looking like a man, to looking like America’s Next Top Model.”
From Patti LaBelle to Yolanda Adams. From Oprah Winfrey to Michelle Obama, Derrick has painted the faces of some of the world’s most admired women. He’s part of the “East Wing Team” keeping the First Lady looking oh so fabulous. No pressure there, right?
Derrick: “You know I was scared because you’re working with the most powerful person in the world and it made me nervous. But because she’s got such a wonderful and warm spirit, she pulled me in and treated me just like I was her brother.”
Not bad for this D.C. native, who grew up with dreams of performing in the opera.
Derrick: “Things didn’t work out because my voice teacher told me because of my weight I wouldn’t make it as an opera singer.”
“So, I started taking photography, which led me to be doing make up for my models… while at BET I met a lot of celebrities…. and from there, I just started getting work thru those celebrities… and it led me to bigger celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey and our First Lady.”
But growing up as an overweight child in the nation’s Capital didn’t make Derrick very popular. He painfully recalls being subjected to humiliation from bullies at school.
“I was 600lbs…people talked about me, spit on me, and I still smiled and pursued and I never let it stop me and from that, I believe that God has opened up doors that allowed me to experienced what I have experienced today.”
“I present the Global Award to Mr. Derrick Rutledge…”
And now doors continued to open for Derrick — this time in Hollywood, when a few celebrity friends came out to support him for the launch of his cosmetic and beauty line called, “Ooooh.”
Kim: “He has the biggest, kindest heart, he is such a good friend…”
Omarosa: “He is such an anointed person, he’s a good friend…”
Rolanda: “I think it says a lot about his character, I mean not just anyone gets to touch the First Lady’s face… And to be loyal and to keep secrets, and to be able to support her when she’s had a rough day, and to let her know that she’s not alone.”
Today, Derrick says he is about 100 pounds away from his ideal weight. He praises Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” fitness campaign for helping him to get closer to his goal and living his best life.
Derrick: “I realize that by working with the First Lady…I got a trainer that I work out with every day and with that, it’s making me a more happier person and a more rounded person… I’ve never been in a relationship, and that was because I didn’t like who Derrick was. Now that I’m liking who Derrick is, I’m more open to look for that special person.”
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