We all sometimes think that our jobs are demanding. It’s the reason why we book regular vacations and want to relax at the weekend. However, while our jobs might put the pressure on, we could never compare them to running one of the most prestigious and challenging offices in the world.
Serving as President of the US, whether it be for one or two terms, is a huge commitment that demands every ounce of one’s attention and energy – and, that of the staff for the times when the president would rather sit in bed with a McDonald’s takeaway instead of running the country.
Naturally, when someone focuses every part of their minds and souls on the plight of other human beings, natural disasters, impending doom as well as their own personal problems, it has a considerable effect on their body. From grey hairs to deep wrinkles, these photos of former Commanders-in-Chief prove that there’s a price to pay for being among the most significant people on Earth.
Barack Obama (2008-2017)
When Barack Obama first took to the Oval Office in 2009, he used to be a vision of youth. At 47-years-old, he was a stark contrast to his predecessor, George W. Bush. However, the strain of eight years sitting behind the Resolute desk became distinctly visible when Obama, the first black president, stepped down in 2017.
George W. Bush (2000-2008)
When Bush was sworn in, he used to be the spitting image of his father who had held the same office eight years prior. However unlike his father, Bush went on to secure two terms as president, that evidently took their toll on the Texas-native.
Only eight months into his first term, the promising president faced one of America’s worst atrocities when the 11/9 attacks claimed the lives of approximately 3,000 citizens. That, combined with the chaos caused by Hurricane Katrina as well as the “Great Recession”, saw Bush leaving the Oval Office looking exhausted.
Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945)
Roosevelt was president at a time when America experienced great strain as World War II, and the Great Depression were threatening to push the country into complete turmoil. Serving four terms in office (he tragically died 11 weeks into his fourth term after his health severely deteriorated), Roosevelt was one of America’s most famous presidents with both historians and citizens of the time.
Bill Clinton (1993-2001)
When 46-year-old Bill Clinton entered the White House back in 1993, he was already sporting a head of grey hair. However, eight years running the country – the latter of which also being marred by the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal – we saw deep wrinkles appearing over the Arkansas-born president’s face. In spite of the controversies which were associated with his name, Clinton is still considered to be one of the highest rated presidents the US ever had.
George H.W. Bush (1989-1993)
Before Clinton, George H.W. Bush, the father of George W. Bush, ran the US. Despite being 64-years-old when he entered the White House, he looked relatively youthful. Nevertheless, four years running America would change that. Still, despite the evident effect that his four years as Commander-in-Chief had, George H.W. Bush is currently the eldest living former president of the US at 93-years-old.
John F. Kennedy (1961-1963)
Many people argue that the key to Kennedy’s presidential win was his good looks. Indeed, at 43-years-old he was one of the youngest presidents ever to be sworn in, so his youth had a large part to play in his following success.
Alas, Kennedy’s turbulent time in office ended in disaster when he was famously assassinated in Dallas in 1963. Still, the effect of his two years and ten months as President of America were telling on his famed good looks.
Gerald Ford (1974-1977)
Gerald Ford might only have served for 2 years and 5 months, and mostly because of a complete fluke (he became Richard Nixon’s Vice President for 8 months after the resignation of Spiro Agnew and then became president when Nixon resigned in 1974), but this short time considerably aged the Nebraska-born president.
Richard Nixon (1969-1974)
Nixon, the only president to ever resign, is perhaps one of America’s most famous leaders, unfortunately for all the wrong reasons. Despite the fact that he ended the war in Vietnam and successfully brought home American prisoners of war, while also he instigated a missile treaty with the Soviet Union and presided over the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing, Nixon’s tenure as president will be mostly remembered for the Watergate scandal. No wonder why he suddenly looked so old when he stepped down.
Harry S. Truman (1945-1953)
Truman was the only world leader who has used nuclear weapons during in a war, which unsurprisingly changes an individual, as his before and after pictures show!
Ronald Reagen (1981-1989)
Ironically, as a star of the silver screen, Reagen was always expected to look his best. However, as President of America, his sleek style was soon to be forgotten. During his first term, he had to contend with an assassination attempt that came scarily close to claiming his life. Still, that didn’t stop him from running again. He’s now considered one of the United States’ most successful presidents.
Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961)
Eisenhower’s two turbulent terms in office might not have stopped him from smiling, but it certainly changed something in his appearance.
Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)
Lincoln is one of America’s most popular presidents, iconically responsible for abolishing slavery. However, being held in high regard didn’t take the apparent strain off of the 16th President of the US. Assassinated just one month and ten days into his second term, his time in the White House was cut unforgivably short.
Lyndon B. Johnson (1963-1969)
LBJ entered the White House after the assassination of John Kennedy in 1963. His rocky start was followed by the escalation of the Vietnam War, the “War on Poverty” and mass riots throughout America from those who opposed the country’s involvement in South-East Asia. With all that taken into consideration, it’s no surprise that Johnson looked tired by the end.
Herbert Hoover (1929-1933)
Less than eight months after he assumed office, the Wall Street Crash of 1929 knocked Herbert Hoover to the curb. As the country spiraled deeper and deeper into the Great Depression, Hoover, who had little prior political experience, tried to fix the problem. His efforts were unsuccessful, and a weary-looking Hoover was later succeeded by Roosevelt.
Jimmy Carter (1977-1981)
Carter might have come into the presidential race as a dark horse candidate. However, he proved his power by beating Gerald Ford in a close election. Although his one term was dubbed fairly below-average by historians, his worn face shows the signs of a person who worked extremely hard.