I used to think that expensive curling irons and flat irons were just gimmicks but when I finally got myself a CHI flat iron, I can see why people are willing to fork out that extra money for it.

The Farouk CHI Turbo Flat Iron 2″ is extremely lightweight and it has a slightly longer, 360-degrees swivel cord to help it from getting all tangled up. The controls are placed on the outside for easy access and the velvet lining on its handles makes it really comfortable to grab onto and less likely to get your fingers burnt. The indicator light is located on the outside as well but the light itself is really crappy so it can be hard to tell if the flat iron is heated up or not.

Temperature-wise, there are two settings – low and high – with a range of 175F/80C to 356F/180C. I normally use the highest setting and it never takes more than half a minute for the flat iron to heat up completely.

I also love how how the 2″ plate allows me to work with more hair at a time. Five minutes is all it takes to straighten my long, Asian hair and most importantly, my hair is left looking shiny and smooth and it stays straight even until the next morning, which almost never happens with my other cheaper flat irons from Sally’s! Plus my hair never gets dry or damaged when I use the CHI Turbo, even without a heat protector.

Overall, this is a very user-friendly flat iron that is great for beginners and pros. I am proud to say I am now a CHI convert!

Celebrity hairstylist and founder of Kronos Hair products, Dusty Simington, has a rather interesting beauty philosophy that reminds me of a saying by Helena Rubinstein – “There are no ugly women, only lazy ones.” Dusty believes that “With all that information and technology out there, no one can look bad. People who do are simply stupid.” While some people might find that harsh, I think there is some truth to it.

I met Dusty at the Total Beauty Blog Summit 2008 where he gave us a brief introduction on his upcoming line of hair products and a few pointers for fall hair trends. I also pulled him aside for a quick interview just for you guys!

Held at Hollywood’s Kodak theatre on 15th November, the annual Victoria’s Secret fashion show finally aired on CBS last night. The models featured this year include regulars like Adriana Lima (she’s my FAVORITE!), Alessandra Ambrosio, Heidi Klum, Miranda Kerr, Selita Ebanks, Izabel Goulart, Karolina Kurkova, Marisa Miller etc while special guest performances include the reunited Spice Girls, Seal and Will.I.Am.

Beauty-wise, the look is *hot* as usual and this year it is all about a dramatic smoky eye, luxurious, sensual skin and fresh, flirty lips.

I went to Victoria’s Secret yesterday to check out their new Santa collection but ended up walking out with a few hair products from their So Sexy line. I got the Supersmooth Straightening Balm, Volumizing Shampoo and Conditioner for Fine Hair. All 3 for $21 – what a steal!

Let me start off with the shampoo and conditioner. Both products have been a rave for me so far. After using them once, I can already feel the difference. My hair appears softer, shinier and definitely bouncier. The smell is also fabulous and it lingers on for a long time. Every time I catch a whiff of it, I can’t help but go mmmmmm *lol* The shampoo, however, is pretty drying so you do have to follow up with the conditioner. I also really like the packaging. The tall pink bottle is just so cute and so VS!

As for the Supersmooth Straightening Balm, it is working just as great. I apply a dime-sized amount onto my hair and it looks just like the model’s on the picture on the right – straight yet full of volume. And the best part is, I do not even need a straightening iron and my hair stays that way for the entire day! Seriously how awesome and easy is that? I will definitely check out the rest of their products from this line.

Here are a few tips to help your hair stay healthy and frizz-free under the scorching sun.

* To prevent your hair from getting fried, apply a product with UV filter like Kerastase Soleil Voile Protecteur before you go outdoors.

* Use a deep conditioning treatment at least twice a week and remember to comb through your hair after you applied it so the product is evenly distributed. Leave on for as long as you can. Rinse off with cold water to help seal the hair cuticles and add extra shine.

* Avoid further damage by limiting the use of curling irons and straightener in the summer and remember to always use a heat protection product like Toni & Guy’s Iron-It Heat Defence Spray before you curl/straighten your hair.

* Apply a small amount serum on the ends for extra shine. I like John Frieda Shine Shock Leave-on Perfecting Glosser for Brunettes.

* Never tie your hair up in the same spot. It will put extra strain on your hair and cause breakage.

* Dry your hair by squeezing out the excess water with a towel instead of rubbing it.