Rihanna's not having those hair-raising unnatural colors applied to her own locks -- but you knew that, right?

You will if you stop by Jon Charles' Uptown salon.

Charles just got back from Las Vegas, where he attended an owners' exchange that included one of Rihanna's short wigs as an auction item. "I would have bid up to two grand on it, that's how bad I wanted it," said Charles, who had to pay only $700. "I wasn't going to leave Vegas without it.

"I put my general manager on it and my inside connection with Oribe [the hair world icon] on it. I said, 'Stand there -- I want that wig. Whatever I need to pay to get this, get it.' It went to a great charity, which is cool. It's on a little head stand that Oribe signed.

"I have the picture inside the April 2011 issue of Vogue where she's wearing it. When you see the wig you'll know it's the wig in the picture, but you can see how they Photoshopped the color of it," said Charles.

Photoshopping the color of the reddish, deep purple wig for the magazine kind of underscores how we live in a world where reality is never perfect enough.

Charles is using Rihanna's wig as illusion control in a continuing client-education campaign.

The lesson?

"One of the reasons I bought it is that a lot of women have on weird wigs in magazine shoots. Customers come in to me and say, I want that color, and I say, 'It's a wig.' And they go, No, Jon, it's not. I say, 'In this other recent picture her hair is 3 inches long. Now it's below her shoulder. Miracle growth pills? Just can't happen,'" he said.

It's a relief to know that Ri-Ri's garish red hair is a wig. If she did this to her real hair it might fall off her head.

"Rihanna's got great hair, thick hair, but she's a rock star," said Charles. "She needs to have purple hair every once in a while. But she is also a businesswoman," and she's not going to do business in a colorful wig "because she might look kind of silly."

TV commercials and print ads often feature people claiming a product has made an incredible difference in their hair, even though they are not even wearing their own hair at the time. One glaring example -- at least in my opinion -- is the Garnier HerbaShine commercial with a black chick who seems to be sporting some Asian woman's hair while speaking the line: "Amazing color that's actually good to my hair." (You can see this at www.startribune.com/a462.)

After viewing the commercial on YouTube, Charles said, "It's a weave or a wig, no doubt about it. Remember when Cher did the ads? She was the spokesmodel [for a line of hair care products] and everybody, for sure self-respecting gay men, on Earth knows Cher has wigs. And you don't use shampoo on a wig. You use wig cleaner. There is nothing wrong with a wig. That's cool."

Expect to see this Rihanna wig next week when her "Loud" tour stops by Target Center, where Jon Charles staffer Christy Leaks plans to wear it. Another employee, Kirill Blazhnov, a man whose own hair is as lush and perfect as any wig, playfully modeled Rihanna's wig for my photo, using an "Umbrella" prop. More polite than a prop inspired by her current "S&M" tune or her recent, highly controversial release, "Man Down."

Robyne's looking good

Speaking of hair, readers keep asking if I've seen former Fox 9 anchor Robyne Robinson lately.

I have not, but two people I know have seen her within the past couple of weeks and report that she looks fabulous. Not working agrees with her.

Robinson is scheduled to do some emcee work at the "North Side: A Twin Cities Community Benefit," which is Sunday -- not another date previously reported by me.

"My mistake in the news release," wrote Martin Keller of Media Savant Communications.

The sage's e-mail featured two different dates. I didn't see the correct one; only the incorrect one -- boldfaced and in bigger type after "WHEN" -- which naturally caught my eye!

C.J. is at 612.332.TIPS or cj@startribune.com. E-mailers, please state a subject -- "Hello" doesn't count. Attachments are not opened, so don't even try. More of her attitude can be seen on Fox 9 Thursday mornings.