US 20030111090 A1
A sheet of composite material for use in a process of treating hair with a treatment solution. The sheet includes a first layer formed of a first material, and a second layer formed of a second material. The two layers are co-extensive with one another such that each has a peripheral edge extending substantially adjacent the other. At least one of the first and the second layers is chemically resistant to the treatment solution.
1. A sheet of composite material for use in a process of treating hair with a treating agent, said sheet comprising a first layer formed from a first material and a second layer formed from a second material, at least one of said first and said second materials being chemically resistant to the treating agent, and said first layer having a first peripheral edge and said second layer having a second peripheral edge extending substantially adjacent said first peripheral edge and together forming a sheet peripheral edge.
2. A sheet of composite material according to
3. A sheet of composite material according to
4. A sheet of composite material according to
5. A sheet of composite material according to
6. A sheet of composite material according to
7. A sheet of composite material according to
8. A sheet of composite material according to
9. A sheet of composite material according to
10. A sheet of composite material according to
11. A sheet of composite material according to
12. A sheet of composite material according to
13. A sheet of composite material according to
14. A sheet of composite material for use in a process of treating hair with a treating agent, said sheet comprising a first layer formed from a first material, and a second layer substantially co-extensive with said first layer and formed from a second material, at least one of said first and said second materials having a dead fold property.
15. A sheet of composite material according to
16. A sheet of composite material according to
17. A method of treating a lock of hair using a treating agent, the method comprising the steps of:
providing a sheet of composite material;
positioning a first portion of said sheet adjacent the lock of hair;
applying the treating agent to at least a portion of the lock of hair; and,
covering the treated lock of hair with a second portion of said sheet of composite material;
said sheet of composite material including a first layer formed from a first material and a second layer formed from a second material, at least one of said first and said second materials being chemically resistant to the treating agent, and said first layer having a first peripheral edge and said second layer having a second peripheral edge extending substantially adjacent said first peripheral edge and together forming a sheet peripheral edge.
18. The invention of
19. The invention of
20. The invention of
 This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/341,893 filed Dec. 19, 2001, the entire disclosure of which is hereby incorporated herein by reference.
 This invention relates to the art of hair treatment products and, more particularly, to wrapping sheets for use in hair treatment processes, such as coloring and highlighting, that provide both the folding and sealing benefits of wrapping sheets made from aluminum foil as well as the corrosion resistance and reusability of wrapping sheets made from polymeric film, while minimizing the material and manufacturing costs traditionally associated with single-layer foil or film sheets.
 BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 Hair treatment wrapping sheets have been provided heretofore, and generally are comprised of a rectangular sheet of aluminum foil or polymeric film. Numerous other shapes have been used, however, and, as such, are known to those skilled in the art. Furthermore, wrapping sheets of either material may be colored to provide the practitioner with the ability to identify areas of the hair that are being treated with different hair colors or to different degrees of treatment.
 During a hair treatment process, a wrapping sheet is positioned adjacent a lock of hair that is to be treated, typically underneath the lock of hair and at the root of the lock near the scalp. A chemical agent or treatment solution is then applied to the lock of hair. The wrapping sheet is then folded around the outside of the lock of treated hair in a manner that both contains the lock and the harsh chemical agent thereon, and also keeps the wrapping sheet fixed in place on the lock of treated hair. It will be appreciated that the treatment process may take several hours to complete and, therefore, the folded wrapping sheets must be securely fixed in place to prevent inadvertent dislodgment as the practitioner performs the treatment process on the remainder of the person's hair. It will be further appreciated that it may be desirable to have different locks of hair treated in different amounts or with different colors. In such situations, colored wrapping sheets may be used to differentiate between treatment areas. Finally, once the treatment process has been completed, it is desirable to have the wrapping sheets release from the location in which they are secured without damaging the treated locks of hair. The treating agent is then rinsed away, and the hair styling completed.
 Aluminum foil wrapping sheets are well known in the art of hair care products, and have certain benefits and advantages over comparable polymeric film wrapping sheets. One primary advantage is the ability of aluminum foil to be easily bent or folded around a lock of hair, and to maintain that bent form indefinitely. This is sometimes referred to as dead bend ability. An additional advantage is the excellent thermal or heat transfer properties of aluminum foil wrapping sheets.
 As would be expected, however, aluminum foil wrapping sheets also have numerous disadvantages. One significant disadvantage is cost. Aluminum, as a raw material, is relatively expensive when compared to most commonly available polymeric materials. Furthermore, due to manufacturing limitations, aluminum foil must be produced with significantly greater thickness than is otherwise desired for the present application. Aluminum foil readily tears during slitting, rewinding, and other manufacturing processes causing significant down time for production machinery, and causing inefficiencies in the manufacturing process. To minimize such manufacturing losses, aluminum foil wrapping sheets are regularly made from aluminum foil that is significantly thicker than is necessary for the hair treatment processes in which the wrapping sheets are used. The heavier gauge material is less likely to tear, wrinkle or otherwise jam the production machinery thereby reducing the manufacturing related losses. Additionally, to provide colored wrapping sheets, prior to the slitting, rewinding and other processes, the aluminum foil must be put through an anodizing bath or a solvent or aqueous based coating process. These are complex, time-consuming and expensive processes that add further cost to the already relatively expensive aluminum foil wrapping sheets. Furthermore, aluminum foil wrapping sheets tear relatively easily during application in the hair treatment process. Moreover, the aluminum foil wrapping sheets can only be used once because they wrinkle easily and, therefore, cannot readily have the treating agents from the previous use removed. The result is an undue waste of the relatively expensive aluminum foil wrapping sheets.
 Similarly, wrapping sheets made of polymeric film have both advantages and disadvantages. One advantage is that polymeric film wrapping sheets are relatively inexpensive to manufacture, and the sheets are generally made from common plastic material which further reduces the expense of the overall product. Additionally, the polymeric film is easily colored for providing the practitioner with the ability to differentiate treatment areas. Furthermore, the plastic materials generally used have a high degree of corrosion resistance to the harsh treatment chemicals that are used to color or highlight hair.
 Wrapping sheets made from polymeric wrapping film also have some significant disadvantages. Chief among these is that polymeric film has no dead fold ability. In fact, such plastic materials generally have a memory that causes them to unwrap or unfold from the locks of treated hair after application thereto. Furthermore, the plastic wrapping sheets are generally quite smooth. This is a significant advantage for cleaning and re-use, but the polymeric film wrapping sheets become slippery in the presence of the chemical agents, and, therefore, less effective in forming seals around the treated locks of hair. And, the polymeric film wrapping sheets easily stretch and puncture making it even more difficult for the practitioner to work with these products.
 In accordance with the present invention, a sheet of composite material is provided which avoids or minimizes the problems and difficulties encountered in connection with wrapping sheets of the foregoing nature while maintaining a desired simplicity of structure and promoting a reduction of material usage and an economy of manufacture.
 A sheet of composite material is provided for use in a process of treating hair with a treating agent. The sheet includes a first layer formed from a first material and a second layer formed from a second material. The first layer has a first peripheral edge, and the second layer has a second peripheral edge extending substantially adjacent the first peripheral edge. The first and second peripheral edges together form the peripheral edge of the sheet. At least one of the first and second materials is chemically resistant to the treating agent.
 Another sheet of composite material is provided for use in a process of treating hair with a treating agent. The sheet includes a first layer formed from a first material, and a second layer substantially co-extensive with the first layer and formed from a second material. At least one of the first and second materials having a dead fold property.
 Additionally, a method of treating a lock of hair using a treating agent is provided. The method includes the steps of providing a sheet of composite material, positioning a first portion of the sheet adjacent the lock of hair, applying the treating agent to at least a portion of the lock of hair, and covering the treated lock of hair with a second portion of the sheet. The sheet of composite material includes a first layer formed from a first material and a second layer formed from a second material. The first layer has a first peripheral edge, and the second layer has a second peripheral edge extending substantially adjacent the first peripheral edge. The first and second peripheral edges together form the peripheral edge of the sheet. At least one of the first and second materials is chemically resistant to the treating agent.
 FIGS. 1-3 illustrate a person undergoing a hair treatment process using wrapping sheets such as those known in the art.
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional side elevation view of a laminated wrapping sheet in accordance with the present invention.
FIG. 5 is an exploded, partial cross-sectional side elevation view of the laminated wrapping sheet shown in FIG. 4.
FIG. 6 is a diagram illustrating various forms of wrapping sheet that may be produced from the laminated wrapping material shown in FIG. 4.
FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional side elevation view of a laminated wrapping sheet in accordance with the present invention.
 Referring now in greater detail to the drawings, wherein the showings are for the purpose of illustrating preferred embodiments of the invention only, and not for the purpose of limiting the invention, FIGS. 1-3 illustrate a person undergoing a hair treatment process, such as highlighting or coloring. Such hair treatment processes are well known and typically include the use of a wrapping sheet made from aluminum foil or polymeric film. As such, wrapping sheets made from either a single layer of aluminum foil or a single layer of polymeric film are known to those skilled in the art. FIG. 1 shows a lock of hair HR that has been selected for treatment. An aluminum foil or polymeric film wrapping sheet SH is positioned underneath the lock of hair, such that one end of the sheet is adjacent the scalp. A brush BR or other applicator is then used to apply the treatment chemicals or solution to the lock of hair HR. As is shown is FIG. 2, after the treating agent has been applied, the wrapping sheet SH is folded over the treated lock of hair to prevent the treating agent from inadvertently spreading to other portions of the hair or to the person's skin, both of which are undesirable results. This process is repeated until the treatment process is complete, as shown in FIG. 3.
 Wrapping sheets SH of the foregoing nature may also be available in a variety of colors. The color is visible on at least one side of the sheet, and during the application of the wrapping sheets to the treated hair the colored side may face away from the lock of hair such that the numerous wrapping sheets form color coded treatment areas. As described hereinbefore, these color coded treatment areas are desirable for treating different areas of the person's hair with different colors or to different degrees of treatment.
 It will be appreciated that in addition to being folded over as is shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the wrapping sheets used in the treatment process are often folded together along both the side edges and the end edges to form a fluid-tight packet that has the treated lock of hair inside. As such, aluminum foil is often preferred over polymeric film in such treatment processes. Polymeric film has memory and, therefore, relies on “cling” to maintain the folds that form the fluid-tight packet. Packets made from polymeric film often come unfolded or are insufficiently secured to the lock of hair causing them to become dislodged from the treated lock of hair. This is especially true when the sheet of film has become covered with treating agent. The aluminum foil wrapping sheets, on the other hand, have a dead bend ability (not shown) that is preferred because it forms and maintains creases or folds, and thus remains securely in place on the treated lock of hair.
 Shown in FIG. 4 is composite wrapping sheet 10 having a plurality of laminated layers of material. The substrate layer 12 is a metal foil, preferably an aluminum alloy, and a film layer 14 is a polymeric film layer, preferably a polyolefin based polymeric material, and more preferably a polyethylene or polypropylene based polymeric material. Interposed between the two layers 12 and 14 is an adhesive layer 16. In the present embodiment, the adhesive layer 16 is applied to the substrate layer 12, and the film layer 14 is thereafter laminated to the substrate layer, as shown in FIG. 5, to form the composite wrapping sheet material of the subject invention. However, it will be appreciated that any suitable manufacturing method can be used.
 Another embodiment of the wrapping sheet 10′, as shown in FIG. 7, includes a second film layer 14′ on the other side of the substrate layer 12, opposite the film layer 14, and supported by a second adhesive layer 16′. This embodiment may be constructed in a manner consistent with that described above or other methods of manufacture known to those skilled in the art.
 It will be appreciated that regardless of construction, each layer of material will preferably be substantially co-extensive with the other layers of material in forming the composite sheet. As such, the peripheral edge of each sheet will generally be formed by the peripheral edges of the various layers. In certain situations, manufacturing or other issues, such as material shrinkage, for example, may tend to draw the edges of one or more layers slightly back from the peripheral edges of other layers. However, the layers will remain substantially co-extensive with one another, and the respective edges thereof will remain substantially adjacent one another.
 The substrate layer 12, as discussed above, is preferably a metal foil, and more preferably aluminum foil. The foil should have a thickness of between 0.0001 and 0.015 inches, and preferably between 0.00025 and 0.001 inches. Furthermore, the aluminum foil may be formed from any one of numerous aluminum alloys, including 1100 class, 1200 class, 1300 class or other alloys. In the present embodiment, the substrate layer 12 is aluminum alloy foil that has a thickness of about 0.00035 inches.
 The film layer 14, as discussed above, is preferably a polymeric material, and more preferably a polyolefin based polymeric material, such as a polyethylene or polypropylene based polymeric material. The polymeric material should have a thickness of between 0.0005 and 0.015 inches, and preferably between 0.001 and 0.005 inches. In the present embodiment, the film layer 14 is a polyethylene-based polymeric material having a thickness of about 0.0015 inches. The film layer may be transparent or opaque and further may, in either condition, be colored with a suitable pigment or colorant. As such, the laminated wrapping sheet 10 can be colored without resorting to expensive and complex anodizing or coating processes, including solvent and aqueous based coating processes, necessary to color single-layer aluminum foil wrapping sheets.
 The adhesive layer 16 can be made from any solvent-free or solvent-based, water borne laminating adhesive, sealant or coating suitable for joining the plurality of layers. It will be appreciated that laminating adhesives, as well as laminating equipment and processes, are well know to those skilled in the art and, as such, will not be discussed hereinafter.
 It will be appreciated that for the purposes of illustration, the layers of laminated material are shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 7 as having an exaggerated thickness, and that the drawing figures are not representative of the scale or proportion of the individual layers relative to one another. It will be further appreciated that the relative thickness for each of the layers may be varied from those discussed above without departing from the principles of the subject invention, and that other such embodiments have been contemplated and are intended to be included within the scope of the present invention.
 It will be further appreciated by those skilled in the art that the wrapping sheet 10 may be used in the same manner described above with regard to FIGS. 1-3. The preferred use, however, includes the additional step of orienting the wrapping sheet such that the film layer 14 is in contact with the lock of hair HR, with the substrate layer 12, therefore, facing away from the lock. The wrapping sheet 10 is then folded over in the above-described manner to secure the wrapping sheet to the lock of hair, preventing the lock and the treating agent thereon from contacting other segments of hair or the person's skin. The application of the treating agent and wrapping sheets is then repeated until the hair treatment process is completed. In the orientation described above, the film layer 14, which may be colorized, of the wrapping sheet 10 is folded in toward the inside of the wrapping sheet. However, it will be appreciated that, if colorized, the colorized layer will still be seen on the interior of the folded wrapping sheet, and along the edges of the sheet in situations where the side edges and end edges are folded over to form a fluid-tight packet. Even if the wrapping sheet 10 is not used with the film layer 14 facing the lock of hair HR, the practitioner will still get the beneficial use of identifying various treatment areas by using the color coded wrapping sheets in accordance with the present invention. It will be further appreciated that if colorized, the wrapping sheet illustrated in FIG. 7 may include two colorized film layers on opposite sides of the substrate layer. And, the two colorized layers may have different colors, providing the practitioner with two different colored wrapping sheets from the same box of wrapping sheets or the same roll of wrapping sheet material.
FIG. 6 illustrates the various forms into which the composite material of the subject application can be made. A bulk roll 30 of laminated material can be die cut into individual wrapping sheets 32 of various shapes and sizes. As stated above, one advantage of the composite wrapping material is that it does not require a tissue interleave between each individual sheet. The film layer of plastic material prevents the foil surfaces from contacting one another and becoming “welded” together. As such, the composite wrapping material can be processed on drum and shear equipment without requiring a tissue interleave for that or further processing. What's more, the bulk roll can be processed using a high-speed sheeter to form sheets 34 of wrapping material, and again, such sheets do not require a tissue interleave for further processing. Additionally, the bulk roll can be fed through a high-speed slitter and re-winder to form small rolls 36 that can be used by practitioners to cut varying lengths of wrapping material as individual applications require. In both of the latter cases, the composite material that includes the thin 0.00035 gauge aluminum foil can be processed using “high-speed” equipment. The same gauge of single-layer aluminum foil wrapping sheet material could not be processed on such equipment due to the tearing, wrinkling and puncturing that results. As such, production is increased, while losses due to scrap are reduced.
 Various advantages and benefits of the present invention have been discussed above. One such advantage is the provision of wrapping sheets having the dead fold characteristic of a metallic foil and the lightweight, re-usability and chemical resistance attributes of a polymeric film all in one product. The laminated wrapping sheet material maintains the outstanding holding properties of metallic foil without the need for predetermined fold lines, and even with reuse of the wrapping sheets. Additionally, by positioning the polymeric layer adjacent the lock of hair, the composite material provides the desired sealing capabilities of metallic foil without the potential damage to the hair that may result from the contact with the metallic foil. Furthermore, the composite wrapping sheet material maintains the corrosion resistance of the polymeric film providing a foil-backed, polymer laminated material having a greater range of chemical compatibility with the organic solvents and caustic agents used in hair treatment processes than single-layer aluminum foil. Further still, the polymer lamination keeps residual rolling oils from the aluminum foil manufacturing process from directly contacting the hair. As discussed above, these characteristics are not available in wrapping sheets made from single-layer metallic foil or polymeric film.
 Another advantage of the composite wrapping sheet material is that the metallic foil and polymeric film are complementary with regard to tearing, puncturing and stretching. The metallic foil provides resistance to the puncturing and stretching inherent in polymeric film, while the film minimizes tearing of the metallic foil. Additionally, the polymeric film can be easily colored. As a result, the overall composite wrapping sheet material can be colored without subjecting the metallic foil to an expensive and time consuming anodizing or coating processes. It will be appreciated that a colored polymeric film may be applied to both sides of the metallic foil, and may further have different colors on one side and the other. This advantageously provides the practitioner with increased color options without increasing the overall supply of colored wrapping sheets.
 An additional advantage of the composite metallic foil and polymeric film construction is that while single-layer metallic foil cannot readily be reused, the layer of polymeric film in the wrapping sheets provides a smooth surface that is readily cleanable and as such can be repeatedly reused. Furthermore, the thermal and radiant properties of single-layer metallic foil are maintained by the metallic foil layer of the laminated construction.
 A further advantage of the laminated construction is that the composite material can be processed using high speed slitting, rewinding and other manufacturing equipment, whereas very thin gauges of single-layer aluminum foil typically cannot. Generally, single-layer aluminum foil can only be processed using such high speed machinery if it has a sufficiently thick gauge to prevent tearing, wrinkling and jamming of the aluminum foil as it moves through the processing machinery. As such, the aluminum foil currently used for hair treatment wrapping sheets is significantly thicker than the application actually requires causing increased production costs of the resulting wrapping sheets. With the composite material of the subject invention, the metallic foil can be of a very thin gauge, and because of the laminated layer of polymeric material, the overall composite material can still be processed using high speed manufacturing equipment resulting in a reduced production cost for the composite wrapping sheets due to the reduction in metallic material used while maintaining the use of the high speed production equipment.
 Another advantage of the metallic foil and polymeric film laminate construction is that the polymeric layer separates the metallic layers. As such, adjacent wrapping sheets will not “weld” together so the need for interleaved tissues is eliminated. Furthermore, the inclusions or other surface imperfections that often result from the foil manufacturing processes do not cause interference with or damage to the other stacked wrapping sheets made from the composite material due to the polymeric layer that separates the metallic layers.
 While considerable emphasis has been placed herein on the materials, construction, and material interrelationships between the features of the embodiment disclosed, it will be appreciated that other embodiments of the invention can be made and that many changes can be made in the embodiments illustrated and described without departing from the principles of the invention. For example, the composite construction may include additional layers to provide other functions or characteristics, such as a binding layer to improve the lamination between the film and substrate layers or may include a second polymeric film layer opposite the first film layer, the metallic foil may be made from copper or some other metal rather than aluminum, or the film layer may be a material other than a polyolefin-based polymeric material. Obviously, additional modifications and alternations will occur to others upon reading and understanding the preceding detailed description. Accordingly, it is to be distinctly understood that the foregoing descriptive matter is to be interpreted as merely illustrative of the present invention and not as a limitation. As such, it is intended that the invention be construed as including all such modifications and alterations insofar as they come within the scope of the claims and the equivalents thereof.