US 20040256283 A1
A reusable personal-care kit is provided that is compact, lightweight, organized, and restockable. A preferred embodiment of the reusable personal-care kit invention includes a cover, a foldable carrier forming a plurality of pouches capable of carrying personal-care products, with the carrier connected to the cover, and at least one personal-care product sachet removably held in at least one of the pouches.
1. A reusable personal-care kit, the kit comprising:
a foldable carrier forming a plurality of pouches capable of carrying personal-care products, the carrier connected to the cover; and
at least one personal-care sachet removably held in at least one of the pouches.
2. The kit of
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9. A reusable personal-care kit system, the system comprising:
a foldable carrier forming a plurality of pouches capable of carrying personal-care products, the carrier connected to the cover;
at least one personal-care sachet removably held in at least one of the pouches; and
a dispenser capable of storing personal-care product sachets.
10. The kit of
11. The kit of
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17. A method of carrying personal-care products, the method comprising the steps of:
providing a reusable personal-care kit comprising:
a cover; a foldable carrier forming a plurality of pouches capable of carrying personal-care products, the carrier connected to the cover; and at least one personal-care sachet removably held in at least one of the pouches;
removing at least one of the personal-care sachets for use; and
restocking the personal-care kit by inserting at least one replacement personal-care sachet in at least one of the pouches.
18. The method of
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 The present invention relates in general to personal-care kits and more particularly to a portable lightweight kit for repeatedly carrying mono-doses of consumer products such as cosmetics and toiletries and other personal-care items.
 In today's fast paced and mobile world, many people are often away from home on a near daily basis and need personal-care products available. Whether a person is at the gym, athletic club, spa, on a day or weekend trip, or on a longer adventure, it is a common desire to have personal-care products readily at hand. It is also desired to reduce the “luggage” carried when away from home. It is further desired to carry the personal-care products without leakage and in an organized manner for quick access.
 Heretofore, these desires have not been satisfied except by the most prepared and organized of individuals. First, reduced sized containers of personal-care products are often hard to locate. Second, resealable containers often leak, especially in air travel. Next, it is difficult to maintain the varying size and type containers in an organized and compact manner. Many of these reduced sized containers are not transparent, and therefore may often result in the unpleasant occasion of opening the container to find that there is no personal-care product contained. One common way to address the above desires has been to contain one's personal-care products in a rib and groove, resealable plastic bag. This method of storage and organization at least contains any leaked product within the sealed bag. However, the leaked material also coats all of the other items contained in the sealable bag.
 Attempts to solve the above problems have been addressed with limited and often relatively expensive results. Prior art solutions include a booklet having a foldable interior section. Sections of the booklet having a mono-dose packet of a personal-care product attached by an adhesive. These prior art booklets are not reusable, thus requiring the purchase of a new booklet for each use even if all of the supplied product has not been used. An additional drawback to these prior art booklets is their limited use. For example, a booklet may only contain facial products and ignore hair care products. Additionally, these prior art devices cannot be personalized for each individual user.
 It is thus a desire to provide a reusable personal-care kit that overcomes the drawbacks previously described. It is a further desire to provide a reusable personal-care kit that is compact, lightweight, and can be individually personalized. It is a still further desire to provide a reusable personal-care kit that includes pouches for repeatedly holding personal-care sachets. It is a still further desire to provide a reusable personal-care kit that may carry non-sachet personal-care products.
 In view of the foregoing and other considerations, the present invention relates to travel kits.
 It is a benefit of the present invention to provide a compact, lightweight, reusable personal-care kit.
 It is a further benefit of the present invention to provide a reusable personal-care kit that includes pouches for repeatedly carrying mono-dose personal-care product sachets.
 It is a still further benefit of the present invention to provide a reusable personal-care kit that can be individualized by a user.
 Accordingly, a reusable personal-care kit is provided that is compact, lightweight, organized, and restockable. The reusable personal-care kit preferably includes a cover, a foldable carrier forming a plurality of pouches capable of carrying personal-care products, with the carrier connected to the cover, and at least one personal-care product sachet removably held in at least one of the pouches.
 The reusable personal-care kit may have various types of personal-care product sachets contained in the various pouches of the carrier. Each pouch may also contain one or more personal-care product sachets. Larger capacity reusable personal-care kits may also include longer and/or additional carriers.
 Personal-care sachets may be obtained in various manners from various sources to restock the reusable personal-care kit with desired personal-care products. It may be desired to obtain personal-care sachets from a dispenser that may be kept at home or the office for quick and easy restocking. An example of a dispenser that may be utilized is described in U.S. Pat. No. 4,382,526.
 The reusable personal-care kit may also be adapted for carrying non-sachet personal-care products including nail files, nail clippers, combs, eyeliners, massacre, lip stick, calling cards, and other types of emergency-use cards or membership cards. These non-sachet personal-care products may be held in the pouches of the carrier, or connected by an attachment mechanism to the cover. A preferred attachment mechanism is by cutting parallel, spaced lines along the cover to form a loop by one section of the cover. Other mechanisms such as, but not limited to, elastic loops, pockets, and the like may be utilized.
 It may also be desired to close the cover about the carrier to reduce the size of the personal-care kit. It may further be desired to close the cover about the carrier to prevent any loose personal-care products, whether sachet or non-sachet, from being separated from the reusable personal-care kit. Various mechanisms for closing the cover around the carrier may be utilized.
 The reusable personal-care kit may also include other information displayed in the form of indicia on the carrier or cover. The indicia may include, but is not limited to, advertising, information about personal-care products, travel tips, time zone information, and travel phone numbers. The indicia may define spaces for filling in individual user information.
 The foregoing has outlined the features and technical advantages of the present invention in order that the detailed description of the invention which follows may be better understood. Additional features and advantages of the invention will be described hereinafter which form the subject of the claims of the invention.
 The foregoing and other features and aspects of the present invention will be best understood with reference to the following detailed description of a specific embodiment of the invention, when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the reusable personal-care kit invention shown in an open position;
FIG. 2 is an isometric view of a preferred embodiment of the reusable personal-care kit invention shown in a closed position; and
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a sachet dispenser of a preferred embodiment of the present invention.
 Refer now to the drawings wherein depicted elements are not necessarily shown to scale, and like or similar elements are designated by the same reference numeral throughout the several views.
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the reusable personal-care kit of the present invention shown in an open position, generally designated by the numeral 10. Reusable personal-care kit 10 includes a cover 12, a personal-care product carrier 14, and personal-care product sachets 22.
 Cover 12 is desirably constructed in the form of a book cover having a spine 16 interconnecting a front board 18 and a back board 20. Cover 12 as shown is constructed of a plastic such as, but not limited to, polypro polyvinyl chloride. However, cover 12 may be constructed of other material including paper, card stock, fabric, and leathers.
 Personal-care product carrier 14 includes a plurality of pouches 24 adapted for reuseably carrying personal-care products, which are generally designated by the numeral 22. Pouches 24 are specifically adapted for carrying at least one personal-care product sachet 22. Personal-care product sachets 22 are desirably mono-dose containers of personal-care products such as, but not limited to, shampoo, hair conditioner, hair styling products, colognes, cleaning wipes, facial products, lotions, powder, and vitamins. Each sachet 22 is sealed to prevent leakage and preserve the contained product. Pouches 24 may also hold other non-sachet personal-care products 22 a such as, but not limited to, eye makeup, nail clippers, tweezers, nail files, varying types of credit cards and prepaid cards, containers of vinegar, and the like.
 Personal-care product carrier 14 is an elongated member foldable in an accordion fashion along transverse sides 30 forming a plurality of sections 26. In this detailed description, personal-care product carrier 14 is constructed of a heavy paper material. However, other materials of construction may be utilized. In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, alternating sections 26 form pouches 24.
 Carrier 14 is divided into multiple sections 26. In the preferred embodiment, carrier 14 is divided into six sections designated as 26 a, 26 b, 26 c, 26 d, 26 e, and 26 f. Each of the sections is divided from the others by transverse side 30. Each transverse side 30 is also an axis for folding carrier 14. For structural support in a preferred embodiment, pouches 24 are formed by alternating sections 26. In a preferred embodiment, the first section 26 a forms a pouch 24 and the distal section 26 f, not directly connected to cover 12, does not form a pouch 24.
 A method of constructing a preferred embodiment of personal-care product carrier 14 includes the following steps: 1) folding an elongated sheet of material along a longitudinal axis forming closed bottom side 32, wherein the two edges 28 a of the material parallel to the longitudinal axis are substantially aligned; 2) adhering sides 28 perpendicular to bottom side 32 together; 3) dividing carrier 14 into several substantially equal area sections by transverse sides 30; 4) folding carrier along transverse lines 30 to further define sections 26; and 5) cementing carrier 14 together in a manner such that alternating sections 26 form pouches 24 that are substantially closed on three sides. In the preferred embodiment, six sections are formed-sections 26 a, 26 b, 26 c, 26 d, 26 e, and 26 f. Section 26 a is an end section forming a pouch and directly connected to cover 12. Section 26 f is an end section distal from section 26 a, and is closed so as not to form a pouch 24. Therefore, in a preferred embodiment, sections 24 a, 24 c, and 24 e form pouches 24, and sections 24 b, 24 d, and 24 f do not form pouches 24. The front 34 and back 36 of each section 26 may include indicia 33, and possibly designs to provide information and aesthetic value to reusable personal-care kit 10. Indicia 33 may include information such as a description and recommended method of use of personal-care products, product manufacturer information, advertising material, and spaces for an individual user to personalize personal-care kit 10 with desired information.
 Personal-care product carrier 14 is connected to cover 12 in a manner to be folded and contained within cover 12 to a position extending out from cover 12. As shown, personal-care product carrier 14 is connected along a back side 36 of a section 26 a to back board cover 20 by an adhesive. However, personal-care product carrier 14 may be connected to cover 12 in other locations and in other manners. For example, personal-care product carrier 14 may be removably connected to cover 12. Additionally, it should be recognized that personal-care product carrier 14 may be oriented in a manner to be extendable from cover 14 perpendicular to spine 16, as shown, or parallel to spine 16.
 Cover 12 may also include a closing mechanism 38 to enclose the folded personal-care product carrier 14 within cover 12 in a compact manner. Closing mechanism 38, as shown, includes a tab 38 a extending from a portion of cover 12 adapted for insertion into a slot 38 b formed on another portion of cover 12. Closing mechanism 38 may be formed in numerous alternative manners including, but not limited to, clasps, snaps, zippers, hook and loop, rib and groove, and ties.
 Reusable personal-care kit 10 may be adapted to carry additional non-sachet personal-care products 22 a that are not contained in pouches 24. FIG. 1 shows an eye liner 22 a held by an attachment mechanism 40, demonstrated by a loop, connected to cover back board 20 within cover 12. In a preferred embodiment, attachment mechanism 40 is a loop formed by cutting parallel, spaced lines in cover 12. Personal-care product 22 may include numerous types of non-sachet, personal-care products 22 a. Cover 12 may include attachment mechanisms 40 in various locations within cover 12 for additional storage of non-sachet personal-care products 22 a. Alternative attachment mechanisms 40 may be utilized.
FIG. 2 is an isometric view of a preferred embodiment of the reusable personal-care kit 10 invention shown in the closed position. Carrier 14 is folded and contains both personal-care sachets 22 and non-sachet 22 a personal-care products disposed within pouches 24. One of the sealed foil personal-care sachets 22 includes a shampoo and another one of the shown sachets 22 contains hair conditioner. The non-sachet personal-care product 22 a carried in a pouch 24 is a pre-paid calling card.
FIG. 2 additionally shows two additional non-sachet personal-care products 22 a carried by cover 12. One of the cover carried non-sachet personal care products 22 a is a nail clipper that is connected to an interior of back board cover 20. The other shown carried non-sachet personal-care product 22 a is eyeliner attached to spine 16 of cover 12. Each of the cover carried non-sachet personal-care products is removably held by attachment mechanism 40, which is shown as a loop formed by cutting parallel, spaced lines in cover 12. Attachment mechanism 40 may include other means of attachment including, but not limited to, elastic band loops, pockets, and the like.
 Reusable personal-care kit 10 is closed utilizing a closing mechanism 38. The closing mechanism 38 shown in FIG. 2 is that of FIG. 1 utilizing a tab 38 b and a slot 38 a. It is reiterated that closing mechanism 38 may include numerous manners of securing cover 12 in a closed relationship with carrier 14.
 Reusable personal-care kit 10 may be continuously reused by reloading with personal-care products 22. Reusable personal-care kit 10 may be continuously used with non-sachet personal-care products 22 a such as nail clippers and the like, and/or restocked with sachets 22 after each use. In furtherance of the convenience and ease of use, the reusable personal-care kit 10 may include a sachet dispenser.
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of a sachet dispenser of the present invention, generally designated by the numeral 42. Sachet dispenser 42 may contain individual sachets 22 for ejection through slot 44. An individual may maintain one or more sachet dispensers 42, each containing a personal-care product sachet 22. In this manner, an individual can dispense one or more sachets 22 to restock pouches 24.
 A manner of use of re-usable personal-care kit 10 is described with reference to FIGS. 1 through 3. A user obtains a reusable personal-care kit 10 containing a plurality of personal-care product sachets 22. Reusable personal-care kit 10 may be distributed as a consumer product and/or as a promotional item. The user utilizes some or all of the pouches 24 to contain at least one sachet 22, and may include more than one personal-care sachet 22 in a pouch 24. After each use, the user may obtain additional personal-care sachets 22 from dispenser 42 or other source for restocking in pouches 24. Reusable personal-care kit 10 may further include continuous use, non-sachet personal-care items 22 a. The present invention provides a compact, organized, reusable mechanism for carrying personal-care items.
 From the foregoing detailed description of specific embodiments of the invention, it should be apparent that a reusable personal-care kit that is novel has been disclosed. Although specific embodiments of the invention have been disclosed herein in some detail, this has been done solely for the purposes of describing various features and aspects of the invention, and is not intended to be limiting with respect to the scope of the invention. It is contemplated that various substitutions, alterations, and/or modifications, including but not limited to those implementation variations which may have been suggested herein, may be made to the disclosed embodiments without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims which follow.