US 20060021630 A1
A hair band (10) has an outer cover (12) and an inner core (14) contained within the cover (12). The cover (12) is in the form of a tube which is closed to form a loop. The cover (12) is preferably made of a fabric. The fabric may be elastic or inelastic.
1. A hair band comprising
an elastic inner band comprising polyurethane; and
a fabric cover surrounding said band.
2. A hair band according to
said inner band is generally flat in cross-section.
3. A hair band according to
said inner band is a closed loop.
4. A hair band according to
said fabric cover is a closed loop having a hollow interior such that said cover surrounds said band.
5. A hair band according to
the ends of said inner band are fastened to each other thereby forming a closed loop.
6. A hair band according to
said fabric cover is loosely arranged around said band in order to accommodate stretching of said band in a manner in which said band diameter is increased.
This application relates to, and claims priority from, U.S. Provisional Patent Application 60/592,250 filed 29 Jul. 2004, and hereby incorporates the same by reference.
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention relates to hair accessories and, more particularly, to an elastic hair band having an outer fabric cover and having an improved inner band or core.
2. Description of Related Art
Various hair accessories that are worn in the hair for functional and/or ornamental purposes, comprise one or more components that engage the hair by clamping, clipping, weaving, or other similar means. For example, an elastic hair band of the type generally known comprises a fabric cover forming a tube and being closed in the form of a loop. Inside the tube/closed-loop is an elastic core in the shape of a ring. The core material used in known devices is either a rubber band of natural rubber or an elastic band of a conventional type such as woven elastic or knitted fabric. Such conventional bands used as core material have shortcomings in terms of elastic memory or range of flexibility, and durability—resulting in various undesirable consequences such as difficulty in stretching, excessive tension on the user's hair, pulling out of the user's hair, and other inadequacies. The wear cycle of a knitted band is adversely affected by humidity, repeated use, chemicals applied to the hair, and other factors. Natural rubber cores have a tendency to drag the fabric cover into undesirable folds or pleats due to the friction between the rubber and the fabric. Thus, it is desirable to provide a way of overcoming such shortcomings.
The present invention provides a hair accessory of the type comprising an elastic band covered by a fabric and formed in a closed loop, wherein the elasticity characteristics are superior in range and durability, and friction in minimized between the core and the fabric. These and other objects are achieved by the present invention as described herein.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention, a hair band in the form of a closed loop having a fabric cover and an elastic band core in the shape of a loop utilizes a thermoplastic polyurethane tape as the elastic core.
The core (14) is made of a thermoplastic polyurethane tape of either transparent or colored appearance. Polyurethane tape having elastic properties is generally known for other uses, but has not previously been implemented into hair bands. It is a novel aspect of the invention to utilize polyurethane tape to provide a relatively wide range of elasticity, durability, and relatively low friction between the core (14) and the cover (12), thereby overcoming shortcomings associated with existing hair bands, as described above. The band (10) is made by first cutting the fabric of the cover (12) to length and sewing or otherwise adhering the edges to form a tube with open ends. Thermoplastic polyurethane tape is then cute to a length relative to the fabric tube length and is threaded through the tube. Alternatively, the tube can be formed around a length of tape. Next, the ends of the tape are secured by tying the ends or otherwise fastening them relative to each other. Preferably a knot is tied, but other means known to those skilled in the art such as heat sealing or stitching may be used. The ends of the fabric tube are then attached to each other to form a closed loop by way of sewing, gluing, or other means. The inner core (14) is thus enclosed by the cover (12) and the band (10) is in the form of a closed loop.
While the preferred embodiment of the present invention has been herein described, various modification may be made without departing from the scope of the present invention.