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Publication numberUS20070023539 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/496,268
Publication dateFeb 1, 2007
Filing dateJul 31, 2006
Priority dateJul 29, 2005
Publication number11496268, 496268, US 2007/0023539 A1, US 2007/023539 A1, US 20070023539 A1, US 20070023539A1, US 2007023539 A1, US 2007023539A1, US-A1-20070023539, US-A1-2007023539, US2007/0023539A1, US2007/023539A1, US20070023539 A1, US20070023539A1, US2007023539 A1, US2007023539A1
InventorsDouglas Brown, George Heilman, Jeffrey Smith
Original AssigneeBrown Douglas S, Heilman George C, Smith Jeffrey A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Air freshener container and composition
US 20070023539 A1
Abstract
An air freshener includes a cup-shaped container including a base, a side wall, and a rim. An air freshener composition is disposed within the container. The air freshener composition includes a bottom layer disposed adjacent to the base and has a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads. The air freshener composition further including a top layer extending over the bottom layer. Alternatively, the air freshener composition includes a single layer having a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads dispersed throughout.
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Claims(14)
1. An air freshener comprising:
a container; and
an air freshener composition disposed within said container, said air freshener composition including a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads and a layer of material.
2. The air freshener defined in claim 1 wherein said air freshener composition includes a bottom layer of said plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads and a top layer of material extending over said bottom layer.
3. The air freshener defined in claim 1 wherein said air freshener composition includes a layer of material having said plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads dispersed therein.
4. The air freshener defined in claim 1 wherein said beads contain a fragrance oil ranging from about 1% to about 60% of the weight thereof.
5. The air freshener defined in claim 1 wherein said layer is formed from a fragranced material.
6. The air freshener defined in claim 1 wherein said layer is formed from a fragranced gel material.
7. The air freshener defined in claim 1 further including a lid that seals the air freshener composition within the container.
8. An air freshener comprising:
a cup-shaped container including a base, a side wall, and a rim; and
an air freshener composition disposed within said container, said air freshener composition including a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads and a layer of material.
9. The air freshener defined in claim 8 wherein said air freshener composition includes a bottom layer of said plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads and a top layer of material extending over said bottom layer.
10. The air freshener defined in claim 8 wherein said air freshener composition includes a layer of material having said plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads dispersed therein.
11. The air freshener defined in claim 8 wherein said beads contain a fragrance oil ranging from about 1% to about 60% of the weight thereof.
12. The air freshener defined in claim 8 wherein said layer is formed from a fragranced material.
13. The air freshener defined in claim 8 wherein said layer is formed from a fragranced gel material.
14. The air freshener defined in claim 8 further including a lid that seals the air freshener composition within the container.
Description
    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • [0001]
    This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/703,809, filed Jul. 29, 2005, the disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0002]
    Air fresheners are commonly used in many different locations to provide a pleasant scent to the environment in which it is used. Examples of some locations in which air fresheners are commonly used include restrooms, kitchens, and a variety of other industrial and commercial locations. Regardless of the environment in which the air freshener is used, it is desirable that the scent of the air freshener be provided continuously to the environment without diminishing or becoming unnoticeable.
  • [0003]
    A typical air freshener includes a dispenser that supports an air freshener container. The air freshener container contains a quantity of an air freshener composition and is inserted within the dispenser for dispersion within the environment. During use, the air freshener composition is dispersed through the dispenser into the environment. Often, the air freshener container is supported within the dispenser in such a manner that it is easily replaceable when the quantity of the air freshener composition is depleted after a period of use. Although a variety of air freshener containers and compositions are known in the art, it would be desirable to provide an improved structure for such an air freshener container and an improved formulation for such an air freshener composition.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0004]
    This invention relates to an improved structure for such an air freshener container and an improved formulation for such an air freshener composition. The air freshener includes a cup-shaped container including a base, a side wall, and a rim. An air freshener composition is disposed within the container. The air freshener composition includes a bottom layer disposed adjacent to the base and has a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads. The air freshener composition further including a top layer extending over the bottom layer. Alternatively, the air freshener composition includes a single layer having a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate beads dispersed throughout.
  • [0005]
    Various objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments, when read in light of the accompanying drawings.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0006]
    FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an air freshener container in accordance with this invention.
  • [0007]
    FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIG. 1.
  • [0008]
    FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2.
  • [0009]
    FIG. 4 is a rear elevational view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 3.
  • [0010]
    FIG. 5 is a top plan view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 4.
  • [0011]
    FIG. 6 is a bottom plan view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 5.
  • [0012]
    FIG. 7 is a sectional elevational view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 6, together with a first embodiment of an air freshener composition in accordance with this invention, wherein the air freshener composition is sealed within the air freshener container by a lid.
  • [0013]
    FIG. 8 is a sectional elevational view similar to FIG. 7 showing the first embodiment of the air freshener composition initially after the lid has been removed from the air freshener container.
  • [0014]
    FIG. 9 is a sectional elevational view similar to FIG. 8 showing the first embodiment of the air freshener composition after the lid has been removed from the air freshener container for a period of time.
  • [0015]
    FIG. 10 is a sectional elevational view similar to FIG. 9 showing the first embodiment of the air freshener composition after the lid has been removed from the air freshener container for a further period of time.
  • [0016]
    FIG. 11 is a sectional elevational view of the air freshener container illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 6, together with a second embodiment of an air freshener composition in accordance with this invention.
  • [0017]
    FIG. 12 is a sectional elevational view similar to FIG. 11 showing the second embodiment of the air freshener composition after a lid has been removed from the air freshener container for a period of time.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
  • [0018]
    Referring now to the drawings, there is illustrated in FIGS. 1 through 6 an air freshener container, indicated generally at 10, in accordance with this invention. The illustrated air freshener container is adapted to inserted within a conventional dispenser (not shown). As will be explained in detail below, the air freshener container 10 contains a quantity of an air freshener composition. During use, the air freshener composition is dispersed through the dispenser into the environment.
  • [0019]
    The illustrated air freshener container 10 is generally cup-shaped, including a base 11, a side wall 12 and a rim 13. In the illustrated embodiment, the base 11 is generally circular in shape, although such is not required. The illustrated side wall 12 extends upwardly from the base 11 and circumferentially thereabout, and the rim 13 extends outwardly from the upper end of the side wall 12. If desired, a plurality of feet 11 a may extend downwardly from the base 11. In the illustrated embodiment, three of such feet 11 a extend downwardly from the base 11, although any number of feet 11 a may be provided. The base 11, the feet 11 a, the side wall 12, and the rim 13 may, if desired, be formed from a single piece of material, such as a plastic material.
  • [0020]
    The side wall 12 and the base 13 of the air freshener container 10 may be formed having a first and second pockets, indicated generally at 14 and 15. The first pocket 14 includes a first wall 14 a and a second wall 14 b that extend inwardly from a circumference defined by the side wall 12. In the illustrated embodiment, the first wall 14 a and the second wall 14 b of the first pocket 14 extend at a right angle relative to one another, although such is not required. If desired, a brace 14 c may extend laterally between the first wall 14 a and the second wall 14 b of the first pocket 14. Similarly, the second pocket 15 includes a first wall 15 a and a second wall 15 b that extend inwardly from a circumference defined by the side wall 12. In the illustrated embodiment, the first wall 15 a and the second wall 15 b of the second pocket 15 extend at a right angle relative to one another, although such is not required. If desired, a brace 15 c may extend laterally between the first wall 15 a and the second wall 15 b of the second pocket 15. The side wall 12 and the base 13 of the air freshener container 10 may also be formed having a recess 16. In the illustrated embodiment, the recess 16 is disposed between the first and second pockets 14 and 15, although such is not required.
  • [0021]
    As shown in FIGS. 7 through 10, the air freshener container 10 is adapted to contain a quantity of a first embodiment of an air freshener composition, indicated generally at 20. The air freshener composition 20 may be composed of any desired material. In the illustrated first embodiment, however, the air freshener composition 20 is composed of two different materials, namely, a bottom layer 21 and a top layer 22. The bottom layer 21 includes a plurality of ethylene-vinyl-acetate (EVA) beads 21 a. Such EVA beads 21 a are desirable because of their better ability to absorb perfumes relative to other thermoplastic resins. Additionally, the EVA beads 21 a possess superior volatilizing properties, which provides improved disbursement of the perfume contained in the EVA beads 21 a and results in a more potent and longer lasting fragrance being emitted from the EVA beads 21 a.
  • [0022]
    The EVA beads 21 a may contain any suitable type and amount of fragrance material. In the preferred embodiment, the EVA beads 21 a contain a fragrance oil ranging from about 1% to about 60% of the weight of the EVA material, depending upon the amount of fragrance desired. The bottom layer 21 may contain any suitable amount of EVA beads 21 a. In the preferred embodiment, approximately 0.5 ounces of the fragranced EVA beads 21 a are added to the container 12 to form the bottom layer 21. The EVA beads 21 a may be of any desired fragrance.
  • [0023]
    Additional layers of fragranced material may then be placed over the bottom layer 21, although such is not required. In the preferred embodiment, the top layer 22 is disposed over the bottom layer 21. The top layer 22 may be made from any suitable fragrance material. Preferably, the top layer 22 is composed of a fragranced gel material. The fragranced gel material can be manufactured using any suitable method, such as cold-formulation or hot-formulation, and can manufactured to any suitable consistency, such as solid, semisolid, or fluid. The top layer 22 may also have any suitable fragrance. Preferably, the fragrance of the top layer 22 differs from the fragrance of the EVA beads 21 a that form the bottom layer 21, although such is not required. The top layer 22 may contain any suitable amount of fragrance material. In the preferred embodiment, the top layer 22 is composed of three ounces of fragranced gel material.
  • [0024]
    As previously discussed, the air freshener composition 20 may be formed from either a single layer or from any suitable number of multiple layers of fragrance material. Where a single layer configuration is used, the air freshener material 20 is preferably comprised of a fragranced gel material that contains a plurality of fragrance infused EVA beads 21 a suspended therein, such as shown in FIGS. 11 and 12 and described in further detail below. Where multiple layers are used, it will be appreciated that the EVA beads 21 a may be disposed at any layering point within the air freshener composition 20. For example, for the illustrated two layer air freshener composition 20, the EVA bead layer 21 a may be arranged either as the bottom layer 21 (as shown) or as the top layer 22 of the air freshener composition 20. It will also be appreciated that where multiple fragrance layers are utilized, each fragrance layer may be composed of any type or combination of fragrance materials. For example, for the illustrated two layer air freshener composition 20, the bottom layer 21 may be composed solely of the EVA beads 21 a, while the top layer 22 may be composed of a combination of fragranced gel material having additional EVA beads 21 a suspended therein.
  • [0025]
    In use, a lid or seal 30 is initially provide across the upper end of the air freshener container 10, as shown in FIG. 7. The lid or seal 30 may, for example, be formed from a conventional metallic foil material that is adhered or otherwise secured to the rim 13 so as to close the otherwise opened end of the air freshener container 10. When the seal 30 is removed from the air freshener container 10, as shown in FIG. 8, the top layer 22 of the air freshener composition 20 is exposed to the atmosphere. The top layer 22 thus emits its fragrance into the atmosphere as it evaporates, as shown in FIGS. 8, 9, and 10. As the gel material of the top layer 22 evaporates, the top layer 22 occupies less space within the air freshener container 10. After a period of time, a sufficient amount of the top layer 22 evaporates so as to expose the bottom layer 21 of the air freshener composition 20 to the atmosphere. As previously discussed, the bottom layer 21 preferably contains a different fragrance from the top layer 22. As the bottom layer 21 is exposed, as shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, the fragrance of the bottom layer 21 is simultaneously released with the scent of the top layer 22. Where a single layer configuration is used, the EVA beads 21 a suspended within the air freshener composition 20 are exposed to the atmosphere as the gel material of the top layer 22 evaporates.
  • [0026]
    Regardless of the configuration, as the second fragranced material is exposed to the atmosphere, the fragrance of the air freshener changes to predominately the fragrance of the second material. This effect is cumulative in that as the first fragrance continues to evaporate, the scent of the air freshener composition 20 ranges from a combination of the multiple fragrances of the fragrance materials to almost exclusively the second fragrance that is exposed as the first fragrance material continues to evaporate. Referring back to the preferred embodiment, as the top layer 22 of the air freshener composition 20 evaporates and the scent of the top layer 22 is consumed, the bottom layer 21 is exposed to the atmosphere. As a result, the scent of the bottom layer 21 is released in increasing amounts as the top layer 22 continues to evaporate. As the top layer 22 evaporates, the air freshener composition 20 provides a combined scent comprised of the scents of both the bottom layer 21 and the top layer 22. After all of the top layer 22 has been consumed, the scent of the bottom layer 21 alone continues to scent the environment in which the air freshener composition 20 is placed.
  • [0027]
    The change of fragrance as the air freshener composition 20 evaporates provides a particular advantage in that it causes those in the freshened environment to become more aware of the scent of the air freshener. This heightened awareness of the air freshener scent results because not only does the fragrance of the air freshener composition 20 change, but it also does not diminish in magnitude because the new, fresh fragrance is exposed as the first fragrance material is consumed. Another advantage of the multiple fragrance configuration is the extended freshening capability of the air freshener composition 20 because the second fragrance material, which is preferably an EVA bead 21 a material, is extremely fragrant and maintains its fragrance for an extended period of time due to the capability of the EVA material to hold fragrance.
  • [0028]
    In an alternative embodiment of the invention (not shown), the fragranced EVA resin material can be utilized as a copolymer with plastic resins to form any desired plastic freshening products. Examples of such plastic freshening products include, but are not limited to, urinal screens, urinal rim sticks, and stick-up air fresheners. The fragranced EVA resin material can be combined with any plastic or combination of plastics suitable to form the desired plastic product. Examples of such suitable plastics to combine with the fragranced EVA resin material include, but are not limited to, polypropylene, low density polyethylene, and high density polyethylene.
  • [0029]
    The purpose of adding the EVA resin material as a copolymer is to enhance flexibility and provide air freshening capability to plastic parts. The utilization of the fragranced EVA resin material provides superior air freshening capability because the EVA resin material can be loaded with a greater percent of fragrance when compared to other plastic resins. The EVA resin material can be loaded with any suitable amount of fragrance oil required to produce the desired level of fragrance relative to the specific application of the formed plastic part. The preferred fragrance concentration is generally within the range of from about 1% to about 60% of the weight of the EVA resin material. Another benefit of the EVA resin material is that it remains in a stable, useable form without leaking the added fragrance, and the EVA resin material remains stable and permits the addition of colors to the EVA resin material as desired.
  • [0030]
    Based on the advantages of the EVA resin material cited above, limitless copolymer applications exist for the EVA resin material that allow for the development and manufacture of any plastic part having fragrance incorporated at a concentration that imparts significant air freshening. The use of the EVA resin material as a copolymer also provides the ability to fragrance plastic resins that were previously unstable to fragrance addition. The fragranced EVA resin material can be used as a copolymer at any concentration level, again dependent upon the desired level of fragrance for the plastic part. For example, a polymer plastic part including the EVA resin material may contain anywhere from 0.1% to 100% EVA resin material based on the overall weight of the desired plastic part to be formed.
  • [0031]
    One such example of a product that may be formed using the EVA resin material is a urinal screen. For a urinal screen application, a polymer plastic formed from approximately 70% low density polyethylene and approximately 30% fragranced EVA resin material is used to injection mold the urinal screen. The resultant, fragranced urinal screen emits air freshener for an extended period of time (i.e. approximately 30 days) and provides superior fragrance capabilities over the entire time frame in which it is used.
  • [0032]
    As shown in FIGS. 11 and 12, the air freshener container 10 is also adapted to contain a quantity of a second embodiment of an air freshener composition, indicated generally at 20′. The illustrated air freshener composition 20′ includes a gel material 21′ having a plurality of EVA beads 21 a′ suspended therein. The gel material 21′ and the EVA beads 21 a′ can be composed of the same materials as described above or from any other desired materials. Mixing the beads 21 a′ into the gel material 21′ prevents a barrier forming over the beads 21 a′ when the gel material 21′ is evaporating. It also allows a small amount of fragrance release from the beads 21 a′ while the gel material 21′ is still present and an increased evaporation from the beads 21 a′ once the gel material 21′ has evaporated. When the gel material 21′ has evaporated, the beads 21 a′ form their own layer in the base of the cup 10, free from any barrier.
  • [0033]
    In accordance with the provisions of the patent statutes, the principle and mode of operation of this invention have been explained and illustrated in its preferred embodiments. However, it must be understood that this invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically explained and illustrated without departing from its spirit or scope.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4761437 *Jan 9, 1987Aug 2, 1988Christie Sharon KProcess for preparing fragrance chips
US5087273 *Nov 5, 1990Feb 11, 1992Ward Products, Inc.Air freshening device
US7160515 *May 29, 2003Jan 9, 2007The Procter & Gamble CompanyVolatile material-containing article
US20040016818 *May 29, 2003Jan 29, 2004The Procter & Gamble CompanyVolatile material-containing article
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8007707Aug 30, 2011Fresh Products, Inc.Method of manufacture air freshening article
US8662409 *Oct 5, 2010Mar 4, 2014S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.Multi-layered active ingredient dispenser
US9243394Sep 19, 2012Jan 26, 2016Fresh Products, Inc.Replaceable restroom urinal assemblies, including urinal screens
US20080191050 *May 31, 2006Aug 14, 2008Givaudan SaVolatile Liquid Dispensing Device
US20090188986 *Aug 16, 2007Jul 30, 2009Philippe BlondeauVolatile Substance Dispensing Apparatus
US20110095096 *Apr 28, 2011Tasz Maciej KMulti-Layered Active Ingredient Dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification239/34
International ClassificationA24F25/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61L9/048, A61L9/12
European ClassificationA61L9/04G, A61L9/12
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Aug 24, 2006ASAssignment
Owner name: FRESH PRODUCTS, INC., OHIO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:BROWN, DOUGLAS S.;HEILMAN, GEORGE C.;SMITH, JEFFREY A.;REEL/FRAME:018169/0969
Effective date: 20060810