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Publication numberUS3568235 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 9, 1971
Filing dateSep 23, 1969
Priority dateSep 23, 1969
Publication numberUS 3568235 A, US 3568235A, US-A-3568235, US3568235 A, US3568235A
InventorsAston Bruno D
Original AssigneeAston Bruno D
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Cosmetic applicator with handle having integrally formed stiffener
US 3568235 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 9, 1971 B. D. ASTON 3,568,235

' COSMETIC APPLICATOR WITH HANDLE HAVING INTEGRALLY FORMED STIFFENER Original Filed Aug. 11, 1967 75 I 7@ HGJO $35 flea/v0 0. A570/V INVENTOR 52% J3 F1612 {ww- W A from/6y United States Patent O US. Cl. 244 4 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An applicator element mounted on a handle to serve the general purpose of a brush comprises a bulbous body of a soft, resilient, foamed plastic with the cells open to provide communication among the cells and to provide numerous minute outwardly open cavities formed by the outer cells. A stiffener element projecting from the handle is enclosed by the foamed plastic applicator element and is substantially smaller in cross sectional area than the applicator element.

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This application is a division of my copending application Ser. No. 816,183, filed Apr. 11, 1969, and which in turn is a continuation of my application Ser. No. 660,124, filed Aug. 11, 1967, now abandoned.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Brushes are commonly mounted on handles to serve as means for applying various materials to various surfaces. The present invention is directed to the need for circumventing certain disadvantages and limitations that are inherent in such brushes, and especially in the use of brushes to apply cosmetics.

One disadvantage of a conventional brush for use with cosmetics such as rouge, mascara, and eye shadow is that it is difficult to control the area of application with close precision. A slight increase in pressure may spread the brush beyond the desired area of application and too often errant bristles diverge from the main body of bristles to defeat close control. The need is for an applicator element that has and will maintain well defined boundaries.

A related need is a brush that may be used for sidewise strokes with close control of the width and length of the strokes. If a conventional flat brush is moved sidewise to apply a stroke of material, the bristles necessarily bend laterally and the location of the stroke varies with the degree of fiexure of the bristles. Consequently, it is not possible to move a flat brush sidewise with such control as to be sure of covering a precisely defined area.

Another disadvantage is that a conventional brush has too limited capacity for retention of a fluid cosmetic after the brush is dipped into the fluid. A brush has only limited capillary capacity and most of the fluent material that is being applied is retained on the brush by simple adherence to the smooth outer surfaces of the individual bristles of the brush.

Another need in many instances is for a brush that will make exceedingly light contact with a skin area Ideally, such a brush should be as light and soft as a feather not only for the comfort of the user but also to avoid any excessive tendency for the brush to wipe off previously applied material.

A still further need is for a brush having special utility for the application of finely divided dry materials such as dry rouge and powder. Such an improved applicator should, of course, permit accurate control of the area of application and such a brush should be capable of retaining a desirable quantity of the dry material when the brush is dipped into the dry material. Here again, a brush for the application of dry material should make only light contact with a skin area to avoid dragging away previously applied dry material.

Finally, it is desirable that a cosmetic application be of a relatively simple construction suitable for mass production by automatic or semi-automatic machinery.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention is based on the discovery that a light. soft, resilient foamed plastic such as foamed urethane has special utility for use as an applicator for cosmetics or the like if the foamed plastic is of open cell construction. With the numerous minute or microscopic cells of the foamed plastic in communication with each other, the foamed plastic has exceptional capacity for capillary action and the relatively large total volume of the voids of such an applicator of a given size provides an exceptional capacity for the retention of a quantity of liquid cosmetic after the applicator is dipped into the liquid cosmetic.

A special advantage of such an applicator is that the open cells on the outer surface of the applicator constitute numerous closely spaced cavities that are opened to the exterior of the applicator. If the applicator is used for applying a liquid cosmetic, initial contact of the applicator with the skin releases the liquid in the surface of the cavities of the applicator and thereafter the surface cavities are supplied with reserve liquid from the deeper cells of the applicator. If the applicator is dipped into a dry cosmetic such as face powder or dry rouge, the minute surface cavities of the applicator retain particles of the dry material and readily release the particles upon initial contact of the applicator with the users skin.

A further important advantage of an applicator made of a soft open cell foamed plastic is that the applicator has definite boundaries which are maintained when the applicator is brought into light pressure contact with the skin. Since the applicator tends to maintain its configuration, it is very easy for the user to control the area of application with precision. It is also an important fact that such an applicator may be moved sidewise for accurately located and well defined strokes of cosmetic material.

Where it is desirable for certain uses to provide a larger or longer applicator element that would tend to flap in an uncontrolled manner, the invention teaches that the applicator may be reinforced by a suitable stiffener member. Preferably, the stiffener member is enclosed by the foamed plastic material. In some embodiments of the invention the foamed plastic is in the form of an envelope with the stiifener member extending into the interior of the envelope. In some embodiments of the invention, the stiffener member is a rigid pin that is integral with the material of the applicator handel, the pin extending into an envelope of foamed plastic material.

A feature of the invention is that the stiffener member may be advantageously of smaller longitudinal cross sectional area than the envelope into which it extends. Thus, the foamed plastic of such an applicator may have a freely flexible marginal end portion extending beyond the end of the enclosed stiffener member with two freely flexible side marginal portions extending beyond the opposite sides of the stiffener member.

This advantage of such a stiffener inside an envelope of the open cell plastic material is that the envelope. may be relatively large without being so limber as to sacrifice close control of the area of application. A special advantage is that the applicator may be moved sidewise for sidewise strokes with close control of the area of the applied material. A further special advantage of the disclosed embodiments of the invention is that open cell foamed urethane is of such light weight and delicate construction that it compares with a feather in its ability to brush the skin with exceedingly light contact.

With reference to economical fabrication of such appli cators, the open cell foamed plastic may be produced in sheets of suitable thickness to permit applicator elements to be stamped out by mass production techniques. In this regard, one feature of the invention is that the envelopes may be produced by superimposing one layer of the foamed material on another layer and then using a cutting die to cut through both layers and simultaneously applying sonic energy along the cutting edges to seal the two cut layers together along their edges. As will be explained, economy may also be achieved by using such a combined cutting and sealing die to produce twin envelopes economically, the two envelopes being subsequently severed from each other. In one practice of the invention, further economy is achieved by using a handle construction that provides a suitable seat for the base end of the foamed plastic envelope, the seat serving the purpose of a ferrule and thus saving the cost of a ferrule.

The various features and advantages of the invention may be understood from the following detailed description and the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the drawings, which are to be regarded as merely illustrative:

FIG. '1 is a plan view of an applicator according to one embodiment employing an applicator element formed as an envelope with an interior stiffener;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the same;

FIG. 3 shows a narrow sheet of open cell foamed plastic material with a flat flexible plastic stiffener strip imposed on the sheet as used in forming the applicator element shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

FIG. 4 shows a second sheet placed on the first sheet to cover the fiat stiffener strip, as shown in FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 shows the outline of a double size envelope that may be stamped out of the multiple layers in FIG. 4 by means of a combined stamping and sealing die;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing how the applicator of FIGS. 1 and 2 may be employed for a sidewise movement against a skin surface;

FIG. 7 is a plan view of an applicator according to another embodiment employing a modified form of applicator element;

FIG. 8 is an exploded view, partly in side elevation and partly in section, showing the applicator element envelope and handle of the applicator as shown in FIG. 7, prior to assembly;

' FIG. 9 is a plan view similar to FIG. 5 showing how a combined cutting and sealing die may produce twin envelopes without stiffener members therein, as used in the applicator shown in FIG. 7;

FIG. 10 is an end view showing how the applicator of FIG. 7 may be flexed side-wise against a surface for the purpose of executing a lateral stroke against the surface;

FIG. 11 is a plan view of an applicator according to still another embodiment;

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary side elevational View of a plastic handle with an integral flexible stiffening blade extending from the end thereof and with the end of the handle forming a conical socket to seat the inner end'of an applicator element, as used in the applicator shown in FIG. 11; and

FIG. 13 is an end elevation of the handle shown in FIG. 12.

4 DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL EMBODIMENTS Referring more specifically to the drawings, an applicator is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 having an applicator element mounted on a handle 56 by means of a ferrule 58, the applicator element being in the form of an envelope of generally triangular configuration enclosing a flat resiliently flexible stiffener member 60.

The applicator shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 may be produced by a fabrication procedure that includes steps illustrated in FIGS. 3, 4, and 5. FIG. .3 shows a first layer 62 of the open cell foamed plastic with a thin flat flexible piece 64 of stiffening material positioned on the layer transversely thereof. It will be noted that the two opposite ends of the piece 64 terminate short of the two opposite margins of the layer 62.

FIG. 4 shows how a second layer 65 of the open cell foamed plastic material may be superimposed on the first layer 62 to cover the piece of stiffening material 64. FIG. 5 shows the outline 66 of a double sized envelope that may be stamped out by a combined cutting and sealing die (not shown) with the piece of stiffener material 64 enclosed by the double sized envelope. Such a double sized envelope and the enclosed piece 64 of the stiffener material may be severed along the line 68 to produce two separate applicator elements 5-5 with stiffener members 60 therein ready to be mounted on handles 56 by means of ferrules 58.

It may be noted in FIG. 1 that an end marginal portion 70 of the envelope formed by the applicator element 55 extends beyond the end of the stiffener member 60 and it may be further noted that two side marginal portions 72 of the envelope formed by the applicator element extends beyond the sides of the stiffener member. Each of these three marginal portions is capable of flexure under light pressure. FIG. 6, for example, shows how the applicator shown in FIG. 1 may be applied to a skin surface with the applicator element canted for a sidewise stroke of the applicator. If the stiffener member 60 were omitted the envelope of foamed plastic material would be excessively pliable and would simply flop around out of control.

FIG. 7 shows an applicator element 74 mounted on a handle 75, the applicator element being in the form of an envelope that is round in plan configuration. A stiffener member 76 inside the envelope may be in the form of a relatively stiff tapered pin-like member 76 that is an inte gral extension of the handle 75.

A feature of this embodiment ofthe invention, as shown in FIG. 8, is that the necessity for a ferrule is eliminated by forming a tapered socket 78 in the end of the handle around the base of the stiffener member 76, which socket may have a thin sharp peripheral edge 80. The envelope of the applicator element 7'4 has a reduced neck portion 82 that seats in the socket 78 and is bonded to the surfaces of the socket.

FIG. 9 shows by means of an outline 83 how the applicator element 74 may be produced from two layers 84 and '85 of foamed plastic, by means of a suitably combined cutting and sealing die (not shown). The outline 83 defines a double sized envelope of hourglass configuration which may be severed along the line 88 to produce two applicator elements 74 with tapered neck portions.

The envelope of the applicator element 74 shown in FIG. 7 is substantially larger than the stiffener member 76 that it enloses and is of substantially greater width than the stiffener member. Thus, the applicator element 74 has relatively large marginal portions which may be flexed for the application of light pressure against the users skin. FIG. 10 shows how the applicator element '74 may be canted to bring one of the side marginal portions into light contact with the users skin.

FIG. 11 shows an applicator element'90 mounted on a handle 92, the applicator element being in the form of an envelope with a thin fiat flexible stiffener member 94 enclosed by the envelope. As shown in FIGS. 12 and 13, the flat flexible stilfener member 94 may be an integral extension of the handle 92. FIGS. 12 and 13 also show how a conical socket 95 may be formed in the end of the handle 92 to seat an inner portion of the envelope with the inner portion bonded to the seat.

My description in specific detail of the several embodiments of the invention will suggest various substitutions and other departures from my disclosure.

What is claimed is:

1. An apparatus comprising:

an elongate rigid handle having a central elongate projection at one end thereof, of less lateral dimensions than said handle, and a generally annular shoulder at the juncture of said handle and projection, said shoulder being flared outwardly to define, with the base of said projection, an axially outwardly facing annular recess;

a generally bulbous body of resiliently yieldable foamed plastic material, of multiple cell thickness, having an elongate pocket therein open at one edge of said body, said body having a short tapering neck portion seated in said recess and secured therein; and

said elongate projection extending into said pocket and said shoulder abutting and being secured to said one edge of said body around said pocket.

2. An applicator as defined in claim 1 wherein said projection is substantially rigid, generally round in cross section and tapered towards its outer end.

3. An applicator as defined in claim 1 wherein said projection is of substantially flat plate-like shape whereby it is resiliently flexible in one plane.

4. The method of making an applicator, comprising the steps of forming an elongate rigid handle with an axial projection at one end, of less lateral dimension than said handle, and a generally annular shoulder at the juncture of said handle and projection;

superimposing two generally flat sheets of resiliently yieldable foamed plasticmaterial or multiple cell depth;

severing said sheets and sealing the severed edges thereof together, along an outline shaped to define a body having generally bulbous end portions joined by a short central neck;

severing said neck transversely to form two generally bulbous bodies each having a short hollow neck;

inserting said projection through said hollow neck and into body to position the end of said neck against said shoulder; and

securing said body on said handle.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 868,609 10/1907 Martin 15244UX 1,857,145 5/1932 Funk 15244(4)UX 2,946,073 7/ 1960 Vosbikian et al 15244X 2,962,746 12/1960 Heroy et al. 15-244 3,105,263 lO/1963 Ginter 15-244 3,228,398 1/1966 Leonard et al. 15-244X FOREIGN PATENTS 142,817 8/1951 Australia -1206 1,219,860 12/1959 France 15-244 1,236,550 6/ 1960 France.

DANIEL BLUM, 'Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.'R. 30021

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3951460 *Dec 14, 1972Apr 20, 1976Werner BlankscheinMethod of manufacturing brushes and the like
US4619014 *Feb 22, 1985Oct 28, 1986Stuart PikenScalp cleaner
US5435039 *May 19, 1994Jul 25, 1995Taylor; Robert B.Scalp stimulation and cleansing implement
Classifications
U.S. Classification15/244.1, 300/21
International ClassificationA45D40/26, A45D40/28
Cooperative ClassificationA45D40/28
European ClassificationA45D40/28