Title:
Angular-edged nail polish applicators
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A nail polish applicator utilizing a tapered, absorbable, foam tip so that nail polish may be applied more precisely, more uniformly and with less mess. The angular, fine-lined edge allows for precise application of nail polish around the curvatures of the cuticle area. The soft, pliable cell structure of the foam tip readily conforms to the contours of the nail during the polish application and, thereby, paints the nail without leaving any brush marks. Additionally, the absorbable nature of the foam tip allows the polish to stay on the tip better with less dripping or mess. Other embodiments of this invention utilize variations of angular-edged applicators for more precise nail polish application.



Inventors:
Smit, Julie Ann (Evanston, IL, US)
Application Number:
11/120261
Publication Date:
11/09/2006
Filing Date:
05/03/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45D29/00
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Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
STEITZ, RACHEL RUNNING
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Julie A. Smit (1045 Hinman Avenue, Evanston, IL, 60202, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A nail polish applicator comprising an elongated stem which contains a foam pad on one end for applying nail polish to a person's fingernail, whereby said foam pad may be stroked over a fingernail to paint an even coat of nail polish in a precise and uniform manner, said foam pad containing cells of approximately equal density so that a uniform and even coat of nail polish may be applied whereby multiple coats of nail polish are not necessarily required for complete coverage, said foam pad being capable of flexing resiliently as said foam pad is stroked over the fingernail whereby said foam pad is capable of completely bending and adjusting to the contours of the fingernail, the end of said foam pad containing an angular edge so that the precise outline of the cuticle may be painted in a more reliable fashion so that the nail polish does not end up on a person's skin, said nail polish applicator being conveniently stored in the nail polish bottle when not in use with a cap sealing the opening of said nail polish bottle.

2. The nail polish product of claim 1 wherein said foam pad is tapered to form a fine-lined edge at the tip for precise application of nail polish.

3. The nail polish product of claim 1 wherein said foam pad comprises a polyurethane foam.

4. The nail polish product of claim 1 wherein said foam pad is substantially in the shape of a wedge.

5. The nail polish product of claim 1 wherein said foam pad contains a flexible, plastic member for added stability and resilience.

6. A nail polish product, comprising a bottle including a reservoir containing nail polish and an opening in the top of said bottle of nail polish, and an applicator, inserted through said opening in the top of said bottle of nail polish, including a cap for sealing said bottle of nail polish, a substantially rigid elongated stem extending from the underside of said cap, a flexible applicator tip connected to an end of said elongated stem to better paint the surface of the fingernail, the end of said flexible applicator tip comprising an angular edge which ends in a fine-lined edge to more precisely outline and paint the cuticle area so that nail polish does not end up on a person's skin, said flexible applicator tip able to bend at a right angle to said elongated stem to better adapt and bend to the contours of the fingernail.

7. The nail polish product of claim 6 wherein said flexible applicator tip comprises a bristle brush with a diagonally cut edge.

8. The nail polish product of claim 6 wherein said flexible applicator tip comprises a foam pad with a diagonally formed edge.

9. A nail polish applicator comprising an elongated stem which contains a foam pad on one end for applying nail polish to a person's fingernail, wherein said foam pad is of a tapered design to apply a coat of nail polish more precisely, uniformly and with less mess, said foam pad containing cells of substantially equal density so that a smooth uniform coat of nail polish may be painted onto the surface of the fingernail, and the end of said nail polish applicator capable of flexing resiliently as the applicator tip is stroked over a fingernail to coat it with nail polish, the end portion of said foam pad comprising a fine-lined, angular edge to precisely outline and paint the cuticle area so that said nail polish does not end up on a person's skin.

10. The nail polish applicator of claim 9 wherein said foam pad is a soft, open cell polyurethane foam.

11. The nail polish applicator of claim 9 wherein said foam pad is substantially in the shape of a wedge.

Description:

This invention relates to applicators used to apply nail polish to the surface of a fingernail.

More specifically, the invention is concerned with painting the surface of a fingernail more precisely, more uniformly and with less mess than applicators currently available today. This is accomplished by utilizing a tapered, absorbable, foam tip applicator with a fine-lined edge. Other embodiments of this invention utilize variations of angular-edged applicators.

Previously nail polish has usually been applied with a straight-edged brush attached to a rigid stem. The bristles at the tip of the brush fan out during the application making the process messy and highly inaccurate. The fact that there is not a more defined edge on the brush makes it extremely difficult to precisely apply nail polish around the curvatures of the cuticle area. The result is the nail polish ends up on the person's skin and must be wiped off later or blotches the nail necessitating removal and starting over.

An additional problem with applying nail polish with a conventional brush is that the bristles leave brush stroke marks in the nail polish. Consequently, it is necessary to apply multiple coats of nail polish to conceal the brush marks. A major benefit of this invention is that usually only one coat application is required.

An additional problem with previous nail polish applicators is the ends do not flex readily to adapt to the contours of the fingernail. Typically, a nail polish brush lacks resilience and once bent stays somewhat curved which interferes with a precise, uniform nail polish application.

Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a tapered, foam tip applicator with a more defined tip to better maneuver around the cuticle area.

Another object is to utilize an applicator tip with a fine-lined edge to apply nail polish more precisely and with less mess so that the nail polish does not end up on a person's skin.

Still another object is to apply a coat of nail polish more uniformly and evenly so multiple coats are not required.

Yet another object is to utilize an absorbable foam tip which absorbs and holds the nail polish better for a neater application.

Still another object is to provide an applicator with a foam tip that flexes resiliently to better adjust to the surface contours of the fingernail.

In keeping with an aspect of the invention, the nail polish is contained in a bottle provided with a cap which incorporates an applicator having a stem. The stem is of a semi-rigid or rigid nature and is attached and extends from the underside of the cap. The other end of the applicator stem contains a tapered, foam tip for applying a coat of nail polish to a person's fingernail. The foam tip ends in a fine-lined edge which allows for a more precise and uniform application.

When not in use, the cap is secured to the bottle by a screw-threaded connection and the applicator member is conveniently stored inside the bottle. The tapered, foam tip may be attached to the stem in various ways, e.g. by means of adhesive, heat welding or mechanical fixing.

The preferred embodiments of the invention may become more apparent from the following specification, taken with the attached drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a diagram of an applicator with a tapered, foam tip;

FIG. 2 is a side view showing the wedge-shaped design of the foam tip;

FIG. 3 shows the applicator applying nail polish to a fingernail;

FIG. 4 shows how the applicator is stored inside the bottle when not in use;

FIG. 5 shows an alternate embodiment utilizing an angular edge; and

FIG. 6 shows a brush applicator utilizing an angular edge.

FIG. 1 shows a nail polish applicator 10 containing a cap 12. A stem 14 is attached to the underside of cap 12. The stem 14 contains a foam tip 16 used for applying nail polish. Foam tip 16 is tapered to form a fine-lined edge 24. The fine-lined edge 24 allows the nail polish to be applied with a higher degree of precision and with less mess than a bristle brush.

Foam tip 16 may be secured to the stem 14 by gluing a tab 18 to the inside of foam tip 16. Heat welding or mechanical fixing could also be utilized to bond foam tip 16 to tab 18.

FIG. 2 shows a side view of nail polish applicator 10. From the side, foam tip 16 is somewhat in the shape of a wedge. Top 22 of foam tip 16 is thick enough to contain tab 18 of stem 14. From top 22, foam tip 16 tapers into a fine-lined edge 24. Fine-lined edge 24 is necessary in order to achieve the high degree of precision needed for application around the highly curved cuticle area.

The cell density of foam tip 16 should be of an absorbable nature to absorb and hold the nail polish. Also, foam tip 16 should be of a soft, pliable nature to readily adapt to the contours of the fingernail. Additionally, foam tip 16 must be of a soft consistency so as not to leave any stroke marks in the polish during application. Accordingly, the cell structure of foam tip 16 must be of a substantially uniform size and character to deliver an even coat of polish. Presently it is thought that a soft, open cell, polyurethane foam would be best suited to meet the above requirements.

FIG. 3 shows nail polish applicator 10 applying polish to a person's thumb nail. The wedge-shaped design of foam tip 16 allows for a more precise, uniform and neater nail polish application.

Additionally, foam tip 16 must be resilient and able to flex readily to adjust to the contours of the fingernail. For example, when foam tip 16 is stroked over the surface of the fingernail, it must be able to flex almost perpendicular to stem 14. The combination of the wedge-shaped design and the soft, pliable cell structure of the polyurethane foam makes foam tip 16 ideal for precise nail polish application.

FIG. 4 shows how nail polish applicator 10 is stored in bottle 30 for convenient use and easy storage.

It should now be apparent how the nail polish applicator 10 works. In operation, cap 12 is unscrewed from bottle 30. Nail polish applicator 10 is removed from bottle 30 and foam tip 16 stroked over the fingernail to coat it with polish. The fine-lined edge 24 of foam tip 16 allows precise application of polish around the curvatures of the cuticle area and convex surface of the fingernail. The soft, pliable cell structure of foam tip 16 readily conforms to the contours of the nail during the polish application and thereby, coats the nail without leaving any brush marks. Additionally, the absorbable nature of foam tip 16 allows the polish to stay on the tip better with less dripping or mess.

FIG. 5 shows an alternate embodiment for a nail polish applicator 40 with a foam pad 42 which ends in a diagonally cut edge 44. Foam pad 42 contains a flexible plastic member 46 which adds extra stability and resilience to foam pad 42. Nail polish applicator 40 contains an elongated stem 48 which is attached to the underside of a cap 50. The diagonally cut edge 44 is able to more precisely paint the fingernail than a conventional, straight-edged applicator.

FIG. 6 shows another embodiment for a nail polish applicator 60 which comprises bristles 62 forming a diagonally cut edge 64. Bristles 62 of diagonally cut edge 64 again adapt much better to the contours of the fingernail than the conventional straight bristle brush.

The diagonally cut edge 64, also, minimizes brush strokes as the polish glides on more quickly and efficiently. Bristles 62 are preferably made of a nylon material for added resilience.

All of the aforementioned embodiments have angular, fine-lined edges for painting the surface of a fingernail more precisely, more uniformly and with less mess than applicators currently used today. Those skilled in the art may find modifications in the angular-edged, nail polish applicators as disclosed. Therefore, the appended claims are to be construed broadly enough to cover all equivalent structures falling within the scope and spirit of this invention.