Title:
Finger Sleeve Hair Curler Tool and Method
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The finger sleeve hair curler tool is a cloth hair curling tool accessorized with a removable curl template spool. It provides an improved method of hair curling and also functions as a novel hair accessory and ponytail holder. Piece 1 is a finger-sized fabric sleeve which is closed on one end; the open end flaring to create two lobed appendages beyond the rim of the opening, each of which has a fingertip fastener aperture. The user slips the sleeve over an index finger, coils a hair section around the sleeved finger, and secures the hair within the curler via the fingertip fastener apertures using a variety of techniques for the desired results. Piece 2 of the system is a rigid finger-shaped curl template spool which the user may alternately use as a framework to slip the fabric sleeve over, thus accommodating a greater range of hair-rolling techniques and results.


Inventors:
Fardoe, Marnie M. (Winnipeg, CA)
Application Number:
13/073637
Publication Date:
09/13/2012
Filing Date:
03/28/2011
Assignee:
FARDOE MARNIE M.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
132/246
International Classes:
A45D7/00; A45D6/00; A45D8/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20090166246Hot pour cosmetic color mixing system and kitJuly, 2009Haloulos et al.
20090235945Hairpiece Having Detachable Hair AccessorySeptember, 2009Eaton
20050229945Plastic product dispenser body with moving bottomOctober, 2005Petit
20080276949Ornamental hair pieceNovember, 2008Lee
20070163614Manual electrical equipment for hair straighteningJuly, 2007Ikesaki
20050205107Dental floss head device with a flavor delivery meansSeptember, 2005Ochs
20050155621Case with integrated closerJuly, 2005Petit
20070025936Dry nail polish applique and method of manufacturing sameFebruary, 2007Park
20060076027Artificial fingernail on a fingertipApril, 2006Tong
20090165811HAIR CURLING SYSTEMJuly, 2009Zimmerman
20090178689Artificial Eyelash Hairs with Decorative AppliqueJuly, 2009Navarro et al.
Claims:
1. A hair curler tool arranged to support a length of hair in a curled condition, the tool comprising: a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and a finger opening in an opposing open end so as to be arranged to receive a finger slidable therein in the longitudinal direction through the finger opening; and at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein; at least one of the sleeve and said at least one lobe being formed of a flexible material and the aperture being suitably sized such that the closed end of the sleeve is arranged to be received through the aperture in said at least one lobe when the length of hair is wound about the sleeve between the open and closed ends thereof.

2. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein the sleeve is formed of a flexible cloth material.

3. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein said at least one lobe is formed integrally and continuously of the same material as the sleeve.

4. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein said at least one lobe is formed of an elastic material.

5. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein the sleeve is formed of an elastic material.

6. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein the aperture in said at least one sleeve is stretchable in size.

7. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein the aperture in said at least one sleeve includes a reinforced peripheral edge.

8. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein the sleeve is formed of a cloth material joined along at least one seam extending in the longitudinal direction, said at least one seam including at least one free edge of material protruding from the seam and having a saw-tooth shaped profile along the length thereof in the longitudinal direction.

9. The curler tool according to claim 1 wherein said at least one lobe comprises a pair of lobes at diametrically opposite sides of the opening in the open end of the sleeve, each including an aperture therein arranged to receive the closed end of the sleeve therein.

10. The curler tool according to claim 1 in combination with mandrel tool arranged to be slidable received in the sleeve.

11. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the mandrel tool is substantially straight in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve.

12. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the mandrel tool is curved in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve.

13. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the mandrel tool is tapered so as to have a smaller dimension perpendicular to the longitudinal direction at a central portion than at opposing end portions locating the central portion therebetween.

14. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the mandrel tool includes a body extending between a first end and an opposing second end supporting a hook thereon in association with said at least one lobe such that said at least one lobe is arranged to be hooked onto the respective hook when on the mandrel tool when the first end of the body is slidably inserted into the sleeve.

15. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the mandrel tool is longer than the sleeve so as to define a handle portion on the mandrel tool which protrudes outwardly in the longitudinal direction from the open end of the sleeve when the mandrel tool is fully inserted into the sleeve.

16. The curler tool according to claim 10 wherein the aperture in said at least one lobe is arranged to receive the closed end of the sleeve therein together with an end of the mandrel tool received in the sleeve.

17. A method of supporting a length of hair, the method comprising: providing a hair tool comprising a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and a finger opening in an opposing open end and at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein; inserting a finger into the sleeve through the finger opening such that the finger is slidable relative to the sleeve in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve; wrapping at least a portion of the length of hair at least partway about the sleeve between the open and closed ends of the sleeve; inserting the closed end of the sleeve through the aperture in said at least one lobe such that said portion of the length of hair is retained between said at least one lobe and the sleeve.

18. The method according to claim 17 including winding a full length of said length of hair about the sleeve and retaining the full length of said length of hair in a curled condition about the sleeve using only said at least one lobe.

19. The method according to claim 17 wherein said at least one lobe comprises a pair of lobes which are diametrically opposite one another, the method including inserting the closed end of the sleeve through the aperture in both lobes such that said portion of hair is retained on diametrically opposed sides of the sleeve by the pair of lobes respectively.

20. A method of supporting a length of hair, the method comprising: providing a hair tool comprising a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and an opening in an opposing open end and at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein; providing a mandrel tool having an elongate body extending between first and second ends; inserting the first end of the mandrel tool into the sleeve through the opening in the sleeve such that the elongate body of the mandrel tool is slidable relative to the sleeve in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve; wrapping at least a portion of the length of hair at least partway about the sleeve between the open and closed ends of the sleeve; inserting the closed end of the sleeve together with the first end of the mandrel tool received therein through the aperture in said at least one lobe such that said portion of the length of hair is retained between said at least one lobe and the sleeve.

Description:

This application claims the benefit under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) of U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 61/451,941, filed Mar. 11, 2011.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a resilient tool arranged to be worn on a finger of a user such that hair can be wound about the tool and the finger of the user subsequently removed for curling the hair.

BACKGROUND

Known devices for curling hair typically comprise rigid rollers about which hair is wound. The rigid rollers are uncomfortable, especially when worn while sleeping. Furthermore rigid rollers for curling hair are not aesthetically pleasing and therefore undesirable to be worn in public environments.

U.S. Pat. No. 2,663,302, filed Dec. 22, 1953 by Palitti disclose a curl holder in the form of a sleeve arranged to be worn on a finger of a user about which hair may be curled. Retaining the hair curled about the sleeve however requires an awkward manipulation of the open end of the sleeve that receives the finger of the user therethrough by cinching a cord about the wound hair. The curl holder is thus difficult to use compared to conventional rigid rollers.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In the preferred embodiment the present invention comprises a hair curler tool comprising of a cloth sleeve the approximate length and width of a finger constructed entirely of elastic fabric wherein the sleeve is closed at one end and has on the open flared end one or two lobed appendages extending beyond the rim of the opening, each of which has a centrally-positioned fastener aperture.

According to one aspect of the invention there is provided a hair curler tool arranged to support a length of hair in a curled condition, the tool comprising:

a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and a finger opening in an opposing open end so as to be arranged to receive a finger slidable therein in the longitudinal direction through the finger opening; and

at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein;

at least one of the sleeve and said at least one lobe being formed of a flexible material and the aperture being suitably sized such that the closed end of the sleeve is arranged to be received through the aperture in said at least one lobe when the length of hair is wound about the sleeve between the open and closed ends thereof.

The flexible material of the hair curler tool is much more comfortable than prior art rigid rollers. Furthermore, the configuration of the lobe or lobes having an aperture receiving the closed end of the sleeve therein is much easier to manipulate than the cinching cord of prior U.S. Pat. No. 2,663,302 such that the hair curler tool is much easier to use than any prior art devices for retaining hair in a curled condition.

Preferably the sleeve is formed of a flexible cloth material.

Preferably said at least one lobe is formed integrally and continuously of the same material as the sleeve.

Preferably said at least one lobe is formed of an elastic material.

Preferably the sleeve is formed of an elastic material.

Preferably the aperture in said at least one sleeve is stretchable in size.

Preferably the aperture in said at least one sleeve includes a reinforced peripheral edge.

Preferably the sleeve is formed of a cloth material joined along at least one seam extending in the longitudinal direction in which said at least one seam includes at least one free edge of material protruding from the seam and having a saw-tooth shaped profile along the length thereof in the longitudinal direction.

Preferably said at least one lobe comprises a pair of lobes at diametrically opposite sides of the opening in the open end of the sleeve, each including an aperture therein arranged to receive the closed end of the sleeve therein.

The curler tool may be provided in combination with mandrel tool arranged to be slidable received in the sleeve. The mandrel tool may be substantially straight in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve or curved in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve.

Preferably the mandrel tool is tapered so as to have a smaller dimension perpendicular to the longitudinal direction at a central portion than at opposing end portions locating the central portion therebetween.

Preferably the mandrel tool includes a body extending between a first end and an opposing second end supporting a hook thereon in association with said at least one lobe such that said at least one lobe is arranged to be hooked onto the respective hook when on the mandrel tool when the first end of the body is slidably inserted into the sleeve.

Preferably the mandrel tool is longer than the sleeve so as to define a handle portion on the mandrel tool which protrudes outwardly in the longitudinal direction from the open end of the sleeve when the mandrel tool is fully inserted into the sleeve.

Preferably the aperture in said at least one lobe is arranged to receive the closed end of the sleeve therein together with an end of the mandrel tool received in the sleeve.

According to a second aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of supporting a length of hair, the method comprising:

providing a hair tool comprising a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and a finger opening in an opposing open end and at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein;

inserting a finger into the sleeve through the finger opening such that the finger is slidable relative to the sleeve in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve;

wrapping at least a portion of the length of hair at least partway about the sleeve between the open and closed ends of the sleeve;

inserting the closed end of the sleeve through the aperture in said at least one lobe such that said portion of the length of hair is retained between said at least one lobe and the sleeve.

The method may further include winding a full length of said length of hair about the sleeve and retaining the full length of said length of hair in a curled condition about the sleeve using only said at least one lobe.

When said at least one lobe comprises a pair of lobes which are diametrically opposite one another, the method may include inserting the closed end of the sleeve through the aperture in both lobes such that said portion of hair is retained on diametrically opposed sides of the sleeve by the pair of lobes respectively.

According to a further aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of supporting a length of hair, the method comprising:

providing a hair tool comprising a sleeve extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end and an opening in an opposing open end and at least one lobe on the open end of the sleeve which includes an aperture therein;

providing a mandrel tool having an elongate body extending between first and second ends;

inserting the first end of the mandrel tool into the sleeve through the opening in the sleeve such that the elongate body of the mandrel tool is slidable relative to the sleeve in the longitudinal direction of the sleeve;

wrapping at least a portion of the length of hair at least partway about the sleeve between the open and closed ends of the sleeve;

inserting the closed end of the sleeve together with the first end of the mandrel tool received therein through the aperture in said at least one lobe such that said portion of the length of hair is retained between said at least one lobe and the sleeve.

Various embodiments of the invention will now be described in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIGS. 1 and 2 are perspective views of the sleeve of the tool;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the sleeve on a finger prior to hair being wound thereon;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the spool upon which the sleeve may be mounted;

FIGS. 5 through 9 are perspective views of different steps in the use of the tool according to a first application;

FIGS. 10 through 13 are perspective views of different steps in the use of the tool according to a second application;

FIGS. 14 through 20 are perspective views of different steps in the use of the tool according to a third application; and

FIGS. 21 through 25 are perspective views of different steps in the use of the tool according to a fourth application.

In the drawings like characters of reference indicate corresponding parts in the different figures.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to the accompanying figures, there is illustrated a hair curler tool generally indicated by reference numeral 10. The hair curler tool 10 is particularly suited for supporting a length of hair in a curled condition for setting curls.

The curler tool 10 generally comprises an elongate sleeve 12 extending in a longitudinal direction between a closed end 14 which is closed and an opposing open end 16 locating an opening therein through which a finger of a user is arranged to be longitudinally slidable into the sleeve. The tool 10 further comprises two lobes 18 at the open end of the sleeve which are diametrically opposite one another and which extend in the longitudinal direction outward beyond the open end of the sleeve. Each of the lobes locates an aperture 20 therein.

The sleeve is formed of two flat pieces of cloth material which are flexible and elastic throughout the sleeves and the lobes such that the lobes are integrally formed with the sleeves continuously and seamlessly therewith. The two flat pieces of material are joined by diametrically opposed longitudinally extending seams joined together at the closed end of the sleeve to form one continuous generally U-shaped seam. The two pieces of material are thus situated on diametrically opposed sides of the sleeve along the full length thereof with each of the two pieces integrally locating one of the two lobes thereon.

In use, the tool 10 receives a finger of a user slidably inserted therein through the opening at the open end 16. A length of hair, or a portion thereof is then wrapped at least part-way about the longitudinal axis of the sleeve. When used for curling, the full length of hair is fully wrapped about the sleeve at a central location thereon between the open and closed ends of the sleeve. The hair is then retained in the wrapped or curled condition about the sleeve by stretching at least one of the lobes over the wound hair until the aperture 20 therein is aligned with the closed end of the sleeve for insertion of the closed end of the sleeve together with the finger of the user therein through the aperture with the hair clamped between the lobe and the sleeve. In some instances, both lobes are stretched over the hair at diametrically opposed sides of the sleeve with the closed end of the sleeve being inserted through the apertures of both lobes to substantially fully enclose the hair within the cloth material of the tool.

In some instances the curler tool is used with a mandrel tool 22 comprising a generally cylindrical body 24 extending generally in a longitudinal direction between a first end 26 and an opposing second end 28. The first end 26 defines a tip which is tapered or rounded for ease of insertion through the opening at the open end of the sleeve. The main portion of the body is arranged to be slidably inserted into the sleeve. The main portion is typically equal to or greater in length than the sleeve. The main portion may include a central portion 30 between two end portions 32 with the central portion being narrower in diameter than the two end portions to assist in locating the wound hair centrally thereon.

The second end of the body includes two hooks 34 formed thereon at diametrically opposed positions for alignment with the apertures 20 in the diametrically opposed lobes of the curler tool 10. Each of the hooks extends outward and curves away from the first end of the mandrel tool so as to be suitably oriented for retaining the mandrel tool inserted into the sleeve of the curler tool when the lobes are hooked on the diametrically opposed hooks 34.

The body 24 may further include a handle portion, 36 extending outward from the second end of the body in the longitudinal direction so as to be longer than the sleeve and so as to define a handle arranged to be gripped in the hand of a user if the body of the mandrel tool is inserted into the sleeve.

In use, a user initially inserts the mandrel tool into the sleeve of the curler tool and hooks the lobes 18 on the respective hooks 34. A portion of the hair of a user is then wound about the sleeve with the body of the mandrel tool remaining inserted therein. To retain the hair in the curled condition, one or both lobes are unhooked from the hooks, stretched overtop of the wound hair such that the closed end 14 of the sleeve together with the first end of the mandrel tool inserted therein are arranged to be inserted through respective apertures 20 in the two lobes 18. The mandrel tool may then be removed from the sleeve and used to support a subsequent curler tool while hair is wound thereon.

In the illustrated embodiment, the body of the mandrel tool is substantially straight in the longitudinal direction however in further embodiment, the tool may be curved between the first and second ends thereof. Due to the flexible nature of the sleeve, the sleeve follows a similarly curved path as the mandrel tool is inserted into the sleeve in this instance.

As described herein, the first component of the invention is a cloth sleeve the approximate length and width of a finger constructed entirely of elastic fabric; closed on one end and open on the other: the open end flaring to accommodate two lobed appendages beyond the rim of the opening situated opposite to each other, each lobe having a centrally-located fingertip fastener aperture. The apertures are holes in the fabric which can be reinforced with a rubberized finish or an additional layer of fabric to help maintain their resiliency. Refer to FIG. 1, a view of the Finger-Sleeve Hair Curler in flattened condition and FIG. 2 which shows the fabric sleeve from a side view.

The second component of the invention is a rigid curl template spool or mandrel which the user may alternately use as a framework to slip the fabric sleeve over in order to roll the hair section around the curler sleeve. Refer to FIG. 4, a view of the curl template spool. One end is rounded; the central portion is tapered to a narrower circumference than the ends. The other end has two small protruding fastener hooks on opposite sides of the spool and a small knob which the user may grasp while rolling the hair around the sleeve.

The tool allows for an improved cold method of curling hair: more attractive so as to be worn in public, more comfortable than traditional rigid rollers so as to be slept on, more versatile in function, more compact than rag-tie curlers so as to improve ease of use, lighter and more compact for storage than traditional curlers or electronic curling devices, more fun and uniquely novel to use, and more environmentally friendly because both its production and use consume less materials and energy than existing hair curling products.

Five embodiments of the invention are described with reference to the accompanying drawings. The curler system can be used on dry to wet hair. Drying time will vary accordingly.

Application 1: Application 1 is recommended for fast results. FIG. 9 demonstrates that when 1 fastener aperture is used to secure the hair to the finger sleeve curler, the wrapped secured hair is accessible, allowing the user the option to apply setting products like hairspray and allowing the hair to air-dry quickly:

STEP 1: The user slides a curler sleeve onto an index finger and stretches one fingertip fastener hole (aperture) over the tip of the thumb. The span of stretched fabric on the curler sleeve between the index finger and thumb tip creates an L-shaped fabric groove/guide around which the user will begin to coil the hair section (FIG. 3).

STEP 2: With the free hand, the user coils a section of hair (approximately 3×3 centimeters depending upon the thickness of hair and the desired result) around the sleeved finger (FIG. 5) starting with the root end and finishing with the “free end” of the hair section.

STEP 3: To secure the hair to the curler, the fingertip fastener aperture is unhooked from the thumb tip and slipped over the tip of the sleeved index finger (FIG. 6).

STEP 4: The user grasps the tip of the fabric sleeve to pull it snugly through the fastener hole, thus releasing the index finger from the curler sleeve and securing the hair in position on the curler (FIGS. 7 and 8). The coiled hair is now wrapped around and secured to the fabric curler (FIG. 9). The user loads another curler sleeve onto a finger and proceeds to wrap the next section of hair.

Application 2: By utilizing both fingertip fastener apertures, the curler (FIG. 13) entirely encloses the coiled hair within the curler fabric for 2 results: 1) The coiled hair section is more securely enclosed within the curler fabric and is thus suitable for longer-term use, such as wearing the curlers while the user sleeps: 2) Utilizing both fastener apertures create an attractive configuration of the curler tool which is suitable to be worn as a novel hair accessory:

STEP 1: The user slides a curler sleeve onto an index finger and stretches one fingertip fastener hole (aperture) over the tip of the thumb. The span of stretched fabric on the curler sleeve between the index finger and thumb tip creates an L-shaped fabric groove/guide around which the user will begin to coil the hair section (FIG. 3).

STEP 2: With the free hand, the user coils a section of hair (approximately 3×3 centimeters depending upon the thickness of hair and the desired result) around the sleeved finger (FIG. 5) starting with the root end and finishing with the “free end” of the hair section.

STEP 3: To secure the hair to the curler, the fingertip fastener aperture is unhooked from the thumb tip and slipped over the tip of the sleeved index finger (FIG. 8).

STEP 4: Loop the second or top fastener aperture over the tip of the index finger (FIG. 10).

STEP 5: The user grasps the tip of the fabric sleeve to pull it snugly through both fastener holes, thus releasing the index finger from the sleeve and securing the hair in position on the curler (FIGS. 11 and 12).

Application 3: The user may slide the finger sleeve curler over the curl template spool instead of their own finger to create a different type of curl. This method produces a smoother ringlet or spiral curl as compared to the more twisted or tousled curl described in application 1 and 2.

STEP 1: The user slips a curler sleeve onto the curl template spool and stretches the fastener holes (apertures) over the hooks of the spool (FIG. 14).

STEP 2: In this embodiment of the invention, the user rolls a section of hair around the middle tapered section of the curler tool, beginning with the hair tips and rolling to the hair root (FIG. 15).

STEP 3: To secure the hair to the curler, unhook the fingertip fastener apertures from the spool hooks and slip one or both apertures over the closed end of the sleeved spool (FIG. 17).

STEP 4: Grasp the closed end of the fabric sleeve and slide the template spool out from the sleeve (FIG. 18).

STEP 5: Pull the closed end of the sleeve snugly through the fastener aperture(s) to secure the coiled hair section to the curler (FIG. 8 or FIG. 18).

Application 4: To function as a ponytail holder: see FIG. 25

STEP 1: The user slides a Finger-Sleeve Hair Curler Tool onto an index finger, stretches one fingertip fastener aperture over the tip of the thumb (FIG. 21), and then gathers the entire hair section between thumb and index finger (FIGS. 22 and 23).

STEP 2: The sleeve is secured around the hair by slipping one or both of the fastener apertures over the tip of the index finger (FIG. 24).

STEP 3: Grasp the closed end of the sleeve at the index fingertip, and pull the fabric snugly through the apertures to the desired tension (FIG. 25). Note that in this embodiment of the invention, no hair is coiled around the index finger.

Application 5: A proportionately smaller version of the curler tool and curl template spool accessory may be used for shorter or smaller sections of hair:

In this embodiment of the invention, the user would slip a smaller finger sleeve curler tool on their smallest finger instead of the index finger, or onto a smaller curl template spool, and follow the same procedures as previously described.

As described herein, the present invention relates to a hair curler tool comprising of a cloth sleeve the approximate length and width of a finger constructed entirely of elastic fabric wherein the sleeve is closed at one end and has on the open flared end one or two lobed appendages extending beyond the rim of the opening, each of which has a centrally-positioned fastener aperture.

The tool may be accessorized with a second component which is a removable rigid curl template spool. The spool is designed to slide into the finger sleeve tool. The central portion of the spool is tapered to a narrower circumference than the ends. One end is rounded, other end has 2 hooks designed to stretch the fabric curler sleeve over the spool by means of securing the fastener apertures to the hooks. Beyond the hooks is a small knob which the user grasps while rolling hair around the curler tool.

The curler tool may be comprised of a fabric sleeve designed to be slipped temporarily over a finger or rigid curl template spool (that serves as a template for the curl diameter) while hair is coiled around it for the purpose of retaining curls.

The tool may have in its design fastener apertures located near the open end of the curler finger sleeve which are independent of the hole through which a finger or likewise rigid structure is temporarily inserted.

The curler tool may be constructed so that the fabric trim may have saw tooth or zigzag edges, the shape of which aids in holding the hair section in place around the curler as the hair section is coiled around a sleeved finger or sleeved curl template spool.

The curler tool may be constructed from any number of fabrics, the properties of which may include stretch, absorbent/wicking or waterproof, visual appeal due to color or pattern.

The curler tool is thus versatile in its use as a hair curler, a fashion accessory, and a ponytail holder.

The size of the fabric sleeve and accompanying curl template spool may be of varying sizes. For example, to make smaller curls with small sections of hair, a small curler sleeve could be used on the smallest finger of the hand, or a small curler sleeve could be used by children on their index fingers.

Since various modifications can be made in my invention as herein above described, and many apparently widely different embodiments of same made within the spirit and scope of the claims without department from such spirit and scope, it is intended that all matter contained in the accompanying specification shall be interpreted as illustrative only and not in a limiting sense.