Title:
Cosmetic mirror detachably affixed to lipstick carrier
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A cosmetic mirror is disclosed which is capable of being detachably affixed to a conventional lipstick carrier. The cosmetic mirror may further be adapted to fit over lipstick carriers having a variety of shapes and sizes.



Inventors:
Taylor, Laura (Corte Madera, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/754369
Publication Date:
07/14/2005
Filing Date:
01/09/2004
Assignee:
TAYLOR LAURA
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45D42/00; A45D42/02; A45C11/00; A45D40/00; A45D40/18; (IPC1-7): A45D42/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MANAHAN, TODD E
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Vierra Magen Marcus LLP (Daly City, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A cosmetic mirror for affixing to a portion of a cosmetics carrier, comprising: a base having an aperture formed at least partially therethrough, the aperture having a shape customized to fit and receive the portion of the cosmetics carrier; and a cover pivotally mounted to the base and having a surface including a reflective material thereon, the cover capable of pivoting between a closed position where the reflective material is enclosed between the base and cover, and an open position where the reflective material is not enclosed between the base and cover; the cosmetic mirror capable of being detached from a first cosmetics carrier and reused with a second cosmetics carrier.

2. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, further comprising a mechanical mechanism for biasing the cover in the closed position.

3. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, further comprising a first magnet mounted the base and a second magnet mounted in the cover, the first and second magnets aligning with each other when the cover is in the closed position and the first and second magnets attracting each other to bias the cover in the closed position.

4. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, further comprising a hinge between the base and cover

5. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 4, wherein said hinge is formed of one of paper, metal and plastic.

6. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein the base and cover are formed at least partially of cardboard covered with paper.

7. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein the base and cover are formed at least partially of plastic.

8. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein a diameter of the aperture changes along a length of the aperture to allow the base to fit and receive portions of the cosmetics carriers of different sizes.

9. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a lipstick carrier.

10. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a lip gloss carrier.

11. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 1, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a mascara carrier.

12. A cosmetic mirror for affixing to a portion of a cosmetics carrier, comprising: a base, including: an aperture formed at least partially through the base, the aperture having a shape customized to fit and receive the portion of the cosmetics carrier, and a slot formed at least partially through the base, the slot sized to receive a reflective member capable of being housed within the slot and withdrawn from the slot; the cosmetic mirror capable of being detached from a first cosmetics carrier and reused with a second cosmetics carrier.

13. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, further comprising a mechanical mechanism for maintaining the reflective member within the slot.

14. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, further comprising a first magnet mounted in the base and a second magnet mounted in the reflective member, the first and second magnets aligning with each other when the reflective member is in the slot and the first and second magnets attracting each other to bias the reflective member into the slot.

15. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein the base is formed at least partially of cardboard covered with paper.

16. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein the base is formed at least partially of plastic.

17. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein a diameter of the aperture changes along a length of the aperture to allow the base to fit and receive portions of the cosmetics carriers of different sizes.

18. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a lipstick carrier.

19. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a lip gloss carrier.

20. A cosmetic mirror as recited in claim 12, wherein the cosmetic carrier is a mascara carrier.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

Present invention relates to a cosmetic mirror for a lipstick carrying case, and a particular to a cosmetic mirror customized to fit the a lipstick carrier cap and capable of detachably affixing to the lipstick carrying cap.

2. Description of Related Art

A significant segment of the female population wears lipstick applied from a portable lipstick carrier having a base containing the lipstick and a cap which fits over the base and protects the lipstick from contaminants. Such lipstick carriers are convenient, as they are small, may be easily carried in a pocket or a purse, and can be applied pretty much anytime and anywhere. As it is desirable to have lipstick carefully applied onto the lips, it is generally desirable to have a mirror available during the lipstick application to ensure the lipstick is applied only to the desired areas. The requirement of a mirror adds complication to the lipstick application process, and makes it difficult to apply lipstick when no mirror is available.

It is known in the prior art to affix a mirror directly to the cap of a lipstick carrying case. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 5,860,755 to Bunk entitled, “Lipstick Holder With Mirror” discloses a lipstick holder having a cylindrical cap with a round mirror affixed to an end portion of the cap. The mirror is either fixedly mounted to the cap, or rotatably mounted at an eccentric point to rotate away from the footprint of the cap. While providing some benefit in allowing a user to view the lipstick as it is being applied, this design has drawbacks in that the mirror is relatively small, and furthermore, it is attached to the lipstick cap. Therefore, when the lipstick in the carrier has been used up, the mirror must be thrown away along with the lipstick base and cap.

A further conventional design for a lipstick carrier with a mirror is shown in FIG. 1. As seen therein, a lipstick carrier 20 includes a base 22 in which the lipstick is located, and a cap 24 including a mirror 26 fixable mounted thereto. In this conventional design, the mirror 26 is mounted to the cover by a hinge and moves between an open position shown in FIG. 1 and a closed position (not shown) where the mirror folds down and is held against the cap as a result of a clasp 28 being held within a retaining member 30 on the cap 24. The mirror may be biased into the open position shown in FIG. 1 by springs (not shown), such that upon actuation of a button 32 provided in the cap 24, the clasp is detached from the retaining member and swings open to the position shown in FIG. 1. A disadvantage to such conventional designs once again is that the mirror is fixably mounted to the cap so that when the lipstick carrier is empty, the mirror 26 is thrown away along with the base and cap. Furthermore, when carried in one's pocket or purse, it is easy for the mirror 26 to unintentionally deploy, where it can be scratched, damaged, or damage other articles with which it comes into contact.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is therefore, an advantage of the present invention to provide a cosmetic mirror which detachably fits onto a cap of the lipstick carrier.

It is a further advantage of the present invention to provide a cosmetic mirror for a lipstick carrier which may be reused when the lipstick carrier is empty.

It is a further advantage of the present invention to provide a cosmetic mirror which may be customized to fit on conventional lipstick carriers having different shapes and sizes.

It is another advantage of the present invention to provide a lipstick carrier which remains in a closed position when not in use to prevent damage to the mirror and other articles with which the mirror might otherwise come into contact.

These and other advantages are provided by the present invention, which in embodiments relates to a cosmetic mirror capable of being detachably affixed to a conventional lipstick carrier. In embodiments of the invention, the cosmetic mirror includes a base and a cover affixed thereto which moves between an open and closed position relative to the base. The cosmetic mirror may be adapted to fit over lipstick carriers having a variety of shapes and sizes. This is accomplished by providing a central aperture within the base which is sized to fit snuggly over the cap of a lipstick carrier. The aperture may be of different sizes and shapes in alternative embodiments to match the different sizes and shapes of existing lipstick carrier caps.

The cosmetic mirror further includes a mirror mounted in the cover which becomes visible upon opening of the cover. One or more magnets may be provided in both the cover and the base to maintain the cover in the closed position when not in use.

In an alternative embodiment of the present invention, the cover may be omitted, and the mirror may instead fit within a slot formed in the base. When not in use, the mirror may fit entirely within slot. In order to use the mirror, it may be withdrawn partially or completely from the slot.

The present invention provides a lightweight and easy to use cosmetic mirror which is always available when lipstick is to be applied. Additionally, when a lipstick carrier is empty or it is desired to change the lipstick used, the cap may be removed from the cosmetic mirror base and the cosmetic mirror may then be used with a new or different lipstick carrier. It is further understood that the present invention may be used with other cosmetics, such as for example, lip gloss and mascara.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The present invention will now be described with reference to the drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a prospective view of a prior art lipstick carrier and integrally attached mirror;

FIG. 2 is a prospective view of a lipstick carrier and detachable cosmetic mirror according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a prospective view of a lipstick carrier and cosmetic mirror with the cosmetic mirror affixed to the lipstick carrier cap and the mirror in an open position;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the lipstick carrier with a cosmetic mirror according to an alternative embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 5A is a perspective view of a lipstick Carrier with a cosmetic mirror according to a further alternative embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 5B is an end view of the cosmetic mirror according to the embodiment shown in FIG. 5B in the closed position;

FIG. 5C is an end view of the cosmetic mirror according to the embodiment shown in FIG. 5B in the open position;

FIG. 6A is a perspective view of an alternative embodiment of the present invention where a mirror fits within a slot formed in the cosmetic mirror base;

FIG. 6B is a perspective view of the embodiment of FIG. 6A with the mirror in an extended position;

FIGS. 7 and 8 are prospective views of the present invention capable of accepting lipstick carriers of different shapes;

FIG. 9 is a prospective view of a cosmetic mirror according to the present invention;

FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional view through line 10-10 in FIG. 9;

FIGS. 11 and 12 are cross-sectional views of alternative embodiments of the present invention from the same perspective as FIG. 10;

FIG. 13 is a cross-sectional view of the cosmetic mirror according to the present invention;

FIG. 14 is a cross-sectional view through line 14-14 in FIG. 13; and

FIGS. 15 through 17 are cross-sectional views of alternative embodiments of the present invention from the same prospective as FIG. 14.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The present invention will now be described with reference to FIGS. 2 through 17, which in general relate to a cosmetic mirror which detachably fits onto the cap of a conventional lipstick carrier. It is understood that the present invention may be embodied in many different forms and should not be construed as being limited to the embodiments set forth herein; rather these embodiments are provided so that this disclosure will be thorough and complete and will fully convey the invention to those skilled in the art. Indeed, the invention is intended to cover alternatives, modifications and equivalents of these embodiments, which are included within the scope and spirit of the invention as defined by the appended claims. Furthermore, in the following detailed description of the present invention, numerous specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of the present invention. However, it will be clear to those of ordinary skill in the art that the present invention may be practiced without such specific details.

Referring now to FIG. 2, there is shown a cosmetic mirror 100 according to the present invention for use with a conventional lipstick carrier 102. The lipstick carrier includes a lipstick base 104 in which the lipstick is housed, and a cap 106 with fits over the base to protect the lipstick form dirt and other contaminates. Lipstick carrier 102 may be of conventional design and manufactured for example by Revlon of New York, N.Y.; Maybelline of Clark, N.J.; Avon Products of New York, N.Y., and a wide variety of other known cosmetics manufacturers. Those manufacturers provide lipstick carriers 102 typically having a circular footprint. However, as explained hereinafter, it is known that lipstick carriers have a variety of different shapes and sizes, and cosmetic mirror 100 may be adapted to detachably fit each such shape and size.

In particular, cosmetic mirror 100 includes a central aperture 108 which is sized to fit snuggly over the cap 106 of carrier 102. Aperture 108 may be of different sizes and shapes in alternative embodiments to match the different sizes and shapes of existing or future lipstick carrier caps. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 2, aperture 108 is cylindrical so as to fit over cylindrical cap 106. The walls defining aperture 108 may be lined with a material, such as for example rubber, for providing a frictional engagement with cap 106. Other materials for providing a frictional engagement with cap 106 are contemplated. In a further embodiment, the walls defining aperture 108 may be of the same material as base 110, but have a slightly rough texture to provide an increased frictional contact with cap 106. However, it is understood that the walls defining aperture 108 may have a smooth surface and still have the desired frictional contact with cap 106 in alternative embodiments. In embodiments of the invention, the frictional force between the cosmetic mirror 100 and cap 106 is preferably greater than a frictional force between the cap 106 and lipstick base 104. It may be otherwise however in alternative embodiments. Cap 106 may fit almost entirely within aperture 108, or may protrude slightly therefrom as shown for example in FIGS. 3 and 4.

Cosmetic mirror 100 is preferably formed of base 110 fitting over cap 106 as explained above, and a cover 112 capable of moving between a closed position shown in FIG. 2 and an open position shown in FIG. 3. The base 110 and cover 112 may be formed of various lightweight durable materials such as for example cardboard covered with paper. The paper, as well as most of the other materials from which cosmetic mirror 100 are formed, may be recycled and/or environmentally friendly such as for example the paper and materials manufactured by Custom Paper Tubes Inc., 15900 Industrial Parkway, Cleveland, Ohio 44135. Other types of paper are contemplated. Additionally, base 110 and cover 112 may be formed of other lightweight durable materials such as for example plastic in alternative embodiments. It may further be formed of plastic covered by paper. Whether paper, plastic or other material, the exposed services of base 110 and cover 112 may include an aesthetically pleasing pattern thereon.

Referring now to FIG. 3, in embodiments of the present invention where the outer surface of the cosmetic mirror is formed of paper, the paper itself may form a flexible hinge both affixing cover 112 to base 110 and allowing the cover to move between its opened and closed positions. Referring to FIG. 4, cover 112 may alternatively be fastened to cover 110 by one or more hinges 114 of conventional design allowing the cover 112 to move between its opened and closed positions. Cosmetic mirror 110 may further include one or more magnets 116 provided in both base 110 and cover 112 so that when cover 112 is in the closed position, the magnets in the respective surfaces of the base and cover align with and detract each to maintain the cover in the closed position and to prevent unintentional opening of the cover 112. It is understood that while one such magnet 116 is provided in each of the base and cover as shown, magnets may be provided at other or additional positions to maintain with cover 112 in engagement with base 110 when in the closed position, as shown for example in FIGS. 5A-5C. Although magnets 116 are shown, it is understood that alternative closure mechanisms may be provided, such as for example various known hooks, clasps, snaps, etc.

Cosmetic mirror 100 further includes a mirror 118 mounted on or within cover 112 which becomes visible upon opening of cover 112. As it is known in the art, mirror 118 may be formed from various materials such as for example glass, plastic, or a laminated sheet. When formed of glass or plastic, mirror 118 may be fit within a recessed section in cover 112 so that the mirror lies flush against or recessed within the cover, away from the base 110 when cover 112 is in the closed position. As shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, mirror 118 may be sized to have a slightly smaller length and width than cover 112 so as to leave a border 120 around mirror 118. Magnet 116 may be provided within this border 120. It is understood that the border 120 may be omitted in alternative embodiments, so that the mirror 118 extends to the edges of cover 112. In such embodiments, the one or more magnets 116 may be provided on a rear surface of the mirror 118, or alternatively, one or more small sections of mirror 118 may be cut out to provide positions for the one or magnets 116. It is further contemplated that the one or more mirrors 116 may be provided beneath the surface of the cover 112 and base 110 as shown in FIGS. 5A-5C described hereinafter. In embodiments of the invention, mirror 118 may be removable from cover 112 to allow changing or replacement of the mirror 118 within cover 112. In such embodiments, mirror 118 may be mounted to cover 112 by known detachable affixation mechanisms, including for example Velcro or snaps.

In a further embodiment of the present invention shown in FIGS. 5A-5C, the cover may be held in both the open and closed positions entirely by magnets 116. As shown in FIGS. 5A and 5B, when in the closed position, the magnets 116 around the base 110 and cover 112 may align to maintain the cover in the closed position. As shown in FIG. 5C, when in the open position, the flat edge of the cover 112 together with the attractive forces between the magnets 116 at the rear edges of the base and cover may cooperate to hold the cover 112 in a stable, open position. Although shown recessed within the cover and base in FIGS. 5A-5C, it is understood that the magnets 116 may be on the surfaces of the cover and base to lie in engagement with each other. An advantage to this embodiment is that the cover 112 may be completely removed simply by pulling the cover away from the base with sufficient force to overcome the attractive forces of the magnets.

Up to this point, mirror 118 has been deployed by opening cover 112 away from base 110. In an alternative embodiment of the present invention shown in FIGS. 6A and 6B, cover 112 may be omitted, and mirror 118 may instead fit within a slot 122 formed in base 110. When not in use, mirror 118 may fit entirely within slot 122 and be held therein by magnets (not shown) in the mirror and in the base. The magnets may be provided at one or more aligned positions in the mirror 118 and the base 110, or in a border formed around mirror 118 and the base 110. In order to use mirror 118, a notch 124 is provided in housing 110 to allow the mirror to be gripped and drawn out of slot 122 to the position shown in FIG. 6B. Mirror 118 may be freely removable from slot 122 to be used separate and independently from base 110. Alternatively, the mirror 118 may include a flange (not shown) at its rear edge which engages a lip at a front portion of slot 122 to allow mirror 118 to be drawn out of slot 122 but not completely removed from base 110. As a further alternative embodiment, one or more magnets (not shown) may be provided at a rear edge of mirror 118 or border at the rear edge of mirror 118, and a second set of magnets and provided at a front edge of slot 122. The magnets in the rear edge of the mirror and the front edge of the slot hold the mirror in a fixed and stable position when drawn from the slot as shown in FIG. 6B, but do not entirely prevent removal of the mirror completely from slot 122, if desired. It is understood that mirror 118 may be securely maintained within slot 122 by known mechanical mechanisms other than magnets in alternative embodiments of the invention.

As indicated above, cavity 108 may be shaped to accommodate any of various known shapes and sizes of conventional lipstick carriers. FIGS. 2 through 6B illustrate embodiments where the carrier is circular. FIG. 7 is an illustration where the carrier has a square or rectangular shape. As shown in FIG. 7, the aperture 108 conforms to the shape of the cap 106 and not necessarily to the shape of the carrier base 104 where base 104 for example differs in shape from the cap 106. FIG. 8 illustrates a further possible configuration where aperture 108 has generally triangular cross-sectional shape for receiving a generally triangular cap 106. It is understood that the aperture 108 may have a variety of other cross-sectional shapes to conform to the shape of the lipstick carrier.

In the embodiments described thus far, the aperture 108 has a shape which matches cap 106. In a further alternative embodiment, aperture 108 may have a single universal shape such as for example circular, oval, square, rectangular or triangular, and further include a pliable foam rubber lining capable of receiving lipstick carriers of different shapes which deform the foam rubber upon insertion into base 110 and are thus held securely within aperture 108.

Referring now to FIG. 9 and the cross-sectional view through line 10-10 of FIG. 10, aperture 108 may include a constant cross-sectional shape along its length as shown FIG. 10. However, in an alternative embodiment shown in FIG. 11, the cross-sectional shape for aperture 108 may vary along its length to become more narrow toward the back of aperture 108. This embodiment may be used to grip caps 106 of different diameters. In particular, a cap 106 would be inserted into the aperture 108 until it engages the walls of the aperture, at which point the frictional engagement holds cap 106 within base 110. As indicated above, the walls defining aperture 108 may have a rough surface or be lined with rubber to increase the frictional hold of the base 110 on the cap 106. FIG. 12 is a similar alternative embodiment capable of accepting caps 106 of different sizes, but differs from FIG. 11 in that includes a stepped configuration of aperture 108.

As shown in FIG. 13 and a cross-section view of FIG. 14, the cosmetic mirror 100 according to the present invention, may have a rectangular or square cross-sectional shape. However, it is understood that the shape along the length of the cosmetic mirror may vary in alternative embodiments such as having cross-sectional shapes as shown in FIGS. 15, 16 and 17.

In embodiments of the present invention, a light source may further be provided in cosmetic mirror 100 to improve viewing through mirror 118. The lights may be provided in the border 120 surrounding mirror 118 and/or a light may be provided in the upper surface of base 110 (i.e., the surface of base 110 opposed to the cover 112 when cover 112 is in the closed position).

The present invention provides a lightweight and easy to use cosmetic mirror which is always available when lipstick is to be applied. Additionally, when a lipstick carrier is empty, the cap 106 may be removed from the base 110 and the cosmetic mirror 100 used with a new lipstick carrier. Alternatively, while the invention has been described with reference to lipstick carriers, it is understood that the present invention may be used with other cosmetics. For example, lip gloss and mascara typically include a base including the cosmetic, and an applicator. It is understood that the aperture 108 as described above may be sized to accept the base of such lip glosses and mascaras to allow easy and readily accessible viewing when such cosmetics are applied by the applicator.

Although the invention has been described in detail herein, it should be understood that the invention is not limited to the embodiments herein disclosed. Various changes, substitutions and modifications may be made to the disclosure by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention.