Title:
Garment with integral male member adjustable support
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A garment wearable by a male user on that portion of the user's body proximate the abdomen and integrally incorporating a support structure for the user's genitals. The support structure includes an elongated band secured in suspended relation at its opposite ends to a waistband of the garment and carrying, at a central region remote from its securements to the waistband, a loop defined by overlaid engagement of opposed portions of the band. In use, the user's genitals are extended through the loop and are thereby supported by the looped band in an elevated and outwardly projecting manner which, when seen by another through the user's clothing, suggests that the user's genitals are larger and more prominent than may in fact be the case. The loop-defining overlaid engagement of the opposed portions of the band may comprise, as a matter of design choice, a fixed or a releasably and adjustable coupling engagement thereof for user-controllable variation of the amount and angle of the resulting elevation and the resulting outward projection of the user's genitals.



Inventors:
Sovell, Gregory E. (New York, NY, US)
Application Number:
11/144900
Publication Date:
12/08/2005
Filing Date:
06/03/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A41B9/00; A41B9/02; (IPC1-7): A41B9/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
TOMPKINS, ALISSA JILL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GREGORY E. SOVELL (NEW YORK, NY, US)
Claims:
1. In a garment wearable by a male user and having a waistband, a genitals support for supportedly elevating the user's genitals to augment the appearance and prominence of the user's genitals, said genitals support comprising: an elongated band having opposite ends each connected to the garment at least proximate the garment waistband to suspend the band from and within the garment; said band defining a loop formed in said band by overlaid attachment of opposed parts of said band located remote from said connections of the band ends to the garment so that said loop is disposed proximate a central portion of the elongated band remote from said connections proximate the garment waistband, said loop being located and sized for receiving therethrough at least a portion of the user's genitals to thereby supportedly elevate the user's genitals within the garment and advantageously accentuate the appearance and prominence of the user's genitals contained within the garment while maintaining normal contours of the user's contained genitals as viewed from outside of the garment.

2. In a garment in accordance with claim 1, said band comprising an elastic material.

3. In a garment in accordance with claim 1, said band comprising an elastic material in at least the central portion of the band comprising said loop.

4. In a garment in accordance with claim 1, wherein said overlaid attachment of the opposed parts of said band to form said loop comprises a user-detachable engagement of said opposed parts of the band.

5. In a garment in accordance with claim 4, wherein said overlaid user-detachable attachment of the opposed parts of said band to form said loop comprises a slit defined in each of said opposed parts of the band and an engagement member receivable through each said slit of the opposed parts of the band to detachably attach the opposed parts in overlaid relation and thereby form said loop.

6. In a garment in accordance with claim 5, wherein said engagement member comprises a button having a central shaft and a radially-enlarged boss carried on each end of the central shaft.

7. In a garment in accordance with claim 6, wherein said band comprises an elastic material.

8. In a garment in accordance with claim 4, wherein said overlaid user-detachable attachment of the opposed parts of said band to form said loop comprises a plurality of slits defined in each of said opposed parts of the band and an engagement member receivable through a selected one of the plural slits of each of the opposed parts of the band to detachably attach the opposed parts in overlaid relation and thereby form said loop of a size adjustably determined by said selection of the ones of the plural slits through which the engagement member is received.

9. In a garment in accordance with claim 8, wherein said engagement member comprises a button having a central shaft and a radially-enlarged boss carried on each end of the central shaft.

10. In a garment in accordance with claim 9, wherein said band comprises an elastic material.

11. A support for suspending male genitalia of a user in a garment comprising a band having opposite ends, the opposite ends being coupled to the garment so as to form an apex region remote from and located between the opposite ends, the band being adjustable to vary a distance between the apex region and the opposite ends so as to elevate the male genitalia rested upon the apex region to at least one elevated position, wherein the male genitalia appears augmented in the at least one elevated position.

12. The support of claim 11, wherein the band comprises overlying parts, the overlying parts forming a loop including the apex region and configured so that the male genitalia extends through the loop and terminates anteriorly therefrom in an unobstructed manner in the at least one elevated position.

13. The support of claim 11, further comprising an adjuster mounted to the band and operative to vary the distance between the apex region and the opposite ends of the band so that the male genitalia is elevated to the at least one elevated position.

14. The support of claim 13, wherein the adjuster is operative to couple intermediate regions of the band opposing to one another and located between the apex region and the opposite ends of the band, the coupled intermediate regions defining a loop including the apex region and extending around at least a portion of or an entire circumference of the male genitalia in the at least one elevated position.

15. The support of claim 14, wherein the male genitalia comprises a scrotum and a penis, the loop supporting the male genitalia so that the scrotum and penis or the scrotum or the penis extends through the loop and terminates anteriorly therefrom without being constricted or restricted.

16. The support of claim 14, wherein the adjuster comprises a male member and a female member mounted to the band within the intermediary regions, respectively, and detachably coupled to one another so as to form the loop encircling the male genitalia.

17. The support of claim 14, wherein the adjuster comprises at least one male member and a plurality of the female members, the plurality of female members being spaced from one another along at least a portion of the band, the at least one male member being removably inserted into one of the plurality of female members and selectively engageable with other female members so as to define the at least one and a plurality of additional elevated positions of the male genitalia.

18. The support of claim 14, wherein the adjuster comprises at least one female member and a plurality of male members selectively engageable with one another so as to define a plurality of elevated positions of the male genitalia extending through and supported by the loop.

19. The support of claim 14, wherein the adjuster is selected from the group consisting of a button arrangement, hook arrangement, knob arrangement and a Velcro™ arrangement and a combination thereof.

20. The support of claim 11, wherein the band comprises a stretch material or non-stretch material.

21. The support of claim 11, wherein the band is made from elastic material.

22. The support of claim 21, wherein the elastic material comprises Spandex™ blended with one of fabrics selected from the group consisting of cotton, hemp, linen, nylon, polyester, rayon, silk, terry cloth, silk and stretch vinyl and a combination of these.

23. The support of claim 16, wherein the band comprises two halves extended between the opposite ends of the band and coupled together along a centerline of the band, the male and female members being located along the centerline and opposing one another.

24. The support of the claim 11, wherein the opposite ends of the band are selectively coupled to the garment at a plurality of spaced locations for controllably elevating the apex region to a plurality of additional elevated positions.

25. A garment wearable by a male user, the garment comprising: a waist band adapted to be positioned around an abdomen of the male wearer; a front panel coupled to the waste strip and extending to a crouch area; and a support for suspending a male genitalia in the garment and coupled to the waste strip, the support having a first configuration in a static state when the support is not being loaded with the male genitalia, and a second configuration in a dynamic state when the male genitalia being rested upon the support, the support being adjustable to elevate the male genitalia to at least one elevated position in the dynamic state so that the male genitalia terminates at or close to an inner side of the front panel and appears augmented under the front panel.

26. The garment of claim 25, wherein the front panel comprises an outwardly curved region juxtaposed with the support and defining an inner enlarged space, the inner enlarged space receiving the male genitalia in the at least one elevated position so that the front panel extends substantially complementary to the elevated male genitalia without pressing upon and restricting the male genitalia in the enlarge space.

27. The garment of claim 25, wherein the front panel comprises two halves having respective uniformly configured sides, the sides each having an outwardly curved portion located between a top and bottom area of the side, the sides of the two halves being coupled together so as to define the outwardly curved region of the front panel.

28. The garment of claim 26, wherein the support comprises a band having opposite ends, the opposite ends being coupled to the waste strip at spaced apart locations so that the band extends substantially parallel to the front panel in the static state of the support and terminates past the outwardly curved region of the front panel in the static state.

29. The garment of claim 28, wherein the band comprises an apex region located between the opposite ends and supporting the male genitalia in the dynamic state of the support, the band being operative to vary a distance between the apex region and the waist strip so as to elevate the male genitalia to the at least one elevated position.

30. The garment of claim 29, wherein the band comprises two portions each extending between the opposite ends of the band, the two portions overlaying and coupled to one another so as to form a loop including the apex region, whereas the loop extends around a scrotum or a penis of the male genitalia and is configured to elevate the male genitalia towards the waist strip and support the elevated male genitalia in the at least one elevated position in the dynamic state of the support.

31. The garment of claim 30, wherein the two portions of the band are fixed to one another.

32. The garment of claim 30, wherein the two portions of the band are detachably coupled to one another.

33. The garment of claim 29, further comprising a male engaging member and a female engaging member provided on the band and operative to detachably engage one another so as to form the loop supporting the male genitalia in the at least one elevated position.

34. The garment of claim 33, further comprising a plurality of additional female engaging member, the male member being removably inserted into one of the female member and selectively engageable with other female members so that the apex region supporting the male genitalia is elevated to a plurality of additional elevated positions in the dynamic state of the support.

35. The garment of claim 33, further comprising a plurality of additional male and female members selectively engageable with one another so that the apex region supporting the male genitalia is elevated to a plurality of additional elevated positions in the dynamic state of the support, the male and female members constituting an adjuster selected from the group consisting of a button arrangement, hook arrangement, and a knob arrangement and a combination of these.

36. The garment of claim of claim 29, further comprising a plurality of fastening members spaced around and mounted to the waste strip, the opposite ends of the band being selectively coupled to the plurality of fasteners so as to adjust the distance between the apex region and the waste strip.

37. The garment of claim 28, wherein the support further comprises an additional band having respective opposite ends attached to the waist strip and an apex region remote from the waist strip, the additional band being operative to vary a distance between the apex region and the waist strip, the band and additional band being configured to selectively support a scrotum and a penis of the male genitalia.

38. The garment of claim 28, wherein the band comprises a stretch material or non-stretch material.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/576,486, filed on Jun. 3, 2004, which is fully incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates to male wearing apparel. Specifically the invention relates to support devices for male genitalia and, more particularly, to a garment configured to provide support and appearance-enhancement for a user's male genitalia.

2. Description of the Related Art

In a world in which people are too often judged by their appearance, it is a common belief that a person can change or emphasize certain positively-viewed aspects of their appearance to increase confidence and allow that person to feel liberated from restrictions imposed by genetics or happenstance. Perhaps nowhere is the practice of this idea illustrated more clearly than in articles designed and produced by the garment industry, especially, those intended for women.

For centuries, specially designed women's clothing and accessories, such as corsets, padded and specially constructed bras, and bustiers have acted to enhance the curves and contours of the female anatomy and accentuate female sexuality. On the other hand, male-specific raiment has traditionally been designed to conceal most aspects of male anatomy, exhibiting a preference for long, sharp, angular lines or more natural shapes and protrusions. There are undoubtedly many reasons for this including, but not limited to, cultural apprehension about the male anatomy and an adherence to tradition. Known designs of men's underwear attempt to cover, hide and reshape the male genitalia.

Many such prior-art designs surround or envelop the entire male genitalia and are needlessly complex. Some may be difficult to don; others may be painful to wear, and others still may be bizarre in appearance. All of them generally attempt to recreate the appearance of the natural lines and contours of the genitals with their own particular design. As a rule, however, prior-art designs disturb and distort the shape of the genitalia.

One category of these prior art designs has a front panel which covers, and/or provides a small amount of material to act as a single-pouch support for holding, the male genitals. These front genital covers are integrated into underwear, and are held to the body by an included waistband. An example of this first category can be seen in U.S. Pat. No. 5,157,793 which discloses an oval-shaped hole in the crotch panel and a dome-shaped single-pouch which is attached at the hole periphery. Basically designed to deform the genitalia, the pouch in use can cause varying degrees of discomfort.

Another category of men's underwear uses either flaps, channels, bags, pockets, holes, or slots for wrangling, hanging, suspending, or guiding the penis into some structure for containing the scrotum. These mechanisms create an unnatural and oftentimes painful separation of the penis from the scrotum. An example of this category is disclosed in U.S. Design Pat. No. 268,964, which provides a construction for surgical or medical applications and is not intended to provide comfort.

Still another category includes protective devices structured to merely cover the male genitalia. These devices are held in place by conventional briefs or athletic supporters that may worn over them, making these devices cumbersome since they must be retained by an additional article of clothing. Moreover, none of these designs covers the genitalia while retaining their natural shape but, rather, each causes an unnatural reshaping to be imposed on the genitalia, and they are generally uncomfortable to wear. A typical structure of this category is disclosed, for example, in U.S. Pat. No. 4,731,063.

A further category relates to decorative and protective devices which are designed to cover only the crotch area of the wearer, whether the scrotum or the penis or both. These devices are held in place by means which either bind about the base circumference of the male genitalia or use a wire retainer that extends from the front crotch area to the rear between the buttocks. In U.S. Pat. No. 5,467,482, for example, a decorative device is configured with a flat fabric suspended by a wire frame that does not hold the genitalia. Such a construction is inherently uncomfortable and, at best, will cause the wearer's genitals to be exposed from the top, bottom and sides and, at most, will permit the genitals to fall out the bottom, exposing them.

A need, therefore, exists for an adjustable male genitalia support that emphasizes the male anatomy in a natural and unobvious manner.

Still another need exists for a garment provided with an ergonomically configured adjustable male genitalia support that lifts the entire genitals so as to prominently expose it without, however, providing any discomfort to the wearer.

An additional need exists for a garment provided with an adjustable male genitalia support that allows for natural genital separation and accommodates and supports the dynamically changeable shape and size of the genitals.

A further need exists for a garment provided with an adjustable male genitalia support that is configured so as to not create deformities or oddly distorted contours of the wearer's genitals.

Still another need exists for a garment provided with a male genitalia support that is easily adjustable to accommodate the different shapes and sizes of various users' genitals.

Yet a further need exists for a garment provided with an adjustable support for the wearer's genitalia that provides the wearer freedom, comfort and support, eliminating the anatomically imperfect, conventional single-pouch construction of the prior art.

Finally, a need exists for an undergarment provided with an integrated adjustable support for the wearer's male genitalia without drastically altering conventional underwear.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An adjustable support for male genitalia configured in accordance with the invention meets these needs. The support is configured as a penile appearance enhancement device constructed to fit, emphasize and augment the natural anatomic shapes of the male genitals. The inventive support possesses clean, simple lines that do not disturb, deform, interfere with, or otherwise take away from the natural male anatomy; rather, the inventive garment allows the wearer to augment his anatomy while experiencing comfort.

In accordance with one aspect of the invention, there is provided a garment wearable by a male user on the lower part of the user's body, and more specifically on or about at least the abdomen, that contains an integrated support structure engageable with the user's genitals and adjustable to selectively vary the elevation of at least that portion of the genitals with which the support structure is engaged.

The garments incorporating the inventive support are, by way of preferred example, male bathing suits and underwear such as underpants; such garments may, moreover, as a general matter of design choice, be constructed to be relatively snug or generally form-fitting (such as elastic briefs), or loose-fitting (such as so-called boxer shorts) or of any intermediate or other style or configuration to suit a particular application or need or desire. Of course, forms of the invention in which the garment containing the adjustable support structure comprises shorts, or long pants or slacks, or any other article of clothing worn by males at least in part about or proximate the abdomen or location of the male genitalia are likewise contemplated in accordance with the invention.

The inventive garment integrally or detachably incorporates an adjustable support structure comprising a sling-like band that is attached at its opposite free ends to the interior waist-band or strip of the garment. The sling-like support and/or strip is preferably formed of an elastic, or a primarily or partly elastic, material and may be attached to or proximate the waist-band or strip in any convenient manner, as by sewing or stitching.

The support band is configured and disposed to form a loop at a generally central portion most remote from its securements to the waist-band or strip of the garment. The loop may be formed by permanently stitching or otherwise permanently securing overlying portions of the band one to the other, although in preferred forms of the invention the size of the loop is selectively adjustable by the user to accommodate male genitalia of different widths, to vary the lift or elevation and resulting appearance (through the garment) of the male genitalia, and otherwise for the comfort and convenience of the user. This preferred adjustability of the loop size may be attained by providing any suitable manner or arrangement or elements for detachable securability to each other of the overlying portions or regions of the band, such as mating hook-and-loop fasteners or push-through tacks or buttons or the like that are selectively insertable to and/or through the user-positioned and adjusted overlying portions of the support band. In this manner the user can freely and easily expand and contract the size of the loop at his whim or as necessary and/or appropriate.

Other objects and features of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. It is to be understood, however, that the drawings are designed solely for purposes of illustration and not as a definition of the limits of the invention, for which reference should be made to the appended claims. It should be further understood that the drawings are not necessarily drawn to scale and that, unless otherwise indicated, they are merely intended to conceptually illustrate the structures and procedures described herein.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a side view of a prior art male undergarment;

FIG. 2 is a side view of a male genitalia support garment in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a front view, partially broken away, of the inside of the male genitalia support garment of the invention configured with a sling-like band;

FIG. 4 is a front view of the sling-like band of the invention provided with a dimension-adjusting unit;

FIGS. 5A, 5B and 5C depict various embodiments of the dimension-adjusting unit of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6A illustrates a stage of the construction of a front portion of the male genitalia support garment of FIG. 2;

FIG. 6B illustrates the completed front portion of the male genitalia support garment of FIG. 2;

FIG. 7A is an elevated front view of the male genitalia support garment of the invention provided with the adjustable sling-like band of FIG. 4;

FIG. 7B is an elevated side view of the support garment of FIG. 7A; and

FIG. 8 is an elevated front view of the adjustable sling-like band configured in accordance with another embodiment of the invention,

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PRESENTLY PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Reference will now be made in detail to several embodiments of the invention that are illustrated in the accompanying drawings. Wherever possible, the same or similar reference numerals are used in the various figures of the drawings and the descriptions refer to the same or like parts or steps. It should be understood that the drawings are in simplified form and are not drawn to precise scale. For purposes of convenience and clarity only, directional terms, such as top, bottom, down, above, below, rear, and front may be used with respect to the drawings; these and similar directional terms should not be construed to limit the scope of the invention in any manner. The words “connect,” “couple,” and like terms with their inflectional morphemes do not necessarily denote direct and immediate connections, but are also intended to include connections through mediate elements or devices.

FIGS. 2, 3 and 4 illustrate the basic concept of the invention which allows the user or wearer of an inventive garment 10 to naturally elevate the male user's genitals, which as known to comprise a scrotum, testicles and penis, within the garment. In use, the wearer dresses himself in the garment 10 in the normal manner for that particular type of article—i.e. for underwear, or for a bathing suit, or for shorts, or for long pants or slacks, for example. In accordance with the invention, the garment—assumed for ease of description to be men's underwear briefs—includes an integral genitals support structure, described in additional detail hereinbelow, secured to hang from the waistband of the garment and having a loop through which at least a portion of the user's genitals are inserted. Thus, as is currently most preferred, the user inserts substantially his entire penis and scrotum through the support structure loop so that the loop encircles the same at or proximate the base of the penis, although it is also within the intended scope and contemplation of the invention that less than the user's entire genitals be inserted supportedly through the hanging loop. The support structure is preferably formed of an elastic or at least partly elastic material so that the loop portion is resiliently deformable to facilitate receipt of the user's genitals therethrough. When so inserted into and through the loop portion, the user's genitals are suspended outwardly and, to an adjustable extent in certain preferred forms of the inventive support, upwardly within the garment, without undesirably changing or deforming or modifying the normal and natural contours of the male genitals. In this manner, all or at least a portion of the genitals, as seen in FIG. 2, is lifted and augmented within the garment from the position it would otherwise assume in the absence of use of the inventive support structure. The impression, to a third-party viewing a user of the inventive garment 10 is of a male having what appears to be a larger and more prominent male genitalia than that user would otherwise appear to have. The garment 10 conforms to the elevated genitals such that its front panel smoothly slope outward and downward relative to the wearer's body and forms a front bulging area 14 housing the repositioned genitals (FIG. 2) that appear natural to a third party. As compared to the conventional men's brief design as illustrated in FIG. 1, the inventive garment 10 comfortably accommodates the male genitals in a manner that enhances their prominence and appearance without misshaping, compressing or constricting the elevated genitals. Thus, the inventive structure advantageously augments, without affecting the nature contour or appearance of, the user's male genitalia.

As perhaps best seen in FIG. 3, a garment 10 constructed in accordance with the present invention integrally incorporates a genitals support structure 16 comprised of an elongated strip or band 20 that is secured at its opposite ends 28, 30 to the garment waistband 22 at the front of the garment. At a substantially central region of the band 20, parts of the strip of material are disposed and secured in overlying relation to define a loop 42 through which, as briefly described about, the male genitals are inserted in use of the garment to augment and accentuate the appearance of the user's genitals. In preferred forms of the invention at least that portion of the band 20 forming the loop 42 is formed of an elastic material although, for ease of manufacture and to further enhance user comfort of the inventive garment, it is most preferred that the entire band 20 be formed of a suitably elastic material as will become apparent as this description proceeds. More particularly, the loop 42 is formed by parts or halves 36 and 38 (FIG. 4) or regions of the band 20 which are permanently secured or detachably coupled to one another to form and secure loop 42. The location of loop 42 relative to a waistband 22 affects the amount, degree and location to which the genitals are outwardly projected and upwardly elevated by its use. The appropriate location is so selected that the genitals are lifted, but are otherwise permitted to project naturally from the user's body without changing the contour and shape of the genitals.

Realization of the basic concept of the invention lies in the details and construction of the genitals support 16 (FIGS. 3 and 4) which is provided at or proximate a front panel or side 12 (FIG. 2) of a garment 10. The elastic band 20 of support 16 is suspended on an inner side 24 of the garment's front panel 12 and is configured to elevate and support the wearer's genitals, preferably including the scrotum, testicles and penis together or, alternatively, some portion thereof. The band 20 is a relatively thin, flat and, most preferably, one-piece elastic strip having its opposite ends 28 and 30 secured or coupled to the waistband 22 of garment 10. Preferably, opposite ends 28, 30 (FIG. 4) of band 20 are coupled to the inner side of waistband 22 at the front of garment 10. Securement of band 20 to waistband 22 may be effected using any of a variety of techniques including, without limitation, sewing, stitching or gluing of the band's ends 28, 30 to the underside of waistband 22. In the illustrated embodiment, opposite ends 28, 30 of band 20 are nonremovably fixed to garment 10. However, as will become apparent, these ends 28, 30 may instead be detachably coupled to the garment, preferably at waistband 22.

When not in use or in a static state, band 20 in the embodiments of the invention in which the size of loop 42 is user-adjustable, is characterized by a relaxed length and a generally V- or U-shaped cross-section with an apex 32 (FIG. 4) located on an axis of symmetry A-A of band 20. Band 20 may have a uniform relaxed length for the various sizes of the garment in which it is incorporated.

As mentioned above, in accordance with the embodiment of the invention shown in FIG. 3, the portions 36, 38 of the band 20 may be overlaid and permanently secured to one another to form the loop 42. Preferably, however, support 16 is provided with an arrangement for accommodating ready adjustability by the user of the size of the loop 42 by enabling user-selection of the particular location at which the portions 36, 38 of the band 20 are detachably coupled to form the loop 42 for adjusting a position of loop 42. This permits user selection of both an appropriate loop size for the user's genitals and the ability to adjust the level of elevation of the user's genitalia. In a preferred form of the invention, this adjustability is provided by a button arrangement in which slits 40 (FIG. 4) extend at least a portion of the length of band 20 on both sides 36, 38 for receipt of a button 34. The button 34 may as a matter of design choice have a variety of forms but, in one currently preferred form, has a yo-yo type shape characterized by a relatively thin central web and two enlarged end portions. In use, each of the two enlarged ends of button 34 is releasably inserted a selected one of the slits 40 defined in the respective part 36, 38 of band 20, so that the central web extends through the slit and the opposite enlarged ends project outward from the opposite sides of band 20. It is generally contemplated that button 34 will be inserted in a pair of slits 40 in band halves 28, 30 which are substantially equidistant from apex 32 so that the resulting loop 42 is bisected by axis A-A (FIG. 4) lying in the central plane of garment 10 to support the male user's genitals in a generally central position relative to the user's body. To facilitate identification of the location of apex 32 denoting the midpoint of band 20, the latter may be provided with a decorative stitching or other marking extending across band 20 at apex 32. Alternatively, button 34 may be inserted into any selected pair of the opposed slits 40 to enable the user to cause his genitals, as a matter of user choice, to assume a position away from center to an extent determinable by the user.

As will be appreciated, button 34 is selectively engageable with slits 40 so that the user may alter the size of loop 42 so as to conform the latter to the anatomy of the wearer and to selectively control the amount of elevation of the male genitals. Those skilled in the art will also appreciate that a plurality of user engageable buttons 34, releasably secured to band 20 to selected and slits 40 on the band halves 36, 38 of band 20 may also be employed particularly for enhancing the latter functionality of the invention. In any event, the user forms loop 42 so that it comfortably extends about that portion of the genitals inserted therethrough elevates the same at the desired level. Removing the user's genitals from loop 42 can be accomplished by first unbuttoning button 34, although since in preferred embodiments band 20 is formed at least in part of an elastic material, it will generally be easier for the user to simply apply a tension force to band 20 and, by suitably enlarging loop 20, to permit removal of his genitalia from loop 42.

The preferred elasticity of band 20, in combination with loop 42, ensures an elevated position of the genitals regardless of the type of garment 10 in which the inactive band support 16 is incorporated. In general, garment 10 may comprise briefs, various forms of athletic supporters, swimwear, boxer shorts, bikini briefs, thongs, pajamas, trousers and any other type of garment that is designed to cover the lower part of the wearer's body proximate the genitals.

The band 20 may be formed of a single length of elastic material n which the slits 40 are defined. Alternatively, band 20 may be constructed of two uniformly sized and shaped elongated strips 46 and 48 (FIG. 4) stitched or sewn together along a centerline 50 of band 20 so as to form at least a pair of opposed slits 40 along the centerline 50. When button 34 is not engaged with a slit 40, the slit 40 is practically invisible because of the inherent stretch characteristics of the selected materials. The fabric of band 40 may comprise, by way of illustrative example, any suitable elastic textile fiber, and blends thereof with any other fabrics or fibers, such as cotton, hemp, linen, nylon, polyester, rayon, silk, terry cloth, and stretch vinyl. Band 20 may also, in less preferred forms of the invention, be formed entirely of non-elastic material.

Turning to FIGS. 5A, 5B, 5C and 5D, it will be appreciated that the loop size adjustment mechanism need not be implemented by the button arrangement shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, but may instead have a variety of configurations generally characterized by engageable male and female members or otherwise mateable. For example, FIG. 5A depicts an arrangement of buckles 52 (only one of which is shown) provided on band 20. In the dynamic or use state of band 20, the wearer forms a loop in the manner disclosed above and then manipulates the buckles so as to selectively adjust the distance between the apex 32 and the band's opposite ends 28, 30.

As shown in FIG. 5D, the loop size adjustment member can alternatively utilize mating hook and loop type fasteners 58 on the opposed halves 36, 38 of band 20. To adjust the desired elevation level, the wearer, after having formed loop 42 (FIG. 4), can couple the selected mating regions of fasteners so as to vary the distance between apex 32 and the ends 28, 30 of the band in accordance with the user's desire or preference. Still further modifications may incorporate the use of interlocking knobs 56 (FIG. 5C) or Velcro® arrangement 54 (FIG. 5B), or any other suitable coupling structure or mechanism.

The garment in which the inventive support band 20 is incorporated may by way of illustrative example be an otherwise conventional (or selectively modified) men's brief-type underwear configured with a front panel 12 comprising a first and second uniformly configured parts 60, 62 (FIGS. 6A, 6B), respectively, that form a bulging or outwardly curved region 15 defining as inner space 14. Each of the parts 60 and 62 has a top region 64 which is secured to waistband 22, and a bottom region 66. Connecting the top and bottom regions 64, 66 is a side 68 having a generally curved shape with a smooth apex 70 located substantially midway between the top and bottom regions. During assembly, sides 68 of parts 60 and 62 are coupled together by any suitable method, as shown in FIG. 6B, so that apexes 70 extend outward and form the outwardly curved region 15 of front panel 12 defining space 14. This construction results in a somewhat larger space 14 within garment 30 than within a conventional underpant garment for accommodating a user's genitals that have been elevated and forwardly projected by the inventive support band.

The adjustable support 16, in tandem with the dome-shaped front-panel 12, enable the elevated male genitalia to appear notably augmented and, at the same time, completely natural since the garment 10 tends to readily conform to the variably shaped and dimensioned male genitalia. The garment contains the elevated male genitals in a comfortable, non-constricting, non-restricting, supportive member. The enlarged space 14 allows the elevated testicles and penis to freely and naturally project into and more visibly fill that enlarged space. Front panel 12 of garment 10 extends in a complementary fashion to the outer contour of the elevated genitals without, however, distorting, misshaping or constricting the visibly augmented genitals, as shown in FIGS. 7A and 7B. In addition to modifying the loop 42 as disclosed above, it is also possible to adjust the position of the opposite ends of the band 20 relative the waist strip 22. As diagrammatically shown in FIG. 7A, waist strip 22 may be provided with a row of fasteners 70 selectively engageable with the respective opposite ends of the band 20 in a manner which allows the user to elevate the apex 32 at the desired level.

A modification of the genitals support 16 is shown in FIG. 8. As in earlier described embodiments, the support 16 of FIG. 8 comprises a preferably elastic band 20, and a mechanism or arrangement for adjusting the axial distance between apex 32 and waistband 22 and formed of at least two male components. This modification of support 16 allow the user to adjust not only the tension or lifting force F applied to the top region of loop 42, but also to vary the size of the loop so as to accommodate various shapes and dimensions of the user's genitals.

As shown, buttons 34 are spaced along one half or side 38 of the band 20 and a series of slits 40 are defined on the other half 36. Placing the scrotum and penis between the halves 36, 38 of band 20, the wearer initially forms a first loop 42 and selectively adjusts its size by engaging the lower button 34 with one of the opposed slits 40 so that the genitalia is comfortably positioned within the loop 42. Subsequently, or therebefore, the wearer adjusts the desired level of elevation in accordance with his preferences by engaging top button 34 with an opposed slit 40. The embodiment of FIG. 8 can be further modified by providing both band halves 36, 38 with slits 40 and utilizing two or more selectively placed buttons 34 (see FIG. 4) to respectively engage opposed slits 40 and thereby hold and elevate the user's genitals to a desired extent and position.

Of course, the inventive garment may also be worn by a user without taking advantage of the functionality of the genitalia support structure—i.e. without inserting the user's genitals into and through the integral support structure—in which case the inventive garment simply functions as a conventional garment as though it lacks the integrated genitals support herein disclosed. Furthermore, although the inventive support is particularly effective for providing an enhanced appearance of the user's genitals when the entirety of the user's genitals are inserted through the support loop, as is generally intended, the advantageous functionality of the invention still can be obtained to a significant extent when only a portion of the genitals are extended through the loop.

Thus, while there have shown and described and pointed out fundamental novel features of the invention as applied to a preferred embodiment thereof, it will be understood that various omissions and substitutions and changes in the form and details of the devices illustrated, and in their operation, may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention. For example, it is expressly intended that all combinations of those elements and/or method steps which perform substantially the same function in substantially the same way to achieve the same results are within the scope of the invention. Moreover, it should be recognized that structures and/or elements and/or method steps shown and/or described in connection with any disclosed form or embodiment of the invention may be incorporated in any other disclosed or described or suggested form or embodiment as a general matter of design choice. It is the intention, therefore, to be limited only as indicated by the scope of the claims appended hereto.