Title:
Facial mask
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention meets the above needs and others by providing an open celled facial mask that is worn on the user's face to provide comfort and relaxation and to optionally act as a topical applicator. The present invention includes an open celled facial mask with optional cutouts such as a pair of eye cutouts, a nose cutout, a mouth cutout, and an attachment mechanism for securing the mask in physical contact with the user's face.



Inventors:
Pitsolis, George (North York, CA)
Application Number:
10/932394
Publication Date:
03/09/2006
Filing Date:
09/02/2004
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A42B1/18
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
DIXON, ANNETTE FREDRICKA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
The Dobrusin Law Firm P.C. (Pontiac, MI, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A device comprising: a facial mask made of a cellular material where the mask comprises a pair of eye cutouts, at least one mouth cutout; and at least one nose cutout; and at least one attachment mechanism adopted to provide physical contact between the mask and the face of the average user; wherein the cellular material is sized to substantially cover an average user's face.

2. A device as in claim 1 wherein the cellular membrane is selected from natural or synthetic foam, natural or synthetic fibrous material, and combinations thereof.

3. A device according to claim 2 wherein the natural foam consists of polyester, polyurethane, latex, non-woven terry fabric, cellulose, and combinations thereof.

4. A device according to claim 1 wherein the at least one attachment mechanism comprises at least one ribbon, sash, strap, band, or belt; comprised of satin, polyester, mylar, cotton, rayon, rubber, latex, silk, and combinations thereof.

5. A device according to claim 4 wherein the at least one attachment mechanism further comprises at least one hook and at least one loop where the hook hooks the loop to secure the mask in physical contact to the user's face.

6. A device according to claim 4 wherein the attachment mechanism further comprises an adhesive that connects the attachment mechanism and secures the mask in physical contact to the user's face.

7. A device according to claim 4 wherein the attachment mechanism further comprises at least one button and at least one hole where the button buttons the hole to secure the mask to the user's face.

8. A device according to claim 2 wherein the cellular material further comprises at least one hypoallergenic hygroscopic compound that retains moisture in the material and prevents the material from completely drying.

9. A device according to claim 8 wherein the hygroscopic compound comprises magnesium chloride.

10. A device according to claim 2 wherein the cellular material further comprises at least one fragrance.

11. A device according to claim 2 wherein the cellular material further comprises at least one anti-microbial compound.

12. A device according to claim 2 wherein the cellular material further comprises at least one facial cleaner.

13. A device according to claim 10 wherein the cellular material further comprises at least one hypoallergenic hygroscopic compound, at least one fragrance, at least one anti-microbial compound, at least one facial cleaner, or combinations thereof.

14. A device comprising: a facial mask made of a foam material; at least one attachment mechanism adopted to provide physical contact between the mask and the face of an average user; a first eye cutout; a second eye cutout; at least one mouth cutout; at least one nose cutout; wherein the foam material comprises a hypoallergenic hygroscopic compound that retains moisture in the material and prevents said material from completely drying, an anti-microbial compound; and is sized to substantially cover an average user's face and attaches to the user's face with the attachment mechanism that holds the mask in physical contact with the user's face so that the user's eyes approximately align with the first and second eye cutouts, the user's nose approximately aligns with the nose cutout, and the user's mouth approximately aligns with the mouth cutout.

15. A device according to claim 14 wherein the foam material consists of one selected from cellulose, polyester, polyurethane, latex, non-woven terry fabric, cotton, or combinations thereof.

16. A device according to claim 14 wherein the foam material further comprises at least one fragrance, at least one face cleaner, or combinations thereof.

17. A device according to claim 14 wherein the attachment mechanism is comprised of at least one strap.

18. A device according to claim 17 wherein the strap comprises silk, satin, polyester, cotton, rayon, silk, and combinations thereof.

19. A device according to claim 17 wherein an adhesive layer substantially covers the attachment mechanism to connect the at least one strap securely around a user's head to secure the mask in physical contact to the user's face.

20. A mask according to claim 14 wherein the nose cutout is comprised of a flap substantially covering the user's nose.

21. A mask according to claim 14 wherein the attachment mechanism is comprised of rope, cord, string, plastic, mylar, and combinations thereof.

22. A devise comprising: a facial mask made of a cellulose foam material wherein the cellulose material has a first edge and a second edge, the material is between approximately 5 mm and approximately 20 mm in thickness, the mask has a first eye cutout and a second eye cutout, a nose flap cutout, and a mouth cutout, and the material further comprises a magnesium chloride hygroscopic compound and at least one antimicrobial compound; and a first attachment strap and a second attachment strap, each comprising satin, adopted to provide physical contact between the mask and the face of the average user, having a first end and a second end; wherein the cellular material is sized to substantially cover an average user's face; the mask attaches to the user's face with the first and second attachment mechanisms that hold the mask in physical contact with the user's face so that the user's eyes approximately align with the first and second eye cutouts, the user's nose approximately aligns with the nose flap cutout, and the user's mouth approximately aligns with the mouth cutout; the first end of the first satin attachment strap communicates with the first edge of the mask at approximately the first eye cutout, the second end of the first satin strap ties with the second end of the second satin strap, the first end of the second satin strap communicated with the second edge of the mask at approximately the second eye cutout, and the second end of the second satin strap ties to the second end of the first satin strap to secure the mask in physical contact with the user's face.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to facial masks, and more particularly, to those that are worn in physical contact with the user's face to provide comfort and relaxation.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

A typical person experiences psychological stress and anxieties associated with everyday life in contemporary society. There are numerous products on the market that act to relieve stress; however, these products, such as aroma therapies (e.g. scented oils and candles), are too specific in function to have uses beyond stress relief. Thus, a traditional stress relieving device such as an aroma therapy product cannot be adapted to perform alternative functions.

Likewise, traditional facial masks suffer the same limitations. Although masks have served numerous functions such as disguises and decoration, typical masks, through form, materials, and design, are usually suited for a single purpose. Some function to protect the user from environmental dangers, to filter air being inhaled by the user, to filter air being exhaled by the user, or to apply topical skin treatments infused in gel substrates.

The inventor recognized the need for a product that addresses one or more of the above mentioned problems.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention meets the above needs and others by providing an open celled facial mask that is worn on the user's face to provide comfort and relaxation and to optionally act as a topical applicator. The present invention includes an open celled facial mask with optional cutouts such as a pair of eye cutouts, a nose cutout, a mouth cutout, and an attachment mechanism for securing the mask in physical contact with the user's face.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Embodiments of the present invention will be described hereinbelow, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawing, in which:

FIG. 1 is an environmental profile view of one embodiment of a facial mask according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a frontal view of one embodiment of a facial mask according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The following description is merely exemplary in nature and is in no way intended to limit the invention or its applications or uses.

FIG. 1 is an environmental profile view of a facial mask 10, which includes a pair of eye cutouts 12, a nose cutout 14, a mouth cutout 16, and at least one attachment mechanism 18.

In the preferred embodiment, the facial mask 10 should be sized to substantially and continuously cover the user's face including his forehead, cheeks, jaw area, and chin excepting the eye cutouts 12, nose cutout 14, and mouth cutout 16. This list is non-exhaustive, and masks that cover the user's ears and neck are also consistent with this invention. Also, the shape of the mask is unimportant so long as the mask substantially covers and is in physical contact with the user's face.

The facial mask of the present invention can be adapted to substantially cover a user's face. The preferred width of the facial mask is between approximately 6 inches and approximately 10 inches although this range is not critical. Facial masks of larger or smaller widths are still useful depending on the size of the user's face. The preferred length of the facial mask is between approximately 5 inches and approximately 12 inches. Likewise, the length of the mask is not critical and masks with longer or shorter lengths are useful depending on the size of the user's face. The thickness of the mask is not critical, but the mask should remain pliable enough so that when it is secured to the user's face, it substantially conforms to the contours of the user's face ensuring substantial physical contact between the mask and the user's face. In the preferred embodiment, the mask is between approximately 5 mm and 20 mm in thickness. Inherent with masks of this thickness can be a pliability that provides substantial physical contact between the mask and the user's face. The mask can comprise substantially flat surfaces or contoured surfaces that provide a more precise fit between the mask and the user's face. The preferred embodiment employs a mask comprising substantially flat surfaces that contact the user's face.

The present invention can be colored or can retain its natural color. Preferably, the mask retains its natural color. Similary, the overall shape of the mask is not critical so long as the mask is sized to substantially cover the user's face. In the preferred embodiment, the overall shape of the mask is ovaloid.

The eye cutouts, nose cutout, and mouth cutout should be substantially larger than the user's eyes, nose, and mouth to accommodate usage by a variety of different users possessing different sized and shaped faces. The placement of the cutouts on the facial mask is not critical so long as the locations of the cutouts approximate the locations of the user's corresponding facial features. The mask can comprise more than one mouth cutout; however, the mouth cutout is not critical and facial masks can lack mouth cutouts altogether so long as the user can breathe through at least one airway without significant obstruction while wearing the mask. Additionally, the mouth cutout can comprise a flap. If the mask has a mouth cutout, it needs to be sized and situated so that it does not interfere with the user's ability to breathe while wearing the mask. The mouth cutout can comprise any shape and size; but preferably, there is a single ovaloid mouth cutout. Likewise, the mask can comprise a pair of eye cutouts that can comprise any size and shape but should be sized and shaped to fit over the user's eyes. Optionally, the eye cutouts can also comprise flaps that cover the user's eyes. Preferably, the eye cutouts are ovals defining holes that fit over the user's eyes when the mask is worn. The present invention can include at least one nose cutout, or alternatively, can have no nose cutout so long as the mask substantially physically contacts the user's face and the user can breathe while wearing the mask. If the mask has a nose cutout, it can be any shape and size so that the user's nose can substantially protrude from the mask. Preferably, the nose cutout is a flap that is in substantial physical contact with the surface of the user's nose while allowing the nose to protrude substantially from the mask and does not obstruct the user's nostrils.

At least one attachment mechanism secures the facial mask to the user's face such that the mask physically contacts as much as the user's face as possible. The attachment mechanism can be sized to wrap around the user's head and secure the facial mask in physical contact and in proper alignment with the user's face. The attachment mechanism can be any suitable mechanism or method that secures the mask in substantial physical contact and proper alignment with the user's face. In one embodiment, the attachment comprises a strap that is affixed to diametrically opposed edges of the facial mask at approximately the respective eye cutouts.

The facial mask may be made from natural or synthetic foam, natural or synthetic fibrous material, and combinations thereof. The facial mask can be made from materials such as polyurethane, polyester, synthetic latex, non-woven terry fabric, cellulose (e.g., wood pulp fiber cellulose), and combinations thereof.

Optionally, the mask can further comprise a hypoallergenic hygroscopic compound that prevents the mask from completely drying such that the mask retains a pliable characteristic. Moreover, the mask can optionally comprise anti-microbial compounds and fragrances that function to keep the mask hygienic and fresh. In the mask's optional capacity as an applicator, it can also optionally comprise facial cleaners, moisturizers, anti-acne medications, colorants, cosmetic applications, aroma therapies, and combinations thereof. In the preferred embodiment, the mask is made from cellulose foam that contains a magnesium chloride hygroscopic compound and UltraFresh® anti-microbial compounds.

At least one attachment mechanism secures the facial mask to the user's face such that the mask physically contacts as much as the user's face as possible. Any suitable device or method may be used. In one embodiment, the attachment device comprises a strap that is affixed to diametrically opposed edges of the facial mask at approximately the respective eye cutouts. The strap can be sized to wrap around the user's head and secure the facial mask in physical contact and in proper alignment with the user's face. The strap can be produced from mylar® or similar flexible plastics, satin, polyester, rayon, silk, a woven fabric, latex, cotton, and combinations thereof. In another embodiment, the attachment mechanism can comprise a cord, string, rope, and combinations thereof. The strap can optionally comprise complimentary buttons and button holes, complimentary hooks and loops, specifically velcro®, adhesives, and combinations thereof that are adapted to secure the facial mask in physical contact with the user's face.

In one embodiment, the cellular facial mask may be worn in physical contact with the user's face such that the mask covers and contacts as much of the user's face as possible. The cellular facial mask absorbs liquid of desired temperatures (e.g. hot, lukewarm, or cold), including water, oils, and combinations thereof, until the facial mask is saturated. The user then compresses the mask forcing a substantial volume of liquid from the interstitial open cells and out of the mask. As a result, of absorbing the liquid, the mask's temperature increases or decreases to approach that of the liquid. Consequently, the temperature of any optional facial treatments carried on the mask, such as moisturizers, cosmetic applications, colorants, facial cleaners, anti-acne medications, aroma therapies, and combinations thereof, increases or decreases to approach that of the liquid. Thus, the mask can also be used to apply facial treatments heated or cooled to a desired temperature.

Using the attachment mechanism, the user secures the mask to the user's face securely such that the mask physically contacts as much of the user's face as possible while approximately aligning the user's eyes with the eye cutouts, the user's nose with the nose cutout, and the user's mouth with the mouth cutout. In accordance with the present invention, the mask can act as a hot or cold reusable facial compress with an attachment mechanism securing the mask in proper physical contact and alignment with the user's face and, unlike traditional compresses, the mask can optionally contain and be used in conjunction with topical treatments such as skin moisturizers, aromatherapies, facial cleaners, fragrances, anti-acne medications, and cosmetic applications.

The facial mask cutouts can be made by any suitable method. For example, the cutouts can be made by a blade, saw, die-punch, molding, laser cutting, water jet cutting, etching, and combinations thereof. The preferred method of producing the mask is to produce a block of cellulose foam. The block is cut to the desired thickness of the mask creating a sheet of cellulose foam. The eyes, mouth, and nose cutouts are created by die cutting the cellulose foam sheet. The attachment strap is cut to desired length and looped through the eye cutouts on the edges running perpendicular to the nose cutout. Methods of manufacturing the cellulose foam raw material are well known in the art.

Examples according to the present invention include:

EXAMPLE A

A cellulose foam face mask is impregnated with magnesium chloride, which can act as a hygroscopic agent, and UltraFresh®, which can act as an anti-microbial compound. The mask is coated with a facial cleaner on a surface that physically contacts the user's face when the mask is worn. The face mask includes a pair of ovaloid eye cutouts, a nose flap cutout, and an ovaloid mouth cutout. The attachment mechanism comprises two satin straps wherein each strap is affixed to the edge of the mask at approximately the eye cutout such that the straps are located at diametrically opposed edges of the facial mask. The straps are connectively tied to each other behind the user's head to form a knot that secures the mask to the user's face.

EXAMPLE B

A polyester foam face mask impregnated with UltraFresh®. The mask is coated with a skin moisturizer on a surface that physically contacts the user's face when the mask is worn. The face mask includes a pair of circular eye cutouts, a nose cutout, and an ovaloid mouth cutout. The attachment mechanism comprises two woven cotton material straps wherein each strap is looped through the eye cutouts on the edges running perpendicular to the nose cutout such that the straps are located at diametrically opposed edges of the facial mask. One cotton material strap includes a button while the other cotton strap includes a complementary button hole. The straps are connectively buttoned to each other behind the user's head; thus, securing the mask to the user's face.

EXAMPLE C

A cellulose foam face mask is impregnated with magnesium chloride and UltraFresh®. The face mask includes a pair of ovaloid eye cutouts, a nose flap cutout, and an ovaloid mouth cutout. The attachment mechanism comprises two satin straps wherein each strap is looped through the eye cutouts on the edges running perpendicular to the nose cutout such that the straps are located at diametrically opposed edges of the facial mask. The straps are connectively tied to each other behind the user's head to form a knot that secures the mask to the user's face.

Unless otherwise stated otherwise, dimensions and geometries of the various structures depicted herein are not intended to be restrictive of the invention, and other dimensions or geometries are possible. Plural structural components can be provided by a single integrated structure. Alternatively, a single integrated structure might be divided into separate plural components. In addition, while a feature of the present invention may have been described in the context of only three of the illustrated embodiments, such feature may be combined with one or more other features of other embodiments, for any given application. It will also be appreciated from the above that the fabrication of the unique structures herein and the operation thereof also constitute methods in accordance with the present invention.

The preferred embodiment of the present invention has been disclosed. A person of ordinary skill in the art would realize however, that certain modifications would come within the teachings of this invention. Therefore, the following claims should be studied to determine the true scope and content of the invention.