Title:
Multi-style, reconfigurable hair extension apparatus and methods
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Hair extension apparatus and methods adapted to permit a user to rapidly style and reconfigure the styling of their hair. In one exemplary embodiment, the apparatus comprises a coupling member having an inner and an outer surface. A plurality of hair sections is attached to the outer surface of the member and extending substantially therefrom. A restraining element is attached to the outer surface of the member and configured to accept a fastener that secures a hair section in a desired style position. The desired style position is rapidly configurable to adapt to the activity for which a user participates.



Inventors:
Lee, Richard Junsuh (Artesia, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/388533
Publication Date:
09/27/2007
Filing Date:
03/24/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
132/53
International Classes:
A41G3/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
STEITZ, RACHEL RUNNING
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Robert E. Kasody, Esq. (Costa Mesa, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. Hair extension apparatus capable of providing a multitude of hair styles, the apparatus comprising: a coupling member having an inner and an outer surface; a plurality of hair sections attached to the outer surface of the member and extending substantially therefrom; and a restraining element attached to the outer surface of the member and configured to accept a fastener that secures a hair section in a desired style position, wherein the desired style position is rapidly configurable to adapt to the activity for which a user participates.

2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the fastener comprises a first member and a second member, and at least one of the first and second members contacts at least one of an inner surface or outer surface of the restraining element.

3. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the fastener comprises a corrugated structure on at least one inner surface of the first and the second members to perform at least one of separating or securing a portion of the hair section in the desired style position.

4. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising an elastic band to bind a portion of the hair section to create the desired style position.

5. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising an elastic band to bind at least one portion of the hair section to align the hair section to be secured by the fastener in the desired style position.

6. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the restraining element comprises a sleeve, and the coupling member comprises: a multi-texture mesh structure having a substantially flexible mesh structure underneath a sleeve area; and a substantially rigid mesh structure above the sleeve area to at least mitigate movement of the fastener upon the hair section being secured in the desired style position.

7. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the coupling member comprises a hairnet having a drawstring along an outer perimeter to secure the hairnet to hair of the user, and the restraining element comprises a sleeve.

8. The hair extension of claim 7, wherein the hairnet comprises a multi-mesh structure having a substantially flexible mesh structure underneath a sleeve area and a substantially rigid mesh structure outside the sleeve area to prevent movement of the fastener along a longitudinal dimension of the sleeve upon the hair section being secured in the desired style position.

9. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the apparatus comprises a plurality of hair sections, the fastener comprises first and second flexible members, and at least one of the first and second flexible members are slidably inserted into the restraining element to secure at least one of the plurality of hair sections in the desired style position.

10. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein: the coupling member comprises a hairnet; the restraining element comprises a sleeve substantially disposed on the outer surface; and the fastener comprises first and second members pivotally coupled to one another so as to permit at least a portion of the hair section to be substantially restrained by the fastener when the first and second members thereof are mated in a closed position.

11. A method of using a hair extension apparatus to provide at least one of a multitude of hair styles, the method comprising: disposing a hair section proximate to an outer surface of a coupling member of the apparatus; inserting a fastener into a restraining element coupled to the outer surface; passing at least a portion of the hair section through the fastener; arranging the hair section in a desired style position; and securing the fastener so as to substantially fix the hair section in the desired style position.

12. The method of claim 11, wherein inserting the fastener comprises attaching at least one of a first and a second member of the fastener to at least one of an inner and outer surface of the restraining element.

13. The method of claim 11, wherein passing at least a portion of the hair section comprises passing at least a portion of one hair section through a corrugated structure disposed on at least one inner surface of the first and the second members of the fastener so as to secure portions of the hair section in the desired style position.

14. The method of claim 11, further comprising: providing an elastic band; and using the band to bind at least a portion of the hair section to create the desired style position.

15. The method of claim 11, further comprising: providing an elastic band; and using the band to bind at least a portion of the hair section to align the hair section to be secured by the fastener to the desired style position.

16. The method of claim 11, wherein the coupling member comprises a hairnet comprising a multi-texture mesh structure having a substantially flexible mesh structure below a restraining element area and a substantially rigid mesh structure above the restraining element area, and the method further comprises using the multi-texture mesh structure to prevent movement of the fastener upon the hair section hair being secured in the desired style position.

17. The method of claim 11, wherein the coupling member comprises a hairnet comprising a multi-mesh structure having a substantially flexible mesh structure below a restraining element area and a substantially rigid mesh structure above the restraining element area, and the method further comprises using the multi-texture mesh structure to prevent movement of the fastener along a longitudinal dimension of the restraining element upon the hair section being secured in the desired style position.

18. The method of claim 11, further comprising securing a drawstring located along an outer perimeter of the hairnet to secure the hair extension to hair of a user.

19. The method of claim 11, wherein inserting the fastener comprises operatively connecting at least one of a first and second flexible member of the fastener to the sleeve to secure the hair section in a desired style position.

20. The method of claim 11, wherein the restraining element comprises a sleeve, wherein the sleeve is configured to form a pocket to accept at least one of a first flexible member and a second flexible member of the fastener.

21. A restraining element adapted to restrain at least one hair section within a hair extension apparatus, comprising: a sleeve disposed on an outer surface of a coupling element, wherein the hair section is attached to the outer surface of the coupling element, wherein the sleeve is configured to accept at least one of a first flexible member and a second flexible member of a fastener to secure the at least one hair section within the fastener to achieve a desired style position, and wherein the desired style position is configurable and reconfigurable to adapt to an activity that a user participates.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates generally to the field of hair grooming and appearance, and specifically in one exemplary aspect to hair extension apparatus for, e.g., humans.

2. Description of Related Technology

Hair extensions are well known in the art. Such extensions can be used to change an individual's physical appearance, supplement their natural hair length, and/or increase the number of hair styling options. Hair extensions may be composed of multiple strands of any of the following: natural human hairs, synthetic fibers, or a composite of different hairs and materials. Hair extensions are normally secured to human hair using any number of standard attachment procedures such as weaving, adhesives, or sewing.

Hair extensions are typically styled by trained professionals in a hair salon or beauty shop setting. Persons often request that the positioning and styling of the person's hair, including hair extensions, be tailored to suit a particular occasion or event. In one example, a person may desire their hair style to look glamorous and mimic that of another person, such as a Hollywood movie star. In another instance, a person may desire a particular hair style for an outdoor setting, such as for an upcoming athletic event (e.g., a softball tournament). In yet another case, a person may desire a hair style suited to a more formal occasion, such as a wedding, homecoming, or graduation. Alternatively, the person may wish to implement a hair style completely different than that normally worn or discussed above, such as for attendance at an outdoor heavy metal concert or as part of a costume.

Typically, the positioning and styling of hair and hair extensions under the prior art involves a somewhat labor-intensive process. For example, a professional hair stylist may spend a large number of hours attaching hair extensions to human hair, arranging the hair extensions to achieve a specified volume and styling, and securing the hair extensions to achieve the desired appearance. See, e.g., U.S. Pat. No. 6,832,614 to Frazier issued Dec. 21, 2004 and entitled “Hair extension attachment”, which is generally representative of such prior art methods and apparatus.

After the hair is styled, if a person decides to alter his/her hair style, it may require removal and/or repositioning of one or more hair extensions, which may incur yet additional significant labor. For instance, the restyling of hair may require any or all the following steps: carefully removing multiple hair extensions to prevent damage to natural hair as well as the hair extensions, restyling the natural hair to create a new style, and attaching new or modified hair extensions, which may involve one or more braiding processes by a trained hair care professional.

Thus, what is needed are improved hair styling apparatus and methods that permit easy initial configuring and reconfiguring, i.e., restyling, to suit a particular event or occasion, which minimizes the required labor and/or time. Such improved apparatus and methods would also ideally allow a person other than a trained hair care professional to implement style changes, and would further permit the creation of user-customized styles and appearance such as through the use of hair sections having different textures, colors, positions, tints, etc.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to provide a hair extension apparatus and methods that provide a user with a multitude of hair style options.

It is another object of the present invention to provide hair extension apparatus and methods allowing configuring and reconfiguring to suit a user's desires and/or rapidly change with the events or surroundings.

It is yet another object of the invention to provide extension apparatus and methods that allow for substantial user customization of their hair style.

In a first aspect of the invention, hair extension apparatus capable of providing a multitude of hair styles is disclosed. In one embodiment, the apparatus comprises: a coupling member having an inner and an outer surface; a plurality of hair sections attached to the outer surface of the member and extending substantially therefrom; and a restraining element attached to the outer surface of the member and configured to accept a fastener that secures a hair section in a desired style position. The desired style position is rapidly configurable to adapt to the activity for which a user participates

In a second aspect of the invention, a method is disclosed using a hair extension apparatus to provide at least one of a multitude of hair styles. The method comprises disposing a hair section proximate to an outer surface of a coupling member of the apparatus, inserting a fastener into a restraining element coupled to the outer surface, passing at least a portion of the hair section through the fastener, arranging the hair section in a desired style position, and securing the fastener so as to substantially fix the hair section in the desired style position.

These and other embodiments, aspects, advantages, and features of the present invention will be set forth in part in the description which follows, and in part will become apparent to those skilled in the art by reference to the following description of the invention and referenced drawings or by practice of the invention. The aspects, advantages, and features of the invention are realized and attained by means of the instrumentalities, procedures, and combinations particularly pointed out in the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a person's head showing attachment of a hair extension in accordance with a first embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a rear elevation view of a person's head with the hair extension in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a rear elevation view of a person's head exposing a sleeve which accepts a fastener in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is a rear elevation view of a person's head where a fastener has been inserted within a sleeve in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 is a rear elevation view of a person's head showing a hair section being lifted for attachment within the fastener in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 is a rear elevation view of a person's head showing a hair section secured within the fastener in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 7 is a rear elevation view of a person's head showing a hair section being secured using a fastener and an elastic band in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 8 is a rear elevation view of a person's head showing two hair sections secured within a fastener having a corrugated inner surface in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 9 is a rear elevation view of a person's head showing two hair sections secured using a fastener having a corrugated inner surface and two elastic bands in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 10 is a top elevation view of a hairnet (with hair sections removed) showing a multi-mesh structure to secure and prevent movement of a hair section affixed to the fastener in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 11 is a rear elevation view showing a hair extension with two sleeves to increase a degree of configuring and reconfiguring the hair extension in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 12 is a logical flow diagram illustrating one exemplary embodiment of the method for configuring the hair extension in accordance with the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Reference is now made to the drawings wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout.

As used herein, the term “hair” refers without limitation to any natural or artificial single- or multi-stranded material or structure, irrespective of origin, color, texture or shape. For example, hair may comprise natural hair of a human or animal, artificial or synthetic fibers, weaves or filaments and so forth.

Overview

In one salient aspect, the present invention discloses apparatus and methods for hair styling for, inter alia, cosmetic purposes. In particular, a hair extension apparatus is disclosed; the hair extension apparatus provides a hair styling mechanism (e.g., using a sleeve and a fastener) for rapidly attaching and/or reconfiguring various hair sections of the hair extension apparatus. The apparatus advantageously allows changing styling of the hair extension, thereby allowing a user to rapidly adjust their hair appearance for a desired event or present/anticipated surroundings. The same styling and attaching principles, as discussed below, may be applied to straight, curly, colored, bleached, and artificial hair.

The ability to attach and adjust the placement of multiple hair sections relative to the apparatus (and further adjust the placement of the apparatus on the user's head) provides significant flexibility to the user in quickly and easily creating new “customized” styles as well.

Exemplary Extension Apparatus—

Referring now to FIGS. 1-11, exemplary embodiments of the hair extension apparatus of the invention are described in detail. It will be appreciated that while described primarily in the context of human hair extension apparatus, at least portions of the apparatus and methods described herein may be used in other applications, such as for example and without limitation mannequins, “wax” representations, or other humanoid figures.

Moreover, it will be recognized that the present invention may find utility beyond purely cosmetic concerns. For example, the “hair sections” described subsequently herein may conceivably be replaced with sections or components having other functionality; e.g., helping to control the wearer's natural hair which may be prone to “flyaway”, static charge, etc. Other functions might include the release of a therapeutic or other chemical agent or substance (e.g., for purposes of enhanced aroma, insect repulsion, and so forth). Myriad other functions will be recognized by those of ordinary skill given the present disclosure.

FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a person's head showing attachment of a hair extension in accordance with a first embodiment of the present invention. The hair extension apparatus 10 includes a plurality of stands, for example strands of hair 12. The strands of hair 12 are gathered together and extended outward to form one of a multitude of hair sections 14. The hair section 14 extends outward from an outer surface 18 of a coupling member (here, a hairnet 13) or other such coupling apparatus. The hairnet 13 also has an inner surface 16 that contacts the person's head 5. It will be appreciated that while a hairnet is shown as the exemplary retaining apparatus, other mechanisms may conceivably be used with equal success, including for example stocking, panty hose, fishnet, elastic covering, mesh or semi-mesh structure, cap or the like.

To attach the hair extension apparatus 10 to a person's head 5, a drawstring 26 located for example around an outer perimeter 30 of the hairnet 13 attaches to a lock of that person's existing hair, such as the section 4 shown in FIG. 1. A connector (such as a clip 28 in this exemplary embodiment) is attached to the drawstring 26 and slides along the drawstring 26 to secure the hair extension apparatus 10 to the human hair section 4. In alternate embodiments, the drawstring 26 may be replaced by any means for securing the hair extension apparatus 10 to the human hair section 4. For example, the drawstring 26 may be replaced with a cord, rope, strand, twine, line, belt, braid, ribbon, tie, or the like as will be readily apparent to those of ordinary skill given the present disclosure. It will also be recognized that the extension apparatus 10 may be secured to something other than the wearer's existing hair, such as where a wig or the like is used by the wearer.

Furthermore, the drawstring 26 (or other mechanism) may be positioned in other locations, other than the outer perimeter 30 of the hairnet 13. For example, one or more loops or openings created in the hairnet may provide an insertion point to secure the human hair section 4 to the hairnet 13. Furthermore, the clip 28 may be replaced by any means for securing the drawstring 26 to a person's head 5 including for example hooks, fasteners, wires, loops, adapters, clamps, ties, links, couplers or the like.

FIG. 2 is a rear elevation view of a person's head with the hair extension in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. In this embodiment, the hair extension apparatus 10 the human hair section 4 (shown in FIG. 1) inserts into the extension apparatus 10 inside the outer perimeter 30. Drawstring 26 (in FIG. 1) is pulled and the clip 28 (in FIG. 1) secures the hair extension apparatus 10 to the human hair section 4. As shown, the hair extension apparatus 10 provides increased hair volume and well as hair length for, e.g., everyday use. Exemplary hair styling configurations are discussed in detail subsequently herein with respect to FIGS. 3-10.

FIG. 3 is a rear elevation view of a person's head exposing a restraining element (a sleeve 20 in the illustrated embodiment) attached to the hair extension. The sleeve 20 is attached to an outer surface 30 of the coupling member (hairnet 13) as shown in FIG. 1. In this example, the sleeve 20 comprises a pocket, although other forms may be used. The sleeve 20 has an inner surface 36 and an outer surface 38. In an alternative embodiment, the sleeve 20 may comprise an aperture, cavity, cut, recess, window, slit, slot, space or opening attached or built into a surface for supporting a sleeve, for example the surface supplied by the hairnet 13 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is a rear elevation view of a person's head, wherein a fastener has been inserted within a sleeve. To secure the hair section 14, a fastener 32 is inserted into the sleeve 20 (shown in FIG. 3). The exemplary fastener 32 comprises a first member 34 and a second member 35. The first member 34 and the second member 35 may be composed of many different materials that are substantially flexible and/or rigid including plastic, flexible or rigid metal, fiberglass, foam, or the like. The first member 34 and the second member 35 may be shaped as a rod, tube, stick, strip, clip, or the like. The first member 34, in this example, has a first end 31 and a second end 33. The second member 35, in this example, also has a first end 39 and a second end 41. On the first end 31 of the first member 34, a clasp 37a is disposed for mating with a clasp 37b disposed on the first end 39 of the second member 35. The second end 41 of the second member 35 operatively connects with the second end 33 of the first member 34. In this example, the second end 41 is rotatably connected, e.g., hinged or pivotally arranged, to the second end 33 through a pin 41. In alternative embodiments of the present invention, the fastener 32 may be a barrette, hook, clasp, key, latch, pin, sliding bar, cord, string, strap or other such mechanism.

In another alternative embodiment, the fastener 32 may have first and second flexible members (not shown), where at least one of the first and second flexible members is slidably inserted into the sleeve 20 to secure at least one of the plurality of hair sections in a desired style position. For example, the first and second flexible members may be made of a substantially flexible plastic or metal material such as steel or aluminum or the like. The flexibleness of the first and second flexible members (not shown) allows one or more hair extension sections, e.g., such as a plurality of the hair extension section 14 to be inserted into the same fastener, such as the fastener 32.

The first member 34 attaches to or inserts into at least one inner surface 36 of the sleeve 20. In an alternative embodiment, the second member 35 attaches to or inserts into an inner surface 36 of the sleeve 20. Other combinations of the foregoing will also be recognized by those of ordinary skill. For example, either one or both of the first member 34 or the second member 35 may be attached to or be received within the sleeve 20. In one alternative embodiment, the first member 34 may attach to the outer surface 38 (shown in FIG. 3) of the sleeve 20. In another alternative embodiment, the second member 35 may clip to the outer surface 38 (shown in FIG. 3) of the sleeve 20.

The desired style position of the hair extension apparatus 10 may be based on any number of different user criteria. For example, a user criterion may be related to an upcoming event which the user desires to attend; e.g., the user may want a hair style to participate in a causal setting, such as a sporting event, or to attend a more formal event, like a fine arts performance. Because a fastener 32, may be rapidly removed and replaced within the sleeve 20, a user may advantageously change their hair styling very rapidly, in response to changing conditions and to suit widely varying circumstances (e.g., going rapidly from a style appropriate to a casual outdoor or athletic event to a second style appropriate for a formal event). To achieve such changed hair style, hair extension users disconnect the first member 34 and the second member 35 of the fastener 32, remove or insert one or more hair sections, such as hair section 14 (shown in FIG. 5) in the fastener 32, style their natural hair as well as the hair extension apparatus 10, and reconnect (secure) the fastener 32 within the sleeve 20. As will be subsequently described with respect to other embodiments (FIGS. 5-12), hair extension users may achieve a multitude of hair styles with minimal or no assistance from another person; e.g., a hair care professional, in certain cases.

FIGS. 5 and 6 are rear elevation views of a person's head showing a hair section being lifted and secured within the fastener in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. The hair section 14 is raised by support member 40, e.g., a hair styling stick or pencil, above the fastener 32. FIG. 6 depicts the final position of the fastener (whereas FIG. 4 better shows the mechanics of the fastener mechanism). As shown in FIG. 4, when the first member 34 of the fastener 32 rotates toward the second member 35, the first clip 37a mates with the second clip 37b, and the hair section 14 is secured to the hair extension apparatus 10 situated on the person's head 5.

As shown in FIG. 7, in an alternative embodiment, an elastic band 48 (or other comparable restraining mechanism) may be utilized to increase a user's hair styling options of one or more hair sections, such as hair section 14. For example, the elastic band 48, shown in FIG. 7, secures an upper portion 49 of the hair section 14 to achieve a more rigid and refined hair styling position. In yet another alternative embodiment, the elastic band 48 may be attached along the hair section 14 between the fastener 32 and the hairnet 13 (shown in FIG. 1). This attachment point may be used to bind together the hair section 14 to aid in inserting the hair section 14 into the fastener 32 and/or provide another hair style option.

FIG. 8 is a rear view of a person's head showing two hair sections 14 secured within a fastener having a corrugated inner surface in accordance with another embodiment of the invention. In this embodiment, the fastener 32 in FIGS. 5 and 6 is replaced with fastener 60 having a corrugated structure 62 on an inner surface 64 of the second member 65, which is similar in function to the second member 35 described above. In another aspect, the fastener 60 may have a corrugated structure on an inner surface 68 of a first member 66. In the exemplary illustrated embodiment, the first member 66 rotates about a pin 61 or other such pivot to secure one or more sections of hair 63a, 63b within the corrugated structure 62. The corrugated structure 62 advantageously allows a fastened hair section to be separated into two smaller hair sections 63a, 63b along the fastener 60, so as to achieve a different hair style than those shown in FIGS. 5 and 6.

As illustrated in FIG. 9, an alternative of this embodiment of the invention utilizes one or more elastic bands 49a, 49b for cosmetic purposes. In this example, the elastic bands 49a, 49b secure an upper portion 80 of the hair sections 63a, 63b together to achieve a more rigid and structured hair styling position. In yet an alternative embodiment, the elastic bands 49a, 49b may secure along the hair sections 63a, 63b, between the fastener 60 (shown in FIG. 9) and the hairnet 13 (shown in FIG. 1), to aid aligning a section to insert into the fastener 60 (shown in FIG. 9).

FIG. 10 is a top elevation view of an exemplary configuration of a hairnet (with some hair sections removed) showing a mesh structure used to secure and prevent movement of hair sections 14 affixed to the fastener 32. The hairnet 89 comprises a multi-texture (e.g., dual) mesh structure having a first (substantially flexible) mesh structure 96 attached underneath to a sleeve area 92 by nylon thread (or alternatively by glue). The first mesh structure 96 may be composed of materials such as polyester, metal screen, or plastic. The sleeve area 92, in this example, may be constructed of nylon, fabric, polyester, cotton, mesh or the like. The hairnet 89 comprises a second (substantially rigid) mesh structure 95, in this example, attached above the sleeve area 92 by nylon thread (or alternatively by glue). In this example, the second mesh structure 95 may be constructed of materials such as polyester, cotton, plastic, steel, wood, or the like. The two different stiffness meshes help prevent movement of the fastener 32 along the sleeve area 92 (e.g., along a longitudinal axis of the sleeve area 92), upon a hair section, such as hair section 14, being secured in the desired style position.

FIG. 11 is a side view showing another embodiment of the hair extension apparatus, wherein two sleeves 92 are used to provide the wearer/stylist with additional freedom to configure and reconfigure the hair sections. In this embodiment, the fasteners 82a and 82b are used independent of one another (or in a coordinated fashion) to realize a desired hair style. The hair sections 88a, 88b provide a different hair style than that of previous embodiments.

Likewise, it will further be recognized that additional sleeves 92 and fasteners (e.g., three or more) may be employed to provide yet additional flexibility to the user. These additional sleeves/fasteners may be placed at different elevations and locations than those shown or proximate thereto in order to provide a “layered” effect for the sections 14. The orientation of the fasteners (and sleeves) may also be varied so that different orientations or “lay” of the hair sections is achieved. For example, the fastener 32 may be a tab, strips such as Velcro® or the like.

Exemplary Methods—

Referring now to FIG. 12, an exemplary embodiment of the method for utilizing the aforementioned extension apparatus is described. While described primarily in the context of the exemplary embodiments of the apparatus 10 shown in FIGS. 1-5, it will be appreciated that the methodology presented herein may be readily adapted to any different configuration of the apparatus 10 by those of ordinary skill.

As shown in FIG. 12, the exemplary method 99 comprises first holding a hair section 14 attached to an outer surface of the hairnet 13 of the hair extension apparatus 10 (step 100). This section 14 may comprise, for example, a plurality of individual or woven hair strands that are intended to be attached to the apparatus 10. These strands may also optionally be pre-conditioned before attachment, such as by coloring/tinting, texturing (e.g., curling), coating with a desired material (e.g., hairspray).

Next, a fastener (e.g., the fastener 32 previously described) is inserted into a sleeve 20 attached to an outer surface of the hairnet per step 102. At least one portion of the hair section 14 is then passed through the fastener (step 104), and the hair section arranged in a desired style position (step 106). Lastly, the fastener is secured to the hair section in the desired style position in order to meet a user criterion for a chosen style/event (step 108).

The method 99 may further optionally include utilizing an elastic band in order to bind along the hair section to create the desired style position, and/or align the hair section to be secured by the fastener 32 in the desired style position (step 110), as previously discussed with respect to FIG. 7.

The method 99 may further comprise actuating a drawstring located along an outer perimeter of the hairnet 13, or other such securing mechanism, so as to secure the hair extension apparatus 10 to hair of a user (step 112).

In an alternative embodiment of step 102, inserting the fastener may comprise attaching at least one of a first and a second member of the fastener to an inner surface of the sleeve. In another alternative of step 102, inserting the fastener may comprise attaching at least one of a first and second member of the fastener to an outer surface of the sleeve.

In an alternate embodiment of step 104, the hair section 14 is passed through a corrugated structure formed or disposed on an inner surface of the first and/or the second members 34, 35 of the fastener 32 in order to separate and secure portions of the hair section 14 in the desired style position.

It will be appreciated that while certain aspects of the invention have been described in terms of a specific sequence of steps of a method, these descriptions are only illustrative of the broader methods of the invention, and may be modified as required by the particular application. Certain steps may be rendered unnecessary or optional under certain circumstances. Additionally, certain steps or functionality may be added to the disclosed embodiments, or the order of performance of two or more steps permuted. All such variations are considered to be encompassed within the invention disclosed and claimed herein.

While the above detailed description has shown, described, and pointed out novel features of the invention as applied to various embodiments, it will be understood that various omissions, substitutions, and changes in the form and details of the device or process illustrated may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the invention. The foregoing description is of the best mode presently contemplated of carrying out the invention. This description is in no way meant to be limiting, but rather should be taken as illustrative of the general principles of the invention. The scope of the invention should be determined with reference to the claims.