Title:
Insole with included aloe extract
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An insole includes a layer of foam material which is infused with an aloe extract to provide relief to dry, cracked or itchy feet, facilitate cell renewal and reduce odor. The aloe extract is typically in the form of aloe barbadensis leaf juice. The foam material typically includes ethylene vinyl acetate foam although other foams may be used, such as rubber foam, latex foam, polyethylene foam and polyurethane foam.



Inventors:
Keating, Steven W. (West Portsmouth, OH, US)
Application Number:
11/981057
Publication Date:
04/30/2009
Filing Date:
10/31/2007
Assignee:
Mitchellace, Inc. (Portsmouth, OH, US)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A43B13/38
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
BAYS, MARIE D
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SAND, SEBOLT & WERNOW CO., LPA (CANTON, OH, US)
Claims:
1. A foot bed comprising: a layer of foam material; and aloe extract infused in the layer of foam material.

2. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the aloe extract is in the form of aloe barbadensis leaf juice.

3. The foot bed of claim 2 wherein the layer comprises at least 0.5% by weight aloe barbadensis leaf juice.

4. The foot bed of claim 3 wherein the layer comprises at least 1.0% by weight aloe barbadensis leaf juice.

5. The foot bed of claim 2 wherein the layer comprises 0.5 to 3.0% by weight aloe barbadensis leaf juice.

6. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the layer has a Shore A hardness ranging from 20 to 35.

7. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the foam material comprises a closed cellular structure.

8. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the foam material comprises an open cellular structure.

9. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the layer comprises one of rubber foam, latex foam, polyethylene foam and polyurethane foam.

10. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the layer comprises ethylene vinyl acetate.

11. The foot bed of claim 10 wherein the layer comprises at least 50% by weight ethylene vinyl acetate.

12. The foot bed of claim 11 wherein the layer comprises 57 to 77% by weight ethylene vinyl acetate.

13. The foot bed of claim 10 wherein the layer comprises VAZO 101.

14. The foot bed of claim 13 wherein the layer comprises 17.0 to 37.0% by weight VAZO 101.

15. The foot bed of claim 10 wherein the layer comprises 8.0 to 17.0% by weight zinc oxide.

16. The foot bed of claim 10 wherein the layer comprises a cross linking agent.

17. The foot bed of claim 16 wherein the cross linking agent is dicumyl peroxide.

18. The foot bed of claim 16 wherein the layer comprises zinc oxide.

19. The foot bed of claim 10 wherein the layer comprises an azo compound.

20. The foot bed of claim 1 wherein the layer comprises a chemically reacted blowing agent.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Technical Field

The present invention relates generally to footwear or shoes. More particularly, the invention relates to the insole or foot bed of a shoe. Specifically, the invention relates to an insole which is infused with aloe.

2. Background Information

The insoles of shoes come in a vast number of varieties. Shoes and insoles have been configured in an attempt to meet the various needs of numerous athletic uses, therapeutic needs and general comfort. Some of these insoles have odor absorbing characteristics.

As is well known in the art, people's feet take a great load during the many activities they undergo and also are susceptible to various skin problems and injuries. Often, a person's foot is simply dry, cracked, itchy, tired, achy and so forth. While prior art insoles address a host of problems, there is a need in the art to relieve feet which are cracked or externally injured. The present invention addresses this and other problems in the art.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a foot bed comprising: a layer of foam material; and aloe extract infused in the layer of foam material.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of the insole of the present invention in use with a shoe.

FIG. 2 is a sectional view taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The insole or foot bed of the present invention is shown generally at 10 in FIG. 1 in use with a shoe 12. Insole 10 is disposed within shoe 12 atop the sole thereof. In accordance with the invention, insole 10 is infused with an aloe extract typically in the form of aloe barbadensis leaf juice. Insole 10 may be removably mounted within shoe 12. While insole 10 is shown as a distinct component, it may also represent an integral part of shoe 12 such that other portions of shoe 12 or shoe 12 in its entirety may be formed of the material of the present invention. Insole 10 has a front end 14, a rear end 16 and first and second sides 18 and 20. Insole 10 is generally foot shaped and includes a front section 22, intermediate or middle section 24 and a rear section 26. Front section 22 may also be referred to as a toe support and ball support section for supporting the toes and ball and related pads of the foot. Middle section 24 may also be referred to as an arch support section adapted to support the arch or middle of the foot. Rear section 26 may also be thought of as a heel supporting section for supporting the heel of the foot.

As shown in FIG. 2, insole 10 has an upwardly facing top surface 28 and a downwardly facing bottom surface 30 defining therebetween a thickness T1. Thickness T1 may be any suitable thickness which is appropriate for use with an insole. Typically, thickness T1 is with the range of 1-15 millimeters, more typically within the range of 2-10 millimeters and even more typically within the range of 3-8 millimeters. While insole 10 in the exemplary embodiment is generally flat and has a substantially constant thickness, insole 10 may be formed with various curvatures suited to fit a person's foot and may have a thickness which varies from the front to the rear or from side to side of insole 10. Upper surface 28 supports the person's foot when inserted into shoe 12 and lower surface 30 is seated atop the sole of shoe 12. Insole 10 in the exemplary embodiment is shown as a single layer although it may be formed of a plurality of layers at least one of which is formed in accordance with present invention. Typically, the uppermost layer of insole 10 is formed in accordance the present invention although another permeable layer may formed atop a layer formed in accordance with present invention.

Insole 10 is formed as a layer which is generally flat although it may have some curvatures as previously discussed. Insole 10 is formed of a foam or has a foam type structure which may be of an open or closed cellular structure. In the preferred embodiment, the base compound or primary component of insole 10 is ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) although the base compound may also be a rubber foam, latex foam, polyethylene foam, polyurethane foam or other suitable compound.

An EVA foam includes EVA and typically also includes a filler, blowing or foaming agent and a cross linking agent. Various types of pigments may also be used. The present invention further includes an aloe extract which is most preferably aloe barbadensis leaf juice. In the exemplary embodiment, insole 10 is formed from a mixture of the following components wherein the percentages noted are by weight: EVA in a range of 57 to 77 percent, more typically in a range of 62 to 72 percent and typically about 67 percent; a reactive power in a range of 17 to 37 percent, more typically in a range of 22 to 32 percent and typically about 27 percent; an azo compound in the range of about 2 to 6 percent and typically about 4 percent; azodicarbonamide in a range of about 0.5 to 2.0 percent, more typically in a range of 1.0 to 1.5 percent and typically about 1.3 percent; a cross linking agent such as dicumyl peroxide in a range of about 0.1 to 1.5 percent, more typically in the range of about 0.2 to 1.0 percent and typically in a range of about 0.3 to 0.7 percent; a pigment typically up to about 2.0 percent and usually in the range of about 0.2 to 0.6 percent; and an aloe extract typically in the range of 0.5 to 3.0 percent, more typically from 1.0 to 2.0 percent and usually about 1.5 percent.

As previously noted, in the preferred embodiment the aloe extract is aloe barbadensis leaf juice. The reactive powder noted above is in the exemplary embodiment in the form of a yellowish fine powder known as VAZO 101 which is available through Valco Chemical Company LTD. in Taiwan. VAZO 101 has a zinc oxide (ZnO) content of 45 to 49 percent. Thus, the amount of zinc oxide in the mixture of the exemplary embodiment is typically in the range of about 8 to 17 percent, more typically from 10 to 15 percent and typically about 12 to 13 percent.

Insole 10 has a Shore A hardness of about 20 to 35. One of the advantages of the EVA foam is the ability to custom mold the insole to a person's foot for extra comfort and stability. Menthol or other chemicals producing a desirable scent may be added to the mixture during the production of insole 10.

The process for forming insole 10 is now described broadly. The various ingredients are mixed together typically at around atmospheric pressure so that a thorough mixing occurs. Typically, the mixing is achieved within 5 to 20 minutes. At room temperature, EVA and various other components are in a solid state while the aloe extract is in a liquid state. Thus, the mixture is heated to a temperature within the range of about 100 to 115 degrees C. in order to melt the EVA so that the EVA and aloe are in a compatible liquid state. The blowing agent is injected through injection ducts at an appropriate time and the entire mixture is then run through an extruder. Typically, the thickness of the mixture within the extruder is about 8 to 12 millimeters thick and exits through a dye which reduces the thickness to form a sheet which is about 1 millimeter thick. The sheet is baked or heated at about 120 to 135 degrees C. for approximately 60 to 75 minutes during which period the sheet expands to form a foam material which is typically about 40 to 50 millimeters thick. After this baking process, the expanded material is allowed to sit typically for at least 12 hours before a skiving or cutting process in which the expanded foam is cut into layers of a desirable thickness for use in making insole 10.

This process results in an insole 10 which is infused with aloe throughout. The aloe extract provides several advantages, including the relief of dry, cracked and itchy feet, including cracked heels. Aloe has a therapeutic characteristic which provides penetration of skin layers to speed up cell renewal. It also helps stop odors and generally rejuvenates the feet. Aloe is also safe for diabetics which thus increases the usefulness of insole 10.

In the foregoing description, certain terms have been used for brevity, clearness, and understanding. No unnecessary limitations are to be implied therefrom beyond the requirement of prior art because such terms are used for descriptive purposes and are intended to be broadly construed.

Moreover, the description and illustration of the invention is an example and the invention is not limited to the exact details shown or described.