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United States Patent Application 20180140032
Kind Code A1
Suh; John May 24, 2018

WIG CLIP AND WIG BASE HAVING ATTACHED WIG CLIP

Abstract

A wig clip having a set of comb teeth movable into and out of engagement with a clamping member on a frame is provided with a layer of fusible solid material on the frame in a quantity sufficient to enable the wig clip to be secured to the net material of a wig base by the application of heat to the layer of solid material. The application of heat causes the solid material to melt so that, when the wig clip is brought into contact with the net material, the fusible material flows through apertures of the net material, and then resolidifies, the wig clip is securely attached to the net material. The preferred fusible solid material is ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer.


Inventors: Suh; John; (North Wales, PA)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Annie International, Inc.

North Wales

PA

US
Assignee: Annie International, Inc.
North Wales
PA

Family ID: 1000002293200
Appl. No.: 15/360267
Filed: November 23, 2016


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A41G 3/005 20130101; A41G 3/0033 20130101
International Class: A41G 3/00 20060101 A41G003/00

Claims



1. A wig clip comprising a frame, a set of comb teeth connected to said frame and movable into and out of engagement with a clamping member on said frame, said clamping member having a clamping surface facing in a first direction, and a layer of solid material attached to said frame, said layer of solid material being fusible upon the application of heat, and located on a side of said frame facing in a direction opposite said first direction, said solid material being present on said frame in a quantity sufficient to enable the wig clip to be secured to the net material of a wig base by the application of heat to said layer of solid material to cause the solid fusible material to melt, discontinuing the application of heat, bringing the wig clip into contact with the net material of the wig base, and allowing a portion of said solid material to flow through apertures of said net material, and allowing said fusible material to resolidify, thereby securely attaching said wig clip to said net material.

2. A wig clip according to claim 1, wherein said layer of solid material is an ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer.

3. A wig clip comprising a frame having a cross-member, a pair of legs spaced from each other and extending in a first direction from the cross-member, a clamping member connected to said legs and extending from one of said legs to the other and spaced from said cross-member, and a set of comb teeth connected to the cross-member of the frame and extending past the clamping member, said comb teeth being movable into and out of engagement with the clamping member of said frame on one side of the frame, wherein said frame includes an area on each of said legs to which a layer of solid material is attached, said layer of solid material being fusible upon the application of heat, and located on a side of said frame opposite said one side of frame, and in a quantity sufficient to enable the wig clip to be secured to the net material of a wig base by the application of heat to said layer of solid material to cause the solid fusible material to melt, discontinuing the application of heat, bringing the wig clip into contact with the net material of the wig base, and allowing a portion of said solid material to flow through apertures of said net material, and allowing said fusible material to resolidify, thereby securely attaching said wig clip to said net material.

4. A wig clip according to claim 3, wherein said layer of solid material is an ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer.

5. A wig base comprising a net material adapted to fit over the cranial portion of a human head and having an inside surface and an outside surface, said wig base including at least one wig clip, each said wig clip comprising a frame located on the inside surface of the wig base, said frame having a cross-member, a pair of legs spaced from each other and extending in a first direction from the cross-member, a clamping member connected to said legs and extending from one of said legs to the other and spaced from said cross-member, and a set of comb teeth connected to the cross-member of the frame and extending past the clamping member, said comb teeth being movable into and out of engagement with the clamping member of said frame on one side of the frame, wherein said frame includes an area on each of said legs to which a layer of fusible solid material is attached, said areas being located on a side of said frame opposite said one side of the frame, said layer of solid material including first and second portions respectively on the inside and outside surfaces of the wig base, and connecting portions extending through apertures of the net material and connecting said first and second portions to each other, thereby securely attaching said wig clip to said net material.
Description



FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] This invention relates to wig clips, i.e., clips used to secure a wig base to a wearer's natural hair, and more specifically to improvements in the attachment of a wig clip to the wig base.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] A typical wig clip is described in U.S. Pat. No. 8,631,804, granted on Jan. 21, 2014, and the disclosure of that patent is incorporated by reference. The wig clip is composed of a U-shaped frame member having legs extending from opposite ends of an intermediate portion of the frame, a set of comb teeth disposed between the legs and also extending from the intermediate portion, and a connecting portion secured to the legs by rivets and extending from one leg to the other. The connecting portion is overlapped by the comb teeth.

[0003] The frame has a spring property and is made from a metal, a synthetic resin, or another material having a spring property, and, when the frame member and the connecting portion are apart from each other and in a relaxed condition, the distance between the rivet holes of the connecting portion is either greater than, or less than, the distance between the rivet holes in the legs of the U-shaped frame member. Consequently, when the connecting portion is riveted to the frame, the wig clip tends to bend out of a planar configuration, and can be manually shifted from one stable condition to another by a toggle action. In a first stable condition, the comb teeth are spaced by a short distance from the connecting portion, and in a second stable condition, the comb teeth are in contact with the connecting portion.

[0004] Usually, several of these wig clips are attached to a wig base. The wig base is a flexible net-like structure to which wig hair is attached by a process known as "weaving." The wig clips are used to attach the wig base to a wearer's natural hair. When the wig clip is in its first stable condition, i.e., with the comb teeth spaced from the connecting portion, the comb teeth can be engaged with a lock of the wearer's natural hair close to the scalp. Then, by manual bending, the wig clip can be toggled to its second stable condition, and the wearer's natural hair is clamped between the comb teeth and the connecting portion so that the wig base is secured in place.

[0005] Other wig clips, such as the wig clip described in U.S. Pat. No. 8,689,807, granted on Apr. 8, 2014, utilize a spring-urged, pivoted comb to secure the wearer's natural hair to a frame. The comb teeth are formed with an array of projections to ensure that the wig clip is securely attached to the wearer's natural hair.

[0006] A wig clip is typically sewn to a wig base by passing yarns through holes formed in the frame of the wig clip. Sewing is effective in making a secure connection between the wig clip and the wig base, but the sewing process is time-consuming. As an alternative, wig clips have been secured to the net material of the wig base by the use of barbs formed on the frame or on extensions of the frame structure. The barbs also connect the wig clip to the wig base securely, but, if not properly positioned, they can cause some discomfort to the wearer.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] An object of this invention is to provide a simpler, yet effective, means for securing a wig clip to a wig base.

[0008] A wig clip in accordance with the invention comprises a frame, and a set of comb teeth connected to the frame and movable into and out of engagement with a clamping member on the frame. The clamping member has a clamping surface facing in a first direction, and a layer of solid material, fusible upon the application of heat is attached to the frame on a side of thereof facing in a direction opposite the direction in which the clamping surface faces. The solid material is present on the frame in a quantity sufficient to enable the wig clip to be secured to the net material of a wig base by the application of heat to the layer of solid material to cause the solid fusible material to melt, discontinuing the application of heat, bringing the wig clip into contact with the net material of the wig base, and allowing the melted fusible material to flow through apertures of the net material and to resolidify, thereby securely attaching the wig clip to the net material. The preferred fusible solid material is ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer.

[0009] The preferred form of wig clip is one comprising a frame having a cross-member, and a pair of legs spaced from each other and extending in a first direction from the cross-member. The clamping member is connected to the legs, spaced from the cross-member, and extends from one of the legs to the other. The comb teeth are connected to the cross-member and extend past the clamping member. The frame includes an area on each of the legs to which a layer of the fusible solid material is attached.

[0010] A wig base can have a plurality of wig clips as described above secured to its inner side by the fusible material at suitable locations for attachment of the wig base to a wearer's natural hair.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0011] FIG. 1 is an elevational view of a wig clip according to the invention, as seen from the side that engages the surface of a wig base;

[0012] FIG. 2 is a schematic bottom plan view showing the wig clip of FIG. 1 and a heating appliance used to melt the fusible solid material;

[0013] FIG. 3 is a bottom plan view showing the wig clip secured to the wig base; and

[0014] FIG. 4 is a perspective view showing two wig clips secured to a wig base.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0015] As shown in FIG. 1, the wig clip 10 in accordance with the invention comprises a frame having a cross-member 12 and a pair of legs 14 and 16 spaced from each other and extending in a first direct (downward in FIG. 1) from the cross-member. A clamping member 18, connected the legs, extends from one leg to the other at a location spaced from the cross-member. Comb teeth 20, which are preferably formed as a unit with the cross-member 12, extend past the clamping member 18.

[0016] The frame, including the legs, and the cross member is preferably composed of a metal, a synthetic resin, or another material having spring properties. The clamping member 18 is connected to the legs 16 and 18 in such a way that the clamping member is under tension while the cross-member is under longitudinal compression, or, alternatively, so that the clamping member is under longitudinal compression while the cross-member is under tension. As a result, the wig clip can be manually toggled between two stable conditions, one in which the comb teeth 20 are in contact with the clamping member 18 and pressing against the clamping member, and the other, in which the comb teeth are spaced from the clamping member. The comb teeth can be moved to spaced relationship with the clamping member before the wig clip engaged with a wearer's natural hair, and then toggled into the other stable condition, thereby clamping the wearer's natural hair between the comb teeth and the clamping member. The tension and compression in the cross-member and the clamping member can be achieved by applying tension or compression to the cross-member or to the clamping member when securing the clamping member to the legs by means of rivets. If the clamping member and cross member are unitary, a similar result can be achieved by applying tension or compression in the process of forming the unit.

[0017] The clamping member 18 is preferably covered by an elastomeric sleeve of natural or synthetic rubber, to improve frictional contact between the wig clip and the wearer's natural hair.

[0018] The clamping surface of the clamping member 18 engageable by the comb teeth faces the comb teeth in a first direction. As shown in FIG. 1, a layer 22 of solid fusible material is attached to leg 14 of the wig clip frame, and a similar layer 24 is attached to leg 16. These layers 22 and 24 are located on the side of the frame that faces in a direction opposite to the first direction.

[0019] The fusible solid material can be selected from a variety of "hot-melt" adhesives, including EVA (ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymers), acrylic, polyolefin, polyurethane, polyamide, and natural rubber. For this application EVA is preferred, and suitable EVA hot-melt adhesives include ELVAX.RTM. 150 ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer, available from E. I. duPont de Nemours and Company, Inc., Chestnut Run Plaza, Bldg. 730, 974 Centre Road, Wilmington, Del., 19805 USA, and RELENE EVA ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer, available from Reliance Industries Limited, Reliance corporate Park, Block 8A, Thane Belapur Road, Ghansoli, Navi Mumbai 400701, India. EVA typically melts at a temperature of about 63.degree. C.

[0020] As shown in FIG. 2, a heater 28 is used to apply heat to the fusible layers 22 and 24, thereby melting the layers. Upon discontinuance of the application of heat, the fusible material retains heat and remains in a Plowable condition for a sufficient time to allow the side of the wig clip frame on which the fusible layers are located to be brought into contact with the net material of a wig base, and to allow a part of the fusible material to flow through the apertures of the net material.

[0021] The heating element can be in the form of an electrically heated element that is brought into direct contact with the fusible material, or alternatively a heat gun or similar device that directs a stream of hot air toward the fusible layers.

[0022] After the side of the wig clip frame on which the fusible layers 22 and 24 are located is brought into contact with the net material of a wig base, and a part of the fusible material is allowed to flow through the apertures of the net material, the fusible material resolidifies and portions of the fusible material on both sides of the net are connected to each other by elements of fusible material extending through the apertures of the net. As shown in FIG. 3, the resolidified layers 22 and 24 of fusible material include portions on both sides of the net material 26 as well as connecting portions extending through the apertures of the net material. These resolidified layers firmly secure the wig clip to the net material of the wig base.

[0023] A typical wig base net material melts at a temperature of approximately 82.degree. C., not far above the melting temperature of the EVA hot melt adhesive. For this reason, the step of discontinuing the application of heat, is preferably carried out and discontinued before bringing the wig clip into contact with the net material of the wig base. However, in the case of a higher melting wig base material, the heating device can be operated while the wig clip is in contact with the base material.

[0024] FIG. 4 shows a wig base 30 having an inner surface 32 to which two wig clips 34 and 36 are attached by fusible layers in the manner depicted in FIG. 3. The wig clips are typically located adjacent the perimeter of the wig base on the inner surface, and are spaced from one other. Any desired number of wig clips can be attached to a given wig base at locations such that the wig clips can engage the wearer's natural hair to hold the wig base, and the wig hair (not shown) can be woven to the wig base, in place.

[0025] One of the advantages of the use of fusible material to attach wig clips to the wig base is that no sewing or other time-consuming steps are required to attach the clips to the wig base. The attachment can be carried out in a very short time, making it possible to customize the number, arrangement and positions of the wig clips to accommodate the needs of a particular individual wearer.

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