4 December 2019

Meet Joshua Coombes

Gillette ambassador and hairdresser to the homeless, Joshua Coombes, on creating spaces where people feel comfortable to talk.
Real Stories | Fundraising

"It just happened one day. I had all my gear on me and I was walking past people on the streets and seeing the poverty that was on my doorstep. I ended up buying this homeless guy a coffee and offered him a haircut - it felt natural, I didn’t overthink it. 
Cutting someone’s hair is quite an intimate thing and you really see someone come out of their shell and they start talking to you a bit deeper about their life and their situation. I didn’t get into hairdressing as my passion initially, I loved the creativity, but it was the people I came back for - the human connection and creating spaces where people feel comfortable to talk.
In LA, I met this guy who was an ex-boxer. It was a bit awkward at first, but we got to talking. He had so many walls up to begin with and asked: “Why are you showing me this love?” I don’t think he’d had any contact in a long time. But my cutting his hair transitioned into meeting him the next day and us walking over to his old boxing gym. The guys there recognised him and agreed to help him out. That interaction changed my perspective on things. Having perspective is incredibly important.”

Joshua Coombes is a Gillette Ambassador. For the seventh year running, Gillette are partnering with Movember to help men live healthier, happier, longer lives.