The Lost Boys Club is a new barber shop situated in Pontypridd. It is run by owners of Ghekko Rags Clothing designer- Joshua Downes. Joshua has a long history of battling with mental health, he began self-harming at age 11 and fought his own demons for more than a decade.
His partner once described him as a Lost Boy as he aimlessly existed day to day not knowing which path to take next. Last year, Joshua, who was close to a breakdown and contemplated suicide realised that he had to act quickly once he discovered he was going to become a dad.
After years of suffering in silence, Josh opened up to family members and was encouraged to seek immediate help. Opening up to someone helped take the weight off his shoulders and with the help of a GP that specialised in mental health he was diagnosed with a mood disorder similar to bipolar.
He was put on medication that helped balance his moods, and his life did a complete U-turn. During his recovery, Josh focused all of his energy on designing clothes which he has branded as Ghekko Rags. Realising that he had a flair for design and people were interested in buying his clothes Josh didn't stop there, he completed a barbering course and grew a large following on social media due to his quirky photos, on-trend clothing brand and dry-sense of humoured captions.
Josh realised that he had gained a platform which could enable him to help other people that are suffering from mental ill-health. He took a massive step in June 2018 and opened up The Lost Boys Club Barber Shop and Clothing Store in which he strongly supports the charity CALM. The shop has become a Calmzone for customers and offers not only haircuts and clothing but a relaxed environment for those who may want to open up about their own troubles.
It surprised Josh with how many people were going through mental health problems and how just chatting to him made a difference, and he wishes to take it even further. He has recently appeared on ITV news in hope to break the stigma of mental health and encourage people to talk, even if it is just to your barber. He wishes to spread awareness through his clothing brand and barber shop and also aims to set an example to people suffering that things can get better and never to give up.
Ghekko Rags Lost Boys Club - Website