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Ep 18: Paris Lees

Author, activist and transgender trailblazer, Paris Lees joins me for the third episode of my mini-series, Reign with Pride, and it is one of the most eye opening conversations I have ever had. Paris Lees is the definition of a LGBTQIA+ trailblazer. She was the first openly trans woman to present a show on Radio 1, to present a show on Channel 4, to appear on Question Time and become a contributing editor for Vogue. She’s even had a cameo on Hollyoaks, addressed the Oxford Union in 2014, and in 2016 gave evidence at the home affairs select committee on prostitution laws.But her personal story, which she details in her powerful new memoir 'What It Feels Like For A Girl', tells even more of a story. It is a brutally honest account of her being groomed for sex work as a teenager, the abuse she suffered from her father, being physically bullied at school, and how she came to terms with her identity. In spite of all this adversity and ending up in prison as a teenager after committing a robbery, Paris went to college and went on to graduate at Brighton University with a degree in English language and literature and finds herself where she is today. Hearing Paris Lee's lived experiences in this episode was remarkable as we reflected on chosen family, spectrum grace in the LGBTQIA+ community and how despite experiencing the darkest of times she found her power. This mini-series of four episodes will feature some of the most prominent role models in the LGBTQ+ community from Cara Delevingne to Samira Wiley, to celebrate Pride Month - something that means so much to me! When I was growing up I didn’t feel like I truly had any role models - like Samira - and I know that listening to these guests would have helped ‘younger me’ and also, ‘adult me’ during the multiple times in my life when I have struggled with taking pride in who I am. If you are struggling with your identity at the moment or just need someone to talk to please reach out to the LGBT Foundation, who I mentioned in this episode. Their helplines are always open and confidential and you can find out more at lgbt.foundation. I hope you love this episode as much as I do and I truly hope this series will help you take pride in your identity no matter how you identify. You can follow me at @joshsmithhosts across social media and please get in touch as I love to hear from you! Love Josh xxx Thank you to our sponsors this week, Jean Paul Gaultier fragrances. When it comes to embracing the LGBTQ+ community in its entirety, there is no one quite like Jean Paul Gaultier! The brand is a symbol of queer freedom and the gorgeous new RAINBOW limited edition Le Male Pride collector bottle symbolises just that. 100% of profits will go towards the national LGBTQ+ youth homelessness charity, AKT who have provided over 250,000 nights off the street for LGBTQ+ young people at risk of, or experiencing homelessness. You can pick up your very own Le Male Pride bottle right now from Look Fantastic. P.S You will also have heard an advert for my favourite skincare brand, Aurelia London who are, not only, THE experts in Probiotic Skincare but using their Probiotic Concentrate with my Aurelia London Day Moisturiser has bought back my glow, just in time for me to re-enter civilisation! Yay! FYI - Aurelia London's probiotic skincare is effective for skin conditions from dullness to ageing to rosacea and pigmentation to acne. And as a treat for you, you can get 20% off the entire range by heading to aurelialondon.com and using the code JOSH20 at the check out! Hope you love it as much as I do!

Om Podcasten

Everyone has the power to make it REIGN! In each episode presenter Josh Smith and his celebrity guests sit down for an unfiltered chat to show you that no matter what obstacles life throws at you, you can overcome them and Reign your own life! These empowering and honest conversations show that we are all more similar than we are different, and hopefully they will make you feel less alone in your struggles, whatever they may be. So get your crowns at the ready, and prepare to be inspired!