So Money - Episode 577

Mia Saini Duchnowski

Oars + Alps Co-Founder

A couple months back I purchased a gift for my husband through this company Oars + Alps, a men’s athleisure and natural grooming brand. The brand is being called the “Warby Parker of men’s grooming,” and was created after the founders won the regional 2016 Harvard Business School New Venture Challenge and spent a year in research and development. All the while, the brainchild behind this product was none other than my old colleague Mia Saini Duchnowski.  She, along with Laura Lisowski, is the company’s founder, and our guest on So Money® today.

I worked with Mia back in the day at  We sat across from each other during the market’s demise. She was an intern and was contemplating leaving Harvard Business School to pursue being a financial correspondent. She made the transition and went on to be a very successful reporter and anchor at Bloomberg TV covering the global financial markets. She’s pivoted since, launching into the world of entrepreneurship. The idea for Oars + Alps grew out of a personal necessity; both Mia and her co-founder’s husbands needed better products to help with sensitive skin.

In our conversation we discuss..

  • How Mia and her co-founder Laura took advantage of being outsiders to the skincare world. Naiveté can be an asset, Mia says.
  • Understanding what men want. The marketing psychology behind getting men to care and spend more for grooming products.
  • Why Mia insists on keeping her financial accounts separate from her husband’s. “I don’t want to be the beneficiary of someone else’s hard work,” she tells me.

If you’d like to learn more about Oars + Alps visit or follow them on Twitter @oarsandalps. Mia’s personal account is @miasaini.

One of my favorite quotes from the interview: “I don’t wanna be the beneficiary of someone else’s hard work.” – Click To Tweet

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