Make Up For Ever Artist Color Shadow ($17.00 for 0.08 oz.) is a large range with over 100 shades, and there were winners and losers throughout the five finishes the range is divided into. I really enjoyed some shades, and I found others more challenging to use. I really did not like that the brand kept names but often changed colors or finishes to the point where I think it causes confusion. They didn’t seem to last quite as well on bare skin as before (particularly the shimmery shades), but they were easier to work with over various eyeshadow primers (previously, I often experienced better application over bare skin than some primers).
I think that the formula lost some of its uniqueness in the reformulation as most of the shades became a bit denser and slightly less pigmented as a result, as they were not as yielding to brushes, and the richness of the original formula definitely was a big reason why I was so impressed the first time around. The other factor that was in play for me, personally, is simply that a lot of brands have since rolled out more dimethicone-heavy formulations, so upon going through both the original Artist Shadow and the reformulated Artist Color Shadow ranges, I was just less blown away.
I spent a lot of time going back-and-forth between the two formulas, and I largely preferred the updated matte formula as it is a lot less powdery and more velvety, so they work more readily on bare skin whereas the mattes of the prior range I felt needed primer to apply best. I did not fully review and rate all the individual shades of the original formula, so it’s hard to compare solely by rating. The other formulas seemed to depend more on the shade, though the updated Satins and Iridescents were definitely firmer across the board.
The original Artist Shadow formula had a creamier, slightly softer, and thicker feel for finishes like Metallic, Iridescent, and Satin, while I felt the original Diamond finish was denser/thicker (heavier almost) and the Matte finish was more powdery but similar in softness and pigmentation (I did not find the original Mattes to be ultra pigmented across the board–semi-opaque to opaque, buildable, which you can see in my original swatches here). By and large, I found the formula to be easy to work with and did not have to spend a lot of time blending or fussing with the shades on the lid.