Have you seen Urban Decay's newly overhauled shadow line? They took their current lineup of shadows (which were already good), completely reformulated them for better texture, adhesion, fallout- and crease-resistance, updated the packaging to not only look better, but so that the pans can be easily popped out and placed into customizable palettes, plus they even added a few shades previously only available in palettes. Sadly, quite a few shades were discontinued in the process (some of my favorites, too), but they're still available on the website until they run out.
Anyway, let me walk through the brand new packaging really quickly before I start talking about the formula.
The new shadow containers open the same way as the old ones, but unlike the plain black casing those had inside, the new ones use the chrome material used on the outside on the inside as well.
I have a few of the new shadows to review, five I've used before and one that's new to me. The shades are (clockwise from top):
Midnight Cowboy Rides Again
No primer, natural light and flash. Left to right: Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, Mildew, Mushroom, Snakebite, SWF, Woodstock.
Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Rides Again
Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, original (left)
Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, new (right)
There's a slight variation in the shades here- the old one seems a little darker and has a lot more glitter, the new one is a little lighter, slightly more pink, has less glitter. In the old version, all the glitter would fall out of the shadow the minute you put it on your lids. In the new version there's still some fallout but, shockingly, a good portion of the glitter actually sticks!
Urban Decay Mildew
Urban Decay Mildew, original (left)
Urban Decay Mildew, new (right)
I think in this instance, I actually like the old version better than the reformulated one. The older one feels softer to me, and it also goes on darker. The new one isn't bad by any means, but it feels less soft and doesn't have the same pigmentation.
Urban Decay Mushroom
Urban Decay Mushroom, original (left)
Urban Decay Mushroom, new (right)
These seem mostly the same to me. The new one might be a little more dense and have a softer texture, otherwise this one didn't seem to change much with the reformulation.
Urban Decay SWF
(flash picture shows the microglitter)
Urban Decay SWF, original (left)
Urban Decay SWF, new (right)
The old one has more silver microglitter, but none of it stays on anyway. The new one is softer, sticks better, but seems to have less microglitter.
Urban Decay Woodstock
Urban Decay Woodstock, original (left)
Urban Decay Woodstock, new (right)
I have Woodstock in the Rollergirl palette (I love that palette so much), but it was my least favorite shadow from that palette in terms of formula. The old one is hard, which makes it difficult to pick up much shadow, but even when you get enough, the pigmentation isn't very good. The new one is much softer and has improved color payoff.
Urban Decay Snakebite
I don't have another version of this, so this one is new to me. I believe it was exclusive to the Naked2 palette, which I don't have yet. The texture of this one is like butter and it has excellent pigmentation.
The first newly reformulated shadow I tried Midnight Cowboy Rides Again. I had to see if they'd found a way to make the glitter stick. Here's the look I did:
Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Rides Again on lid
Urban Decay Snakebite in crease and on lower lashline
Urban Decay Demolition, smudged as liner and on waterline
(With flash and fluorescent light)
- New packaging is GORGEOUS. It's both elegant and edgy, modern but true to Urban Decay's history and style.
- New shadows haven't changed colors drastically. I'm always worried about color changes in reformulated products.
- New formula is buttery soft and applies like a dream.
- A lot of shades that were previously only available in palettes are now part of the permanent line (Mushroom!!).
- They figured out how to make most of the glitter stay in the glitter shades. It's a miracle!
- Most of the Deluxe shades have been absorbed into the regular line, so no more trying to store those little weird-shaped domed compacts that never stacked well.
- Some of my favorite colors got discontinued :(
- Price increase of $1 per shadow. That's not a bad increase at all, but worth mentioning.
- The palette system seems expensive to me. The Build Your Own Palette is an empty six-pan palette that comes with a free shadow and a brush, but it costs $18 for the palette itself plus $18 for each shadow. $126 for a full palette. I don't believe there's a way to get the pans separately for a reduced price (á la MAC Pro Palette Refills), but I hope that's something they will do in the future.
- Also, if you're planning on buying shadows to fill the palette, all that pretty new packaging is wasted since you take the shadow pans out of the single compacts to put them into the palette. The old Eyeshadow Vault allowed you to place the entire compact into a palette, but it did take up a huge amount of space and the new one is significantly easier to store.
- A lot of the shades are really frosty.
You can click here to see which shades were discontinued and see what new shades they recommend to replace the old ones. You can also view the entire current lineup of 68 shades and get started on building your own palette. All of the original shades are still available at the moment, so you might want to stock up in case your favorite color was one of the discontinued ones.
The new Urban Decay single eyeshadows are $18 each, and are now available on urbandecay.com.
(This was sent for review.)