The artificial lift (AL) system is the most efficient production technique in optimizing production from the unconventional horizontal oil and gas wells. Nonetheless, due to declining reservoir pressure during the production life of a well, artificial lifting of oil and gas remains a critical issue. Notwithstanding the attempt by several studies in the past few decades to understand and develop cutting-edge technologies to optimize the application of AL in tight formations, there remains differing assessments of the best approach, AL type, optimum time, and conditions to install AL during the life of a well. This report presents a comprehensive review of AL system application with specific focus on tight oil and gas formations across the world. The review focuses on over 35 successful and unsuccessful field tests in the unconventional horizontal wells over the past few decades. The purpose is to apprise the industry and academic researchers on the various AL optimization approaches that have been used and suggest AL optimization areas where new technologies can be developed.