Skin can develop dry patches for many reasons. Makeup left on overnight can cause irritant or allergic reactions; but there are also drying skin-care products, dermatitis, eczema, and heavy moisturizers that can cause a buildup of dead skin cells. Any and all of these can contribute to dry patches of skin. The best advice is to avoid drying skin-care products and to use only the lightest-weight moisturizer for dry skin areas.
If the dry patches are chronic or itchy, they can be a form of topical dermatitis or eczema and may require treatment by a dermatologist. If you’ve done your best to eliminate the cause of the problem and the problem persists, one of the best ways to calm down the appearance of dry patches is with an over-the-counter cortisone cream. Lanacort and Cortaid are 1% hydrocortisone creams meant for dry patches of skin, for short-term use only. It is amazing how effective they can be. If the problem lingers, consult a dermatologist for topical prescription options, but for many people over-the-counter hydrocortisone is all it takes.