Severe arterial hypertension is a hallmark of Cushing syndrome which occurs in 80% of the patients. Additionally, persistent cortisol excess induces obesity, hyperinsulinemia with disturbed glucose tolerance and dyslipidemia which all contribute to the development of hypertension and its deleterious sequelae. Cortisol effects are mediated through diversely distributed intracellular glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptors which are protected by the 11-beta-hydroxysteroiddehydrogenase type 2 in cells of some organs (i.e. kidney) but not in other. A highly complex clinical picture evolves in case of hypercortisolism due to the ubiquitous distribution of steroid receptors with different affinity and binding capacities for glucocorticoids. The present review focuses on the cortisol induced changes in blood pressure regulation which contribute to the development of hypertension.