Description: Black pepper is a perennial, woody vine with heart-shaped leaves and white flowers, which turn into berries or peppercorns. The essential oil is steam-distilled from the dried, crushed, almost-ripe berries.
Countries of origin: India, Indonesia, Madagascar
Characteristics: Black pepper has hot, spicy, fiery top notes and warm, sharp, woody, oriental undertones. In small amounts, it blends well with other spices and most florals, and also with frankincense, sandalwood, marjoram and rosemary.
Main therapeutic properties: Analgesic, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, bactericide, carminative, digestive, febrifuge, laxative, rubefacient, stimulant, tonic.
Black pepper is one of the best stimulant essential oils for the digestive system. Blended with marjoram and used in firm abdominal massage, it
relieves constipation. It also stimulates the appetite and helps to relieve flatulence. Black pepper stimulates the spleen so it is useful in treating
anaemia. It can be used in compresses to treat bruises and chilblains. Overall, black pepper is fortifying, strengthening and stimulating.
Psychologically, it is warming, builds endurance and helps you reconnect with life whenever you feel alienated. Black pepper is full of mystery and
intrigue, and fortifies both mind and spirit. Its slight aphrodisiac quality is
especially useful when blended into an intimate massage oil for those whose sensual emotions lack fire and passion. Black pepper is indicated in
meditations when you feel cold and aloof, and helps you move on when you feel stuck and trapped.
Contraindications: Do not use if you have very sensitive skin. Use no more than 3 drops in the bath and no more than 2 per cent in massage oils.