If you’re on Instagram, you’ve probably seen an influx of black and white photos filling your feed this week. It’s all part of the latest social media movement calling for women to empower other women.
Though its origins are unclear, the premise of the challenge is to encourage one another and celebrate each woman’s beauty, strength, and self. Women nominate each other to post a black and white image of themselves that they like using the caption, “Challenge accepted,” and the hashtag #womensupportingwomen. Then they’re supposed to tag other women, encouraging them to post their own black and white photo. The hashtag has over 8 million Instagram posts associated with it at the time of publication.
From celebrities to everyday women across the country, Instagram is being overrun by these monochrome photos, and we’re here for it.
Here are just a few of our favorite, strong, Christian women who are celebrating women this week by accepting the challenge.
Candace Cameron Bure shared a black and white selfie, writing that she feels the most like herself when she’s happy and laughing.
National bestselling author and speaker Jordan Lee Dooley shared her black and white photo and reflected on how the challenge felt similar to one of those chain emails we used to send to our entire address book.
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Ever see something everyone else is doing and feel left out if you weren’t part of it? Apparently there’s a women’s empowerment challenge happening on Instagram right now, the premise being that you send a DM to a friend, encourage them a bit, and challenge them to post a black and white photo of themselves to celebrate their beauty, strength, etc. After doing that, you’re supposed to forward the message on to up to 50 friends to challenge them to do the same. It’s nostalgic, reminds me of a 2007 chain e-mail. Or the chain emails my grandma still sends me 😂 Anyway, I saw a few of these messages in my inbox the last day or two and it stressed me out! What if I forget someone? What if they find out I sent to other friends and accidentally left them out? There’s so many incredible women — how can you possibly just pick a small group? Then I thought about something… How would I feel as an observer, seeing all these women post in response to a friend “challenging” them, which is essentially a friend selecting and cheering for them, only to look in my inbox and see that no one has challenged me? Not very good. 😣 So instead of forwarding something in a private message to 50 select people, I’m breaking the rules a bit. I’m challenging YOU. Post a photo in black and white alone, writing “Challenge Accepted,” and mention my name. Then, if you feel like it, tag the women in your life you want to celebrate. You’re worth celebrating, today and always, sisterfriend. #OwnYourEveryday
Rather than tagging a certain number of friends to join in, she instead challenged her 368k followers to all partake, acknowledging that the challenge can inadvertently wind up discouraging women who are not nominated.
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I love women empowering other women. I’ve always had a heart to inspire and motivate women to ALWAYS believe in the MORE that is within them through Christ. We need to be women who are building each other up and spurring each other on, not tearing each other down and falling into the comparison trap. Thanks for challenging me @lisabevere @candacepayne #challengeaccepted #womenempowerment sharing a few women who inspire me in my stories❤️
“I’ve always had a heart to inspire and motivate women to ALWAYS believe in the MORE that is within them through Christ,” she wrote.
Lisa Bevere shared Matthew 5:9 in the caption of her black and white photo, and reminded others that celebrating women is the very heart of the Father.
“It’s time to celebrate one another and remember that God created women as an ANSWER to the very first PROBLEM.”
There’s not much structure to the challenge itself, and many critics have spoken out, saying that it’s bogging up social feeds during a time when the global pandemic and racism are of large concern. But supporters of the movement disagree, saying that it’s a harmless way to lift women up during an otherwise difficult season for all of us.