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Challenge Accepted: Why women are posting black-and-white selfies on Instagram

There has been more than 5 million posts on Instagram with the hashtag #ChallengeAccepted. Here's what you need to know about the latest social media challenge.

A social media trend that's meant to promote female empowerment has filled Instagram feeds recently with black-and-white selfies.

For the #ChallengeAccepted trend, a person nominates their friends to share a black-and-white photo on Instagram, often with the caption "Challenge accepted." 

As of Tuesday evening, there have been more than 5 million posts with the hashtag #ChallengeAccepted. Many of the posts have also included encouraging messages to other women along with the hashtag #Womensupportingwomen. 

In 2016, the hashtag #ChallengeAccepted trend popped up on social media alongside black-and-white selfies to spread cancer awareness. An Instagram representative told the New York Times that the earliest post the company could find from this latest round of "Challenge Accepted" photos was posted on July 17 by Brazilian journalist Ana Paula Padrao. 

Many celebrities, including Jennifer Aniston, Kerry Washington and Ava DuVernay have taken part in this latest rendition of the challenge. 

"Thank you to all the brilliant and beautiful women in my life who sent the most uplifting messages today," Aniston said in her caption. "Truth be told, I don’t really understand this #challengeaccepted thing…but who doesn't love (a) good reason to support women!  Soooo…. challenge accepted!" 

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The "Friends" star also used her post to encourage other women to register to vote "for the issues that affect women." 

"Selma" and "When They See Us" director Ava DuVernay joined in and said she was "Pretty sure this is just a cool excuse to post pix, but I’m gonna always roll with whatever."

"Challenge accepted," Kerry Washington said in her post. "Thank you for nominating me @vanessabryant I am awed by the power of women loving each other and lifting each other up!!!!! And I adore you Xo"