Makarova made a confident start in holding her opening service game to love.
The world number two replied with a comfortable hold of her own, before getting her nose in front in the third game of the match.
The 24-year-old Muscovite became the first person to break the Sharapova serve in the tournament, hitting a spectacular forehand winner to get back on track.
However, a double fault when defending a break point in the next game gifted Sharapova another break.
Last year's beaten finalist continued her relentless march in Melbourne by breaking once more and serving out for a one-set lead.
Makarova was on her way to an easy hold of serve in the first game of the second set, but a loose shot allowed Sharapova back in.
The 25-year-old took full advantage of some slapdash shot selection to get the break.
She again secured the double break on her way to another straight-sets victory.